In a roundabout way (again) to Saab

A man named Tom - no, not that Tom , but a namesake, who sometimes calls himself tom7364 for differentiation purposes (although there is no need to comment on his date of birth, certainly not sympathetically) - Saab enthuses. And only for less than 8 (in words: eight) years, although his love for the brand was kindled almost 25 years ago. How can that be?

Saab 9-5 2.3t Vector, so far 274.000 kilometers
Saab 9-5 2.3t Vector, so far 274.000 kilometers


I come from a typical poor but clean civil servant's household and cars are basically useful objects for my parents. And too expensive. The brand doesn't care. In my childhood they drive VW, Fiat and Mitsubishi. Always and basically in the accountant equipment. The first car my parents bought is - not surprisingly - a so-called savings beetle. I pick him up at the age of 3 with my father.

It will remain one of my most beautiful and my earliest childhood memories. Like my two grandfathers, I basically love cars, collect all Matchbox cars and know all of the car quartets inside out. Unfortunately, my parents don't support this car love. They are a little suspect to them. I'm turning 18, I'm not interested in the motorcycle driver's license. I finally want to have a car. The grandfathers (one Mercedes, the other BMW fan) have since passed away. Most of the time I have to finance my driver's license, car, insurance, taxes and petrol myself as a school student and I start my car career with a Fiat 127 and VW Beetle - of course used. And finally take over the parents' Mitsubishi. But my passion at that time - admittedly not very creative (the readers are asked not to yawn) - the usual suspects of Germanic provenance: BMW, Mercedes and Porsche.

It is spring 1990 and as a 26-year-old trainee lawyer I join the judiciary in Aachen. I immediately notice a colleague who always and everywhere appears in a double pack with his newlywed wife, also a colleague. One morning I look sideways at a distance from his wife near the court using brute force to get some garbage cans off the street. A blue, chunky monster sets back into the vacated parking space and - how could it be otherwise - the colleague gets out.

Saab 9 3 Coupe 2001
Saab 9 3 Coupe 2001

First I change my inconspicuous, secretly curious corner of my eye observation perspective and then my direction of walking, put on an innocent, friendly smile and move towards the overall work of art - whereby I always fixate the colleague, the chunky monster one after the other. The colleague stops on the right and left of the car and obviously has a need for discussion. Maybe they slept badly or he parked poorly. Or she badly cleared the garbage cans, you don't know. In any case, they are shouting at each other formidably over the roof of the blue monster. On the one hand, I conclude that they obviously haven't noticed me yet. And then, on the other hand, I instantly develop tender feelings for the chunky car. The image of a pitiful weeping child shoots before my mind's eye, above the head of which mother and father loudly accuse each other of failing to bring up a child ...

Meanwhile I notice that the poor child is called Saab. And obviously not only has bad-tempered parents, but also doesn't seem to be blessed with beauty. It looks "different" in a worrying way. I know there are other children who are also called Saab, but I never really looked at them, in my memory they are somehow funny. Only after a closer look and a professional discussion with the colleague, who has noticed me in the meantime (whereupon the discussions of young happiness died away immediately), do I learn that it is a 9000 CC 2.0i, MY 1987. The colleague is a Saab fan, knows a lot about this strange exotic brand, struggles (back then!) About the impending watering down of Saab quality through the entry of GM - I try to look knowing and in short: we have a topic and make friends. And from now on I notice his Saab and all the other sabas immediately and everywhere. And they are becoming more and more beautiful.

In autumn 1991 we founded a car pool with his wife and another colleague and the four of us went to the repetitor twice a week in Cologne. Always in the colleague's 2 CC. Although it is not a turbo, I not only feel confident and comfortable, but also briskly chauffeured. The colleague always does the driving himself. Unfortunately - who knows what (Saab) fate I could report otherwise today. In the spring of 9000 my Mitsubishi went limp and I invested all my savings in a long-standing dream: it was a new BMW 1992i (E318), sedan. I didn't even think about Saab. I absolutely want my first new car and with my budget there is not a Saab 36 (9000 at that time, strangely, I wasn't interested yet) anyway. Shortly after ordering the BMW, I learn that the colleague has ordered a 901 CSE 9000T from an EU importer. And I have my first doubts as to whether I shouldn't have taken over his “old” 2.3 CC…

But - what shall's - the BMW drives in relation to the Mitsubishi superbe and is also very reliable - it will be around 18 years in my possession and that of my wife and later ex-wife and then an ex-girlfriend (you can do that so write?) until a police vehicle literally throws him off the track during a mission. But in the spring of 1992, shortly after the BMW was purchased, there was a disturbing experience: my colleague and I were invited to a party in Bonn and we drove there with his new 9000 CSE Turbo. Already on the way there I am blown away as a passenger (what a difference to the 9000 CC vacuum and my little BMW) and, contrary to all my habits, spontaneously offer my colleague to refrain from drinking alcohol at the party and to drive us back. The colleague initially declines (because half-heartedly, as I tell myself), but cannot resist temptation at the party.

I am prepared for that, the large-scale trial with lead-free Clausthaler was worthwhile. Late at night I fly my first time with a Saab on the track. A few weeks later on the holiday trip to and through Italy, I draw my former wife's attention to every 9000 CS and CD that can be seen somewhere. Until she asks me sometime unnerved to refrain from this.

At the end of 1995, a young lawyer, I unexpectedly managed to get a larger amount of money through an extraordinary mandate, a property deal with land from my sister's (married) family. Actually, only a house purchase is to be financed from it, but at the same time the 12-year-old VW Polo makes my wife's slack. It has long had an eye on the 318i, it looks good on it. I am still under the traumatic-dreamy impression of the 9000 CSE Turbo from my former colleague, who has now lost sight of me in the East construction. On the other hand, I am very satisfied with the 318i and I also like the newly released BMW 5 Series (E39). For months I rolled the catalogs of both vehicles and surprised my wife at the time every evening with the fact that I would buy a BMW 5 Series - or rather a Saab 9000 Turbo. Until one day she asks me again to refrain from this and to finally decide.

Saab 900 1992
Saab 900 1992

After half a year's consideration, a BMW 523i (sedan) is bought. It seems that reason triumphed over the heart. Here is a modern new model with proven in-line six-cylinder, there at that time seemingly already in the years four-cylinder turbo. Downsizing still has a somewhat retarded sound at that time. I also do not regret the decision for the 523i, drive it around 8 years and 330.000 km. When he breaks down 2004, I'll unceremoniously lease a BMW 525d, MY 2004, also a sedan, which I will not warm at all. It is a soulless tractor for me and I stand the vehicle as the leasing period completely indifferent. My BMW affinity is waning from month to month and I feel it's time to change horses.

When considering an alternative to BMW in spring 2007, Saab was quickly chosen. I lost sight of the brand a bit after the 9000 was discontinued and took note of the changes in the meantime, starting with the strange number-slash salad to the ubiquitous seeming doubling. But contrary to the general assessment of the Saab community, I like the chrome glasses and in summer 2007 I buy a Saab 9-5 2.3t Vector Bio with deer, with which I have driven 274 Tkm so far, without any engine, turbocharger or transmission ever would have brought an action. I love this car and have been hesitating for over 3 years to replace it with a 9-5 NG or at all. The love for this car also rekindled my interest in its predecessor, the 9000. It all started with him for me - 901, 902, 9-3, which, in contrast to the rest of the Saab community, didn't interest me at first. Meanwhile, besides my chrome glasses, I had a rare Saab 90 MY 1987 (2007-2012) and a 901 Cabrio MY 1992 (since the beginning of 2012) for leisure and a 9-3I 2.0t Coupé MY 2001 (since the beginning of 2013) for the Dearest.

It all started with the 9000 and I am very happy that he gets at least part of the attention he deserves for the 30 anniversary.

7 thoughts on "In a roundabout way (again) to Saab"

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    Hi Tom,
    great Saabian life passion!

  • blank

    Class, written with beautiful language joke!

  • blank

    Appealing, honest and very entertaining reading that makes you addicted to more.
    "Jag älskar dig."

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    Me too. I still like my “chrome glasses” (9-5 SC Aero from 2007). After 261 km, it still runs like clockwork and doesn't look tired. I have already seen and driven a number of alternatives, the seats and thus the comfort on long journeys are still nothing.

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    So the mark of lawyers and journalists!
    Nice story!
    By the way, “Veropelung” is a wonderful word that I will immediately add to my vocabulary.

    • blank

      there are exceptions ... it could also mean: the brand of lateral thinkers, the unconventional and the deniers of status.

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