Saab Prices New 9-3 Turbo X Deep in WTF Territory

Justin Berkowitz
by Justin Berkowitz

There are times when you think the people running GM's Saab division are hampered by the corporate handcuffs. And there are times when you say "someone's been hitting the Glögg a bit too hard." This is one of those occasions. At the New England Auto Show, Saab has just debuted the Turbo X, with its fancy new AWD system and 280 horses (that's an extra 30). Great! If any car has been screaming for all wheel-drive, it's the Saab 9-3. And why not Boston? Saab's remaining 11 new car customers are all Ivy League college professors seducing students deep in the snowy Northeast, and they need the AWD for their weekend ski trips. So far, so good. Now the bad news: it's $42,510. That's more money than an Audi A4 3.2 Quattro, Infiniti G35x, or BMW 335xi. At an insanely high price like that, it's no wonder they are only importing 600 of them. If you're one of the few, you can get it in any color you want, so long as it's black.

Justin Berkowitz
Justin Berkowitz

Immensely bored law student. I've also got 3 dogs.

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  • Trollhattan Saab Trollhattan Saab on Nov 29, 2007

    I was hoping they’d keep this down to the $40,000 mark so was disappointed when they slotted over it.

    This is the intro vehicle for the XWD system and comes with the full XWD kit, including the whizz-bang electronic LSD that splits power between the rear wheels. Order an XWD Aero next year and the eLSD will be a $2,000 option.

    I’ve done a full, very full, article on the Turbo X, including some video in a full XWD-equipped car being driven by one of the Saab Performance Team guys.

    This is going to be a great car, but I fear the sub-300hp figure and the post-$40K price is going to scare off some of the people that it would have won over.

    And Justin, they’re only bringing 600 in because it’s a worldwide limited edition of 2,000. The US is getting the biggest allocation, followed by the UK with 500.

  • Brock_Landers Brock_Landers on Nov 30, 2007

    quote: Saab justifies the high price based on their claim that the XWD is an industry-first AWD system that can modulate torque to each individual rear wheel to help control cornering attitude. Industry first??? 12 years ago in 1995 Nissan introduced the R33 Skyline GT-R with ATTESA-ETS Pro AWD system. Where ATTESA-E-TS (since 1989 R32 GT-R) controls the front to rear torque-split, the Pro is also capable of left-and-right torque split to the rear wheels. This is done via an active rear limited-slip differential. A lot time passed, then came the Evo with similar system, then Acura and now Saab.

  • Scottdh Scottdh on Dec 02, 2007

    WOW! If "flaming" cars were as reprehensible as "flaming the site, its authors or fellow commentators", at least half of these people would be permanently banned. Let me get this straight. For a sticker price of $42,510.00 (and who pays sticker?), 600 people in the U.S. (2000 people worldwide) will be able to acquire a limited edition version of the car which: A) has taken top honors in both the offset frontal and side impact collision tests by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) 3 years in a row (sorry, Volvo, but, being the 2nd safest car one can buy isn't necessarily a bad thing), B) offers free scheduled maintenance for 3 years or 36,000 miles-whichever comes first (like Audi USED TO), C) has a 5-year/100,000 mile powertrain warranty (MB, BMW, anyone, anyone?), D) delivers 100 hp per litre, E) delivers 295 lbft. of torque at little more than 2000 RPM (and, please tell me I'm not the only one here who recognizes that low-end torque is at least as important as raw horsepower), AND, it out-slaloms a Porsche 911(?). While this may be Saab's first foray into AWD or XWD (if you don't count the ill-fated 92X or the 97X--which is SO much more than a "Trailblazer with the ignition in the middle", it isn't funny), the system being used is actually a 4th-generation Haldex system. Oh, by the way, I'm STILL waiting for someone to tell me why the 97X is the ONLY GMT 360 platform "sibling" that isn't required to carry the federally-mandated sticker that says it can roll over and kill you (if it is ONLY a "Trollblazer"). But, I digress. Still with only 60 years of FWD under their belts, I guess that's why Aspen and Vail, Colorado have never used Saabs as police cars. Oops. My bad. They have. As for the contributors who had a less than stellar experience with Saab, I ask you: #1) what car company hasn't had at least 1 dissatisfied customer; and #2) what car company gave a brand new car to a guy who gave their museum a car he drove for ONE MILLION MILES? (Oh. I know the answer to that one. It's Saab.)

  • Sjj1856 Sjj1856 on Dec 20, 2007

    I want to drive it!!! I think that the x drive system will be available on all 93 models very soon. The price is a little high, but the 280 hp in a Saab is big time power. Saab is a love/hate type car. I love my 93 and I am sure the Turbo x is something special. Price wise, I will wait until those features are available on the 93 Aero, then buy a used one (a year or 2 old with 30,000 miles or less) for less than half price. The only drawback to owning a Saab is that maintainence is very expensive (over $100 per oil change).