For almost two years, the Turbo X in our fleet, and Blogger's toy has lost none of its original appeal. The Saab is probably the last compact four-wheel facsimile from Trollhättan with a supercharged V6 under the bonnet. Because the trend is everywhere in the automotive world to small engines, with four or fewer cylinders.
The environment and the wallet may be pleased, the automobile gourmet accepts it with horror. A problem of the Turbo X is the heat sensitivity in the summer. If the temperatures climb above 25 degrees, then the diva and zips refuses performance, Remedy must be, and the first thought goes to Switzerland. Hirsch Performance offered a performance kit that included 20 additional horses and a larger intercooler. It goes, clearly, to the container for hot air. An appropriately sized intercooler works wonders and eliminates the thermal discomfort.
It is an open secret that Hirsch Performance has an “iron reserve” for emergencies or special customers even when parts are sold out. Well, in a nutshell, the blogger is neither an emergency, nor is Hirsch seen as the preferred person. All requests, through different channels, didn't help. Even three years of positive and free reporting, with a strong Swiss readership, were no trump card. Hirsch stayed hard. Just so that it is not misunderstood: I didn't want to give anything for free or at a special price, I just wanted to buy the performance kit. So an alternative was needed, even if it wasn't over.
The Saab Parts AB, my preferred supplier for original parts, couldn't help either, so I ended up looking at Maptun. The corresponding intercooler was available in Sweden, and Till from SU took care of it. He runs the German Maptun agency, and the LLK was in Bamberg within a few days Saab center delivered.
Why the Turbo X suffers from thermal problems becomes clear at the latest when you see the original intercooler removed. The original part, it comes from the supplier Valeo, is at best a toy. Compared to the Maptun solution, it is clearly undersized and - quite frankly - at least qualitatively questionable in a direct comparison. The new LLK, on the other hand, looks massive, carved from the whole, and is reminiscent of the quality that Saab built in the 900 Turbo as an intercooler decades ago.
In principle, you can't go wrong if you give your engine a larger-sized intercooler. The old Saab 900 soft turbo versions didn't have any, an upgrade did the car noticeably good. This has not changed in the past few years because the basic rules have remained the same: cooler air brings better performance, better combustion and thermal stability. So a great intercooler is always money well invested.
Installation and removal takes a little more than an hour in the workshop. The new intercooler fits 99% perfectly, we only had to improvise slightly with one attachment. With the LLK, not a millimeter of space is wasted, and the next summer with the heat in the Rhine-Main area can come. The fact that, in theory, you could get more power from the Turbo X with the new intercooler - boost pressure of up to 1.5 bar should be possible - is another matter. Because that wasn't the point.
One more addendum. There was still the thing about Hirsch Performance. The Swiss volunteered days before the installation, and it would have been possible to obtain a performance kit from Hirsch. At a friendly - fair price. But Maptun had already delivered and I had no desire to cancel the purchase from Maptun. And somehow I had resigned myself to not being one of the most important customers in St. Gallen. Other bloggers do, but not me. Honestly - I can live with it.