If you're a Saabphile with a little time to kill, you may want to head over to Saab's official website -- the automaker recently launched an interactive configurator tool for its all-new 2010 9-5 sedan.
For the most part, the application is a bit primitive. At this point, it allows us only to choose between seven paint hues and seven wheel choices. Colors include Jet Black, Fjord Blue, Glacier Silver, and three different variations of grey. You'll apparently have your choice of three different 17-inch wheel patterns, two 18-inch designs, and the top-end 19-inch "turbine" wheels.
Saab won't let us play with the interior color schemes, but the 9-5's cabin is as stylish as its exterior. Recessed instrument dials are illuminated in green, and LED accent lighting helps set a relaxed mood. Saab loyalists will be happy (and possibly not too surprised) to see the Night Panel function -- which dims all interior lighting save for the speedometer or telltale warnings -- returns to the new car. A 10-gigabyte internal hard drive serves as a music source, but a USB port allows for drivers to connect and listen to either MP3s loaded on flash drives or portable media players.
We wish Saab would let us fully spec-out the new car to our hearts' content, but since the webpage is designed for global audiences, options and model packages would likely differ slightly from country to country.
Even the 9-5 range itself will vary over time. At launch, only the top-end Aero trim will be available, which uses a 300-horsepower, twin-turbocharged 2.8-liter V-6 and Saab's XWD all-wheel-drive system.
Pricing for the 2010 Aero itself will start at $49,990 when it reaches dealers in July. The remainder of the 9-5 engine and model variants are expected to reach dealers later this fall as 2011 models.