SAAB News: Saab and E85 and Saab in the press

On Thursday I wrote a short article about our Saab 9-5 BioPower. Due to the high fuel prices, the ethanol Saab gains in attractiveness every day. Our friends at Saabsunited had the same idea and followed up with a post on E85. Since then, many questions have come up and few answers. Which Saab can stand E85 and which not? The question is easy to answer from the factory.

Saab 9-5 2.3t Vector Biopower, tail light
Saab 9-5 2.3t Vector Biopower, tail light

A Saab BioPower has different fuel lines and a different tank than a "normal" Saab. The engine control software is designed for multi-fuel operation. E85 is considered to be aggressive compared to fossil fuels. Saab Tuner Maptun offers a conversion kit for some Saab 9-5 and 9-3 with Trionic 7. For Trionic 5 Saab, also for the Saab 9000, and for Trionic 7 models, SKR Performance has a conversion offer. A Trionic 5 vehicle then becomes a pure ethanol vehicle.

What exactly is behind the conversion kits, whether lines are exchanged, one should ask. Because ethanol absorbs moisture over a long service life, so that lines in the BioPower Saab are made of stainless steel to prevent corrosion. Some Saab drivers have already had long experience in converting to flexi-fuel operation. Alexander from Blog SAABISM has, inspired by the articles here and on Saabsunited, one Interview made with a friend who drove easily 40.000 kilometers with a converted Saab. Maybe a little decision aid.

Incidentally, E85 is tax-privileged until the end of 2015. Only the 15% share of conventional fuel is heavily taxed, for ethanol itself only the usual value added tax applies. As fossil fuel prices will continue to rise in the medium term, upgrading to biofuel will be a tempting option.

If you are looking for a used BioPower Saab, it has only a small selection. In Bamberg there are two of them. Some new Saab 9 3 Griffin BioPower are in Kiel landed and maybe the last chance for a Griffin model.

In the German press Saab rarely shows up in the last few days. The Autobild takes note of the fight for Saab, but does not write what we do not already know. A chant on our manufacturer is in the current vintage car market.

The obituary “Stations of a crash landing” is 5 pages long and is surprisingly tendentious. Because the editorial team has a Saab 96 in its fleet and the editor-in-chief was a guest in Trollhättan at the last Saab Festival. As a table neighbor at Innovatum, he enjoyed his Köttbullar and the Saab atmosphere. Actually, you expect more Saab Spirit or objectivity, please

The basic tenor of the article is that all Saab since GM entry are just overpriced Opels and the reader suspects that the author has already finished with the brand with the introduction of the two-stroke engine based on DKW technology. I had to read the article several times in order not to perceive the negative basic tenor as an error. But even after reading it several times - it doesn't get any better. So the contribution ends up being a crash landing for the author. As a Saab fan, you can leave the € 3.20 for the magazine that I usually like in your pocket.

For GM, there was far too little Opel in each Saab, which drove the Americans to give up the brand. For the motor press it was too much in Rüsselsheim, which for years had caused the brand to be “broken”. Too bad. The consequences are known.

Text: tom@saabblog.net

12 thoughts on "SAAB News: Saab and E85 and Saab in the press"

  • Hej E85 - driver,
    does anyone run an 9.3 V6 Aero (Hirsch with 275 PS) successfully with E85 ???

  • I have to take out the Austrian Autorevue: In the current special edition there is a scrap about the 520d Efficient Dynamics: “... At first contact you are somehow reminded of an older 200d Mercedes: fabric seats, a wobbly gearshift, the bonanza effect when driving away, a righteous one Four-cylinder diesel, things that seemed long forgotten ... "

    This is how they describe the current BMW engine technology. There are some still so dt. Premium critical voices.

  • Yes, Tom, I usually like to read the Oldtimer Markt as a regular. The “obituary” (isn't that a little early?) Doesn't fit the standard of this magazine at all. It's a shame that such a bad article deals with SAAB, of all things. Result: I didn't buy the magazine out of protest. -> Demand controls supply!

  • Hallo,

    Well, I was curious about this E85 story, so I wrote to MapTun with the data of my Saab (date of manufacture Feb. 1999, engine B235E, type 9-5 2.3t SE, 170 PS). According to the answer, a conversion to E85 is possible, costs about 4000 crowns (ie about 400 Euro, plus minus, exchange rate, etc.), fuel lines, seals, valve guides, etc. are no problem.

    That sounds very tempting with the gasoline prices ... but then I did the math based on my logbook, and after the interview linked by Tom here, I assumed 85% additional consumption for E27 (somewhat pessimistic). The savings don't look that great anymore - converted to the last twelve months, I would have saved between 10 and 20 euros, or always around 10% of the costs that were due for E5 refueling. Even in the past months of February and March with their over-the-top gasoline prices, only 20 and 30 euros would have jumped for me.

    So, for those who drive a lot, this is certainly an interesting thing (especially on long journeys) - not necessarily for infrequent drivers, because the absolute savings are no longer so intoxicating. Incidentally, I did not include the detours to E85 petrol stations, there are exactly three of them in Saarland. I'll wait until April before I decide.

    By the way - the Saab with E85 clearly feels more agile, the Maptun software update releases 50 Nm more torque, so that's 18% for me, and you can tell.

  • ... maybe the good man should just sit in an Opel and then in the Saab and if he does not notice any difference, he should stop writing about such things.

  • Most people only feel comfortable in their own skin if they don't somehow stand out from the crowd - this can also be confidently related to the choice of the automobile.

    I prefer people (personalities) who have nothing to do with the general "leveling off" - if this means that a car brand is also shortlisted, such as SAAB, whose vehicles have many advantages compared to the so-called competitors, is this all the more gratifying!

    The press bought by the German auto industry is meanwhile no longer taken seriously by more and more intelligent contemporaries - reality paints a different picture, especially with regard to the great technology of some brands (see also today's comment by Philmos).

  • Well, the German auto industry pays - uh, takes care - the German press better ... 😉
    (There was also a nice article about BMW and their "reimbursement for journalists" on TV)

    • Since I know that, I have to say that all the car magazines have passed. In the meantime also the Austrian, I notice no difference between the prospectuses of the automaker and the texts in the German and Austrian press.

      I take the view that I prefer to save the money for such press texts and then immediately look at the websites of the manufacturers, the information content is the same.

      Only now and then attacking Autobild a hot iron, which makes me hope again: Like all the engine problems with the German manufacturers or start-stop time delays.

      Only I missed there a substantial indication: Start stop is a big safety risk eg when turning with oncoming traffic. If I want to start fast, but the engine must first start and not just runs around and swallowed or approaching a mountain, the same problem.

      We are happy that we were able to return a BMW 318d touring. It's insanely dangerous not to be able to rely on the car to actually drive off. Or you wait forever and provoke horn concerts from the people behind you, everything you've already seen. But start-stop is cheered by the press and cars that luckily don't have that are devalued ...

      • Not every progress makes sense. Start / stop Automtik is a very dubious thing that I have noticed even when colleagues in A3. The automatic has a life of its own and always intervenes when it becomes dangerous. For minimal fuel savings, the degree of danger increases. But brings just special points in the evaluation scheme of the car tester. In how far the real life can orientate everyone can find out for themselves. It works closely with the industry.
        @ Tom
        Your charity project is getting better and better. SAAB Leipzig is also there. Great thing, keep it up!

  • Hi Tom,

    one day not in the block and I miss you! First of all many thanks for your constant bustle and informing.

    Years ago I gave it up to annoy me about the car press, because they all have their pets and the big ones are better advertisers than the little ones. Press is nunmal synonymous commercially. If you want individuality in our mass society, you should not uniform yourself, you should drive SAAB. Even with GM parts, a SAAB is something special.

    • That's exactly how I feel. Yesterday I was pretty nervous. No post on my favorite blog :-(. SAAB and the blog is just as important as the daily espresso.
      Without it does not work!

  • So with the overpriced Opel is a fairy tale, Saabs use 70 to 83% own parts, that has worked out or presented Top Gear. When I look at VW, where from Skoda to Audi, Lamborghini and Bentley is always the same installed, Saabs are compared to 100% Saab.

    What is certain of GM at Saab, are the SIDs that constantly produce pixel errors

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