Things take time

OneThreeTwo

It’s been a while since my last post, sadly, motivation has seemed to be rather low, but in the meantime, the 900 has been well and truly put through it’s paces. We’ve done almost 3,000 miles in it since it’s recovery, everything from driving lessons to road trips to Wales, it’s sat in heavy traffic, darted along winding country roads and cruised happily along motorways.

For the life of me I can’t understand why more people don’t embrace older cars as daily drivers, the 900 is ridiculously comfortable, it has electric windows and a quiet sunroof, it’s well mannered around town and has a gorgeously distinct burble when you put your foot down, it also commands quite a bit of attention. Young and old just can’t help giving it the thumbs up, from a bunch of hipster skateboarders to a very smart gentleman who couldn’t resist telling me how much he loved Saabs – he’d owned a few in the past and longed to own another.

The work continues though, the sunroof leaks when it rains heavily, the windscreen washer pipes have become brittle and keep falling off, and the new Turbo cluster still isn’t quite right, what I mean by that, is that smoke starts pouring out if I turn off the lights, and there’s no illumination at night.

We’ve also discovered the passenger side arch still has some rust that needs sorting, but lets face it, it doesn’t stop you driving and things just take time.

I’ve managed to source a set of roof bar towers and will be attempting to find some nice spotlights to keep the ‘Swedish Wilderness’ look on track.

The search also continues for something aptly unique to replace the 9-3 Aero convertible, although I’ve been wishing I hadn’t sold the 9-5 Hirsch, that was pretty rare.

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Canadian twin classics

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As far as Saab spotting goes, this year’s trip to Canada wasn’t a successful one, amidst a sea of bland cars I saw only a handful of Saabs, most as we were driving across Ontario, so I wasn’t able to take many photos.

However, my luck changed in the elegant Muskoka town of Gravenhurst, we’d stopped for the obligatory tourist wobble around and giant ice-cream when I saw not only one, but two classic Saabs parked outside a realtor on one of the town’s side streets.

The first was a beautiful red, well cared for 900 classic Turbo convertible whilst to other was a poorly looking black 9000 Aero. Rust had set in on the front and rear arches, the paintwork dull and interior used for a storage space, but in my eyes, well worth rescuing – if I lived in Canada I couldn’t have resisted attempting to save it though.

A number of nice 9-3 Aeros around and a 9-7 spotted in downtown Toronto, but not much else, I’ll try and do better next time.

Pocket Money Saabs

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We’re talking circa five hundred pounds here, less than a single Hirsch alloy wheel. Take your pick, a gorgeous 9-3 convertible for lazy Summer days, a practical 9-5 Sportwagon for throwing the mountain bikes in at the weekend, or just a super classic 9000 city sleeper.

I’ve always been intrigued by the value of older Saabs – luxury cars that someone once paid around £30k for. They may have plenty of miles under their belts, but they’ve also got plenty of life left in them. If you look carefully and buy one that’s been loved and looked after, they’ll offer years of ridiculously comfortable, reliable, safe and above all, enjoyable driving.

They’re cheap enough to have a bit of fun with too – tune, lower, paint, anything really, just use your imagination and get stuck in, there’s really not much to lose.

I haven’t added any links to the above Saabs, but they’re all currently for sale on Autotrader or EBay at around £500 – yes, really.

Everyday People

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I love it when I see a truly classic Saab being used everyday, it’s how it should be.

I’ve seen this gorgeous white 96 being driven around our neighbourhood a few times recently, and it makes me smile every single time. Last week, I spotted it in car park, so I quickly stopped, grabbed my camera and took a few snaps.

It’s in great condition, it’s pretty much factory standard, original wheels, original interior, original everything, it’s just a lovely classic Saab. I don’t know much more about it, but if I get a chance to speak to the owner sometime, I will.

What I did find interesting though, is that when I parked my 9-3 next to its forefather for a family photo, I was amazed by the shear difference in size, the 9-3 looked absolutely huge in comparison, sexy, but huge.

It also made me think about just how important it is, to not only look after and cherish our classic Saabs, but to drive and enjoy them too, after all, it’s what the great people of Trollhättan designed and built them for.

A Saab UR for today. Taking Saab back to its past, for the future.

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Every time I see a photograph of the original Saab UR, I can’t help wondering what it would be like if it were produced today. So I had a play.

A 2 door Saab Coupe with exquisite heritage and design detailing that honours the original.

A collaboration with Hirsch for ultimate performance, handling, braking and gorgeous alloys. And not to forget, a large helping of Saab interior styling with superior, full leather heated seats and you have a car i’d be seriously happy with.

And what would it look like with the beautiful 9-3 headlights?

svss_SAAB UR for 2013 with 9-3 Lights

Saab vs Scepticism Archives Part Three. Saab 900 Classic

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So, the weather in the UK continues to be erratic; six inches of snow yesterday – great photo opportunities are few and far between.

All 3 of our Saabs are desperate for a clean, but the one needing most attention is the 900, it needs to be driven and enjoyed. So while we wait patently for the weather to change, I thought I’d do another Archive, this time in honour of the 900 classic.

Over the years, I’ve collected literally hundreds of 900 images, but there are always a handful that make me stop and say WOW, these are them. If yours is featured, a huge thanks, you kept a dream alive until I managed to get hold of one myself.

It’s such an iconic car, and the one I most associate with Saab’s heritage. There are endless details I fall in love with every time I see one: the curve of the windscreen, the clamshell bonnet with its enticing air intake, the Aero bodykit and 3 spoke alloys, all burn powerful visual memories into the mind. It’s a Saab not easily forgotten.

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I couldn’t do an archive without featuring my own 900 classic. Possibly not as sharp as some of the others featured, but one that I can’t wait to drive again soon, roof down, distinctive 900 burble sounding reassuringly at every touch of the throttle, yep, the 900 is a truly amazing car.

9000 Aero. The stuff Saab dreams are made of

My love affair with Saab began back in the 1990’s when I fell head over heels for the 9000 Aero. It was, and still is an absolutely stunning car, and features one of the most beautifully unique interiors I’d ever seen. However, being young, I couldn’t dream of owning one for a few years, so I opted for an old metallic green 9000i instead.

Although it had a good specification, it wasn’t how I’d imagined a Saab to be, and I soon understood my mistake; I’d bought a normally aspired Saab, one without a Turbo, so I quickly part exchanged it for a 900 Turbo Convertible. Since then, I’ve owned 9 more Saabs, but have never been back to a 9000, and I’ve kind of regretted that.

Since beginning the High Mile Club, I’ve had a few 9000’s appearing in my Inbox, each with their own story and each as gorgeous as the next. William from Sweden owns 2 amazingly beautiful examples; a 2.3 Turbo CSE and an Aero, and he’s been kind enough to let me post the photos. It’s only covered a mere 211,112 Km so he’s got plenty more years to really enjoy the Aero, and with these seats, who wouldn’t.

Seeing this 9000 Aero has just reignited my desire to own one some day, and I think it’s going to have to be a black Aero with that gorgeous leather interior.

I even love the original 9000 Aero brochure still too.

The stuff Saab dreams are made of.