Junkyard Find: 2005 Saab 9-2X Linear

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin
Weird examples of badge engineering! Who doesn’t love them? Bad people, that’s who, and so I do my best to find such vehicles while I’m exploring car graveyards. The badge-engineering world includes Isuzus badged as Hondas, Hondas badged as Isuzus, Mitsubishis badged as Dodges, Dodges badged as Mitsubishis, Chevrolets badged as Saabs, and — of course — Subarus badged as Saabs. Here’s an example of the notorious Saabaru, found in the Subiest region of the United States: Denver, Colorado.
Even though Coloradans love Saabs nearly as much as they love Subarus, the 9-2X has been tough for me to find in my local junkyards. Prior to today’s Junkyard Find, I’d documented just this lone silver 9-2X Linear, and that was two years ago. I’ve seen a few others, but they were WRX-based Aero models and had been stripped clean (presumably by Subaru fanatics) before I got there.
While the 9-2X Aero was a Saabized (Saabified? Saab-o-lated?) Subaru WRX, complete with wild turbocharged engine, the 9-2X Linear was just an ordinary Impreza hatchback with a somewhat nicer interior and a different grille. Still, this 2.5-liter boxer four made 165 horses, so these cars aren’t punitively slow.
You could get this car with a manual transmission, but… nope.
The Impreza got more vet’s-waiting-room-style interior materials, while the 9-2X had a more Swedish-influenced look inside.
Why did it end up here? Maybe a head gasket, maybe just lots of miles and low resale value for Saabs (and “Saabs”) these days.
ROAD-BLISTERING PERFORMANCE, Y’ALL!If you must have more junkyardization in your day, check out the Junkyard Home of the Murilee Martin Lifestyle Brand™, where you’ll get links to more than 2,000 additional Junkyard Finds, Junkyard Gems, and Junkyard Treasures.
Murilee Martin
Murilee Martin

Murilee Martin is the pen name of Phil Greden, a writer who has lived in Minnesota, California, Georgia and (now) Colorado. He has toiled at copywriting, technical writing, junkmail writing, fiction writing and now automotive writing. He has owned many terrible vehicles and some good ones. He spends a great deal of time in self-service junkyards. These days, he writes for publications including Autoweek, Autoblog, Hagerty, The Truth About Cars and Capital One.

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  • Lisa Webb Lisa Webb on Sep 05, 2022

    I own this car, it is my transportation. As I am looking to sell to buy a car higher for my back I'm finding out much more about it. Help me please. Do I sell it or hang onto it. So much excitement over ones at junkyard's. I bought 5 yrs ago for $3,100. Had new water pump & I have put in new Cat con, sensor. Just wondering if I should hang onto it. I live Reno Tahoe, good snow car. Help car guys please!

  • Scott Scott on Feb 25, 2023


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  • The Oracle This thing got porky quick.
  • Kwi65728132 I'll grant that it's nicely kept but I'm not a fan of the bangle butt designs, and I know better than to buy a used BMW while living anywhere in the world other than in the fatherland where these are as common as any Honda or Toyota is anywhere else.
  • ChristianWimmer When these came out I thought they were hideous: now they’ve grown on me. This one looks pretty nice. Well-maintained, low mileage and some good-looking wheels that aren’t super fancy but not cheap-looking or boring either, they are just right.
  • Aja8888 Someday in the far away future, all cars will look the same, people will be the same color, dogs will be all mixed beyond recognition, and governments will own everything. That car looks like my son's Hyundai Tucson without badges.
  • Tassos Of course, what the hell did you expect? A SERIOUS, BEAUTIFUL car you can ACTUALLY USE AS YOUR DAILY DRIVER???............. NOOOOO, THIS IS TIM WE ARE TALKING ABOUT. SO HE FINDS SOME OBSOLETE POS WHICH IS 22 years old, .............AND HE PURPOSELY MISSES THE BEAUTIFUL MODEL, THE Classical Beauty E39 that ended in 2003. ...........So he uses his column as a WASTEBASKET once again, to throw the first year of BMWs BANGLED 5 series (as in the INFAMOUS CHRIS BANGLE WHO SCREWED UP THE DESIGN ROYALLY). ................................................ As Dr. Evil, Fake Doctor Jill Biden would scream at the top of her voice, so her senile idiot husband could hear her, "Good Job, (Tim)! You answered all the questions and ticked all the boxes!" ..... KEEP UP THE S---Y work, Tim!