The previous 9-5 rolled on for over a decade since its last major overhaul. Now that Saab has cast off it General Motors noose and is now under the control of Dutch supercar maker Spyker, good things can be expected for the future. The first new model since the transition may still leave some wary as it’s the first model under the new management, but it looks to be the beginning of a reinvigoration of the iconic Swedish brand. This 9-5 will still carry over parts of the GM Epsilon II platform, while it does ride on a new chassis and has new sheet metal. The current 9-5 makes due with the same engine offerings as the 9-3, though this will likely change in future versions. The 9-5 offers the all wheel drive also available on the 9-3; however, a new adaptive suspension system will help differentiate the two models.
Together with a lower curb weight and other chassis improvements, the handling is noticeably improved over earlier models and most will find the ride quality reasonably smooth with a comfortable interior.
Bodystyles: Sedan, Wagon
Engines: 2.0L turbocharged I-4, 2.8L turbocharged V-6
Transmissions: 6-speed manual, 6-speed automatic
Models: Linear, Vector, Aero
Everything. The 2010 Saab 9-5 is new from the ground up, riding on a new chassis with all-new bodywork and interior. Engines and drivetrains are carried over from the Saab 9-3, but are matched to a new adaptive suspension. Adaptive Cruise Control and Traffic Sign Recognition are now both offered. Engines are bio-fuel compatible.
The exterior of the 2010 Saab 9-5 is entirely new, but contains classic brand elements including a three-hole nose, flat roof and elongated C-pillars, though all with a modern twist. Big wheels and blacked-out pillars complete the modernist look.
Like the exterior, the Saab 9-5’s interior is all-new for 2010. Leather will be standard, along with automatic climate control and a head-up display. Navigation, an upgraded stereo and adaptive cruise control will all be optional. Saab’s Night Panel feature returns.
The 2010 Saab 9-5 will launch with a 2.8-liter turbocharged V-6 engine producing 300 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque and is available only with all-wheel drive. A 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine will be available on the 2011 model with 220 horsepower and will be available with both front-and all-wheel drive. Both manual and automatic six-speed transmissions will be available, along with optional adaptive suspension.
Driver and passenger front and side airbags are standard on the 9-5, along with full-length side curtain airbags. Multiple electronic aids will be standard including Traction and Stability Control, Lane Departure Warning and a head-up display.
16 mpg city/27 mpg highway
- Great styling
- Lots of features
- Great handling
- Emphasis on safety
- Top trim level only at launch
- Potentially unstable company
- Unproven quality and reliability
- Pricey for the segment
The car that could save Saab
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