12 months Saab 9-5 NG

12 months on the road with the Saab 9-5 BioPower. Opportunity for a first conclusion about the great Sweden. But beware ! Driving a Saab 9-5 carries risks and side effects. Likewise reading this report ...

We photograph the landscape. Or?
We photograph the landscape. Or?

The Saab has seen a lot in the last few months. Was criss-crossing the republic, had a film crew on board and switched at short notice even the indicator. His car life was not boring.

A Saab is a Saab, is a Saab ...

No one warned me in 1992 when I bought a Saab for the first time. With a Saab 900 Turbo you unwittingly got to know strangers. At the gas station, in parking lots ... Saab conversations everywhere. Over the years and the Saab models that followed, the conversations became fewer. To…

... which 9-5 moved into everyday life. A truck stop just before Hamburg. The Saab stashes fuel on the way north. A man with a camera heads straight for me. Would he be allowed to take a photo? Is that the new Saab? Yes, the Saab is not allowed and is not new ... which does not interest him in any way. Photo taken, Saab Fan shines, is happy. And so it continues. With extreme excesses. Two crazy stories:

Parking in the head ...

The A3, just before Nuremberg. It's a summer morning, just after 06:00 a.m. I have an appointment very early, the Saab hums peacefully at 130 km / h towards the metropolitan region. A quiet morning until an Insignia docks. The autobahn is empty, only Saab and Opel.

The box with the flash sticks to the bumper. Civil strife? Speed ​​limit? Missed TÜV appointment? Very slowly, after a small eternity, the Insignia passes by. The young Opel-driving couple almost drop their eyes. Before the Saab is reeved and stepped on the brakes. So that you can once again look at Saab, which must now pass.

Saab spotting on Opel Art. Reversing in the head. Would be good.

Sweden among themselves ...

A red traffic light, a turn lane. The Saab 9-5 is waiting for the green phase. Suddenly a infernal squeal on the parallel track, accompanied by angry honking. A Volvo XC90 has discovered the Saab and made a fierce spontaneous stop.

That drivers behind him cuss, honk, brake, are not interested. Saab is more important. Both thumbs up, Volvo drivers can find Saab good. Incredible.

So it goes on. Especially the drivers of the other Swedish brand, especially when they are sitting in an XC90 or V70, reflect on the Saab. If you are looking for an inconspicuous car, you shouldn't buy a Saab 9-5, there are better vehicles.

One of my favorite Italians has a restaurant on a golf course. There the guaranteed only Saab is parked among a horde of Porsches, Maseratis and the premium herd from Munich, Ingolstadt, Stuttgart. The only car in the parking lot that has finger and nose prints on the side windows after a short time is ... not difficult to guess. Or?

Saab 9-5 and manageability

You warned me. Countless people who are of the opinion that a car longer than 5 meters in the city center is not drivable. Parking garages are hell, Germany is peppered with small, narrow streets where there is no getting through. They saw me already stranded with my thick ship, wedged in between the walls of houses beyond recovery.

None of this happened. Park assist rear and front, reversing camera, and a handiness that you would not expect behind the vehicle. Parking garages are free, as are motorway construction sites. The package is right. And, honestly, I would have bought the box if it had been even longer.

In addition, 9-5 driving is relaxing. On the autobahn you can rediscover the courtesy and consideration of pilots of other brands. Out in the fast lane? Usually not a problem. Even the flying garland daytime driving light group from Ingolstadt grants the Saab a big gap, wants to see what's going on. Go then !

Saab 9-5 & consumption

You can burn more than one tank of fuel on the Kiel - Frankfurt route. With pleasure. Turbo runs, Turbo drinks. Because the turbo with its deer performance increase can run faster than 250 things. If you want! But the Saab can also be economical.

It is exactly 620 kilometers from my carport to the Saab center in Kiel. The Saab has automatic, 19 ″ tires and is a heavy box. Can you get to Kiel with one tank of fuel? You come when you let the speed oscillate somewhere between 130 and 150. The consumption is an 8 in the first place, the remaining range is more than 100 kilometers. So you could go to the Swedish ferry in Kiel and continue with the rest of the tank up to the Stallbacka in front of the Saab plant. You could.

Saab 9-5 & addictive

The Saab 9-5 NG spoils for other cars. Sustainable. Why is it? It is the sum of all things and can only be understood once you have “experienced” the car. The 2 liter turbo developed mainly in Trollhättan is a fascinating, powerful engine. With the relatively light front-wheel drive version, it deals more spontaneously than the V6 can. That's one side.

The other side are the chassis with a long wheelbase, wide track and great handling. And the Saab feeling in the interior. The instruments are a reminiscence of the 9000, everything is clearly defined and arranged soothing. Did you sit down in the excellent sports seats, press the start button, you do not want to get off. You want to drive, drive, drive.

Saab in the snow

It's snowing, and snow is something of the natural environment for every Saab. How does the 9-5 work in snow and ice?

Surprisingly good. The front-wheel drive always has grip, the road is fantastic. Not every car from Trollhättan could convince me that way. The package of seat heating and air conditioning provides comfort in the interior, the chassis provides a clear feedback on the road conditions. Typical Saab.

What does not fit are the fast-polluting side windows. The ice that can form between the rear window and the boot lid and then causes rattling noises. But there must be something to complain about.

Saab 9-5 & quality

There are materials in the interior that are owed to the red pencil. Some things could have been made better, more valuable. These are little things, because there is a lot of love in 9-5. It is - after more than 20 years - the first Saab that does not, but not at all, tend to rattle. With one exception. See Saab in the snow.

In principle, the Saab 9-5 is a traveling safety cage. The extremely strong structure is noticed in every situation; felt quality that lasts a long time. No defects in 12 months?

Yes, the Lightbar gave up. No isolated case, penetrating moisture and vibrations kill the LED part. It is beautiful - not durable and robust. The values ​​of the rest of the vehicle are correct.

Buy again?

There are vehicles that you love. Not every Saab in recent years was a real love, but more owed to brand loyalty. The 9-5 is an automotive love affair, like many Saabs were before it. Buy again? What a question!

36 thoughts on "12 months Saab 9-5 NG"

  • blank

    Great report, find me completely again. Mine is just a TiD with the 160 PS, for the CH but fully enough. And on my trip to Trollhatten I could also let him fly; 216 km / h after the satnav, not bad for 2t weight and only 160 PS. Buy, yes I would buy it again immediately!

  • Great report, Tom, which makes you want more. For a good four weeks, after many months of weighing and deliberation, I have been driving a 9-5 TTiD (the red one you presented here in autumn) and I am totally happy that I made this “unreasonable” purchase. As you write: life is too short to be just reasonable. I can not only sit in it for hours, but also in front of it, and be happy like a child!

  • blank

    You've done something, Tom. I've been hooked for a long time. Yesterday evening I drove extra 60 kilometers to the Saab dealer and spent a lot of time in the yard. Seven (!) 9-5 NG are there around. Actually, it is completely unreasonable to buy such a device. Actually. , ,

    • The car is a concept that is largely withheld from us Europeans, so thankful that GM has allowed it. A “middle class” car with the interior of the upper class. Quasi the long version of the Insignia, plus Saab. Competitors only offer their long versions in China and possibly the USA, e.g. the Volvo S70L or the A6L.

      In Europe, rear seat means automatically luxury class from 70000 Euro or Van.

    • Life is just too short to be reasonable. Yesterday I pushed at least one good thing, or
      Today 400 kilometers 9-5 driven, since 05: 50 on the way. Back over country roads, the A3 was always tight. Every kilometer a pleasure, pure driving pleasure!

  • blank

    Have the same change and thus made the same experiences.

    If Tom does not perceive the size difference in the question as a disadvantage, then he will probably rather avoid urban areas with the car.

    But who would blame him for this car?

    The sides fare worse than the bumpers. My SAAB now looks like hail is falling horizontally. Again and again some idiots knock in their doors. To the Ko ...

    • The truth is probably somewhere in the middle ... Of course, one (unconsciously perhaps) avoids old parking garages and prefers to visit modern, spacious facilities. Ever because the doors then stay intact. Or you park where you think the Saab is safe. In individual parking bays, with grass verges on the left and right - and prefer to walk an additional 50 meters ...
      But, joking aside: 5 meters are 5 meters, very clear. They can not be talked away. What I wanted to express about the maneuverability is a felt small tropic, a simple handling in the parking business, as you would not have suspected behind this car.

    • Also individually. I park 99% of the time along any of the roads, so luckily I do not have such dents. But always too small parking spaces. Only this morning again. In spite of trying. Yuck. Only consolation: Just looked back in a sevens BMW, and actually does not really have more space for the rear passengers and is even longer _____________________ rums.

    • Is with me even so with the dents and scratching the sideways pure hewn. Unfortunately, I find that only at the next car care again.

      Otherwise, I am (except for the snow in the trunk) completely satisfied with our exotic great 9-5TTiD.

      Flying is fun!

  • With the Saab 9-5 Ng on vacation, it's time for a Southern family to sneak on the highway all the time, and then, as we drove past with our blue 9-5 ng, we took photos and made us friendly; -).

  • Why did not try to build the car as an Opel, I do not understand.

    to length: I can not believe it. When switching from 9-3 I to 9-5 I, the number of suitable parking spaces has already shrunk significantly. With 5 m you are just over the usual length, which settles down so by parking and parking along the streets. How does that work?

  • Without question, a great report. But love can blind you. Personally, I find the 9-5 NG too massive. The handiness of the 9-5 I is missing,
    Now a shitstorm of the 9-5 II fans will probably pour over me. But I can easily stand that.

    Greetings to the SAAB community, which in the majority no
    .9-5 II drives ..


  • Hi Tom,

    Thank you for the great report. He reads very well and even your article infected with the enthusiasm of the car.

    There is only one car left that has such a “must-have effect” on me and that comes from the USA. It might sound naive, but I love this vehicle just because of all the articles and opinions that I always read here on the blog. If I manage to test drive one of these at some point, then I think it is very unlikely (based on what I've read) that this “love” will fizzle out. I just hope that there will then be a selection of vehicles and that I can take one home with me.

    Whenever I see an 9-5 NG, whether on the highway or wherever, I'm just as crazy about it, trying to make my wife's Saab tasty and secretly envy the drivers for her vehicle.

    Here are three little questions about your 9-5NG:

    Are there no problems with tuning in terms of the durability of the engine and especially the transmission? My main concern here is mileage> 200tkm, because I can imagine buying such a cross-country skier.

    8, xl / 100km when driving slowly is all well and good, but I actually always “fly” over the motorway. Is the consumption then still within limits or do you have to reckon with> 15 l / 100km?

    Do you have any problems with the front-wheel drive in the winter, even on steeper roads and a bit more snow? I'm personally averse to pairing higher engine power (especially torque) with automatic and only front-wheel drive.

    Best regards,

    • Dear Schü, the combination 2.0 liter turbo petrol engine and automatic is unbeatable. Especially in terms of durability, it is the best buy. In the testing of our Hessian friends, the engines had a few months ago already more than 400.000 on the clock and are still running. Hirsch Tuning is no problem, the 260 PS are quite a few of the possibilities that can be achieved.
      In a fast flight you can consume 15 liters, but you have to be very fast on the way
      The front wheel drive is on snow (with Michelin) first cream, great traction, there is nothing negative to tell!

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        Madness - then they are really robust. You can also buy one with 200tkm.
        And I was glad that my 1.2 TDI has kept 150tkm.
        And the consumption…. Well, how often do you fly low on the autobahn.
        Let's see what's left in 1-2 (3) years ago.

  • blank

    Makes you want more SAAB

  • Tom, a really good article where I can find 100%.
    Did my first 9-5 NG Diesel (2010) come to 170.000 KM for an 9-5 Biopower and I hope that I can drive with this car to the end of my Burufskarriere. This last 9-5 is much better than 2010.
    Have to say that you have made many improvements over these two years.

  • All in all, I can sign it that way.
    But the consumption under 9 liter I experienced only on a 600Km long highway driving. In the mix, it is well above 10 liters.
    The quality was probably also “fluctuating”. Electrically or electronically I had no problems. The quality of the interior materials was also top. But the chassis gradation (dampers, springs, 245/40 tires was annoying. Likewise, the rust prevention on chassis parts, exhaust and partly on the body floor could be improved to say the least. The taillights and the tape in between were never really tight. (Always fogged up in the cold), and the trunk flap is a smooth, faulty construction. The rainwater is led directly into the trunk.
    The bottom line is a rare, beautiful, fast, spacious and lovable car that can be forgiven for these little “carelessnesses”. One must not forget that there was hardly any time to make improvements to this vehicle that were still going into series production. I really enjoyed driving it.

    • I drive as a company car 3er GT. After each rain, a thoroughly careful opening of the tailgate is announced (as far as possible), otherwise the trunk is under water.
      BMW says this is due to the design ...

      • ... it really is. That's pretty much the only thing that annoys me about the 9000 and it didn't get any better with the CS / CSE either.
        Great report on the 9-5, too bad that he came too late.

  • Can I give you a little tip about the lightbar? I would try Stycast - this is a sealant that I have used in the laboratory to seal many parts that are permanently exposed to moisture or wetness. Perhaps buy privately and leave it to the workshop you trust for overhaul. But before that you should practice ...

    And as far as consumption is concerned ... 150 km / h is a very comfortable speed if you don't have any deadline pressure ...

    • Every tip is welcome. Since yesterday, one of the taillights is no longer completely dry, probably due to the heavy rain of the last week. Seems to be one of the 9-5 problems ...

      • ... not only with the "new" 9-5 ... ;-(

        • blank

          The taillights of my chrome glasses are dry. The front xenons are often fogged up from the inside ...

          Melting Ice Cubes, is this intent or not?

  • blank

    Hi Tom,
    Thank you for the report. I can only confirm each line.
    However, the biopower needs significantly more….
    Pure addictive potential. Even my wife is thrilled….

    • blank

      With E10 I have a consumption between 8,5 and 9,5, with E85 it is max. 12.5 liters / a00 km

      • This fits in approximately with what I see as consumption. Instead of E10 Super Plus comes in the tank, with Hirsch advisable.

  • Very nice article …… 🙂

    ... I can also confirm that with the Volvo X drivers here in town ... at least two XC90 drivers (old model) keep craning their necks when they see my troll coming towards them ... 😉

    • Interesting: It seems to be only the drivers of the big (classic?) Volvos who absolutely reflect on the 9-5. The smaller series don't even look ...

  • Nice report, time is that even a 9-5 II strays into my fleet.

  • Thank you very much for this great report! I can only totally agree with that. At least once a week I am asked if this is the “new” Saab. Sometimes it is almost a bit embarrassing to notice the interested, sometimes admiring looks of other drivers.

    For me, the 9-5 NG is the best Saab that has ever existed. Every meter driven is a real pleasure. Distances are shrinking too much to enjoyment stages that are too short. "How, are we already there ?!"
    Even in traffic jams, the 9-5 has its very own quality - so you can adore the pretty interior in peace and quiet and rummage through the submenus of the vehicle settings

    I would buy it again anytime! Of course there is (despite the rose-colored glasses) something to complain about here and there. After all, the car had a difficult birth and little chance of getting rid of its “teething troubles”. The facelift - if it had existed - would have further perfected the car. But when you consider the conditions under which the 9-5 was created, one can only salute the men from THN. Good job!

  • blank

    I can only press what Tom wrote. In August last year I also bought a 9-5 NG Biopower with a Hirsch performance upgrade. He stands out everywhere. When I drove to my place of work in the morning, a security guard called out to his colleague: “Look at the new Saab”.
    The long-distance journey last year to southern France was a recovery. But there are also minor flaws. When my passenger unstrapped and got out, the tinkling that no belt was put on, did not stop. Only a stop, engine off and on again, helped.
    Or the horror message that the oil level is too low, I was twice in France vacation indicated. Each on return trip in almost the same place at 1000 m height. The oil level was always alright. But by and large the joy of the fantastically driven vehicle far outweighs.

    • So far I don't know these “little problems”. It is important that the software is up-to-date, as some errors were cured after the end of production 🙂

    • blank

      My TTiD also has that with the oil level reports, it was new to me that it is the same with the petrol engines. The return channel that sits in front of the float in the oil pan seems to be too thin, so the oil builds up and the float goes down ... Drilling should help but that is expensive because Saab no longer intervenes financially ...

  • Hi Tom,
    a great report - I can only agree with everything: a real Saab addiction factor!
    Just a gigantic Saab!
    Saabian greetings

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