When we went to a SAAB meeting in Huy, Belgium in 2007, we saw 2 SAABs with a toppola structure. Then we got the thought that something would be very practical. But since a caravan was ready, we didn't think about it anymore. Nice that there is such a thing, but we don't need it ... It was our thought.
After many years and many vacations with the caravan, we decided to put it on a seasonal pitch and to become "sedentary". But since we go to the Nürburgring once a year, we have to dismantle the caravan, get it, drive to the ring and then bring it back and set it up again.
Then Peter Braun got a toppola at a manageable course. His report, pictures and many conversations inspired us to keep an eye out. It would be practical for the couple of days at the ring and we would not have had such a fuss with the caravan ...
Thanks to tips and our own research, we found what we were looking for in Holland.
Some mails and phone calls (the crucial phone call on the morning of the Troll Rally in Geisa) for the purpose of arranging an appointment had been made. Money and red number plate worried we started on Saturday morning direction Rotterdam.
After crossing some industrial areas, we reached a very contemplative street where cute family houses stand. We were warmly welcomed, with a delicious Kopje Koffie and cookies. After extensive small talk about SAAB, Toppola, etc., we started in a Daimler (!) In a commercial area we reached after 15 minute drive.
There was our dream in a rented garage in front of an 900 I Convertible.
After rollout and appraisal they agreed and the keys changed hands. Now we had to go back again, because we had not taken the number plates. Only then we could drive back to the house with the Toppola to invite the tailgate, as this does not fit into the 9-3 station wagon.
After payment, more small talk and a tasty soup it was back against 19 clock on the way home. The engine purrs as on the first day, the transmission shifts clean and thanks to air bellows support in the springs of the SAAB super on the road. You hardly notice the structure.
Many drivers overtook, braked and gave a thumbs up or even took pictures ...
The next day we brought the car to our workshop and there came the disillusionment. The structure is great, many questions were asked, but also regarding the registration and technology, but the car ...
We were already aware of many defects, the SAAB-typical Rostecken halt: all doors through, both sills on the rear wheel arch, the front fenders and a few smaller places, including a point on the A-pillar which is rusted through unsaved.
The repair would blow up any reasonable frame, so the dream with the Toppola to drive to the Nürburgring has burst for now.
It was still different. we got an equivalent car with less rust at short notice. This was then rebuilt in the workshop, exhaust new, rear brakes, air spring reinforcement and the socket for the power and lighting of the Toppola was rebuilt.
Then, in the workshop with the lift, we put the construction from one car to the other. That took an hour with a lot of peace and storytelling. Then Andi Mondays has made the interior. Then we tested if our winter tent could fit from the caravan and what luck, it fits. Thus, nothing stood in the way of the start on Thursday at the Nürburgring.
Thanks to Hans and Ando for their Saab Story! Do you also have something to tell about Saab?