One day, when I almost had a major engine failure myself, and the hoses to my own engine were being repaired in the operating room, I literally took heart, now or never. Immediately after my release, I searched the car sales platforms.
And there it was, dark blue, with a top the same color as the car, few kilometers, manual gearshift and very inexpensive.
Birthday on December 20, 2005, place of birth Graz in Styria near Magna Steyer. Model year 2006, first use in January 2006. Bought by me in 2011 or was it 2012? That was at a time when some parted ways with their Saabs because they were afraid of the spare parts! All the better for me and the postage!
With the six-cylinder engine, which, in the best GM fashion, wasn't exactly designed to be economical. However, the convertible with this engine was and is wonderfully lazy and easy to drive. Or as auto motor und sport once described it: "The powerful, sophisticated turbo six-cylinder with its harmonious power output is the icing on the cake of this 9-3 ...... because it pulls great, always responds quickly to the gas and, if necessary, easily turns up to 6500 rpm, the V6 gives the feeling of superior motorization. On the motorway, for example, sixth gear is sufficient - for strolling through construction sites as well as for storming the Kassel mountains. "
The engine designed by Holden is actually something of elastic and thanks to the turbo, even in a gear that is actually too high, depends more than enough on the gas to easily swim along in Swiss traffic. And when it goes over a Graubünden pass instead of the Kassel mountains - for example when the Albula pass was freshly paved - but let's leave it.
That will probably not be time-barred yet.
In the meantime, the convertible has covered 190 kilometers and is still fun every day. What was it once in the Porsche advertisement?
First pleasure, then work, and then again pleasure. I feel the same way every day, but with a much cooler car! And the consumption? Is kept within astonishingly narrow limits. I drive the convertible on an average of around 9 liters of regular gasoline 95 octane per 100 kilometers. Pure short journeys of around 20 kilometers one liter more, longer journeys up to one liter less.
And am by no means an obstacle to traffic. At least not, if you believe the tin police officers who keep sending me a request for payment, unfortunately without a photo for the blog. And of course, because I hardly ever drive on German autobahns. And in Switzerland, as is well known, a speed limit of 120 is required on the motorways.
Whereby it doesn't have too many motorway sections with 120 anymore. Because, well, politics is not wanted on Tom's blog, but you all know what I mean. And yes, I also ride a bike (racers and mountain bikes) and even public transport if need be. (Incidentally, since Corona it no longer has to be since the end of February).
Of course, an older car has its quirks, including a Saab. So I had to deactivate the temperature warning display for the engine oil, because every time I was over 140 km / h on it, the display was noticeable with a fault message. (How I officially get over 140 km / h in Switzerland is a mystery to me, big scouts word of honor.)
And the seats?
Well, the convertible seats are design-related because the seat belts are not anchored to the body, clearly less comfortable than on the sedan. And the leather seats are a problem in midsummer when the convertible is open and the sun is shining at the latest at the first light signal. After 20 seconds the fried egg problem starts again, after 30 seconds you slowly start to cook down and dry out at the same time and after 40 seconds only one thing helps, finally green or close the convertible top.
And if you know Switzerland, you don't want the traffic to flow here, you want to stand still, so close the top and wait until sunset or for a large, white cloud. Then it's very stylish and comfortable. Or in winter in the Dolomites. Left and right meter high walls of snow. Minus two or three degrees, sunshine and extremely dry air. Convertible top down, down jacket on and in the truest sense of the word cool, but without freezing, from Cortina d'Ampezzo to St. Christina or just via Misurina and Toblach to Sexten or whatever.
And thanks to the wind deflector, the co-driver's hairstyle is still in place!
And what does the future of the automobile look like until, as a retired old man, I am on the road with what will hopefully be autonomous, self-driving something? Some public transport and a rental car if necessary? That is certainly the most sensible thing from an economic point of view. Especially with the horrendous parking space prices in the middle of Zurich.
But I think the convertible will drive a few more years and then, yes, what then? Looking for a younger Saab with fewer kilometers? A Fiat 500 electric? A left and right and front and back and at all with every overtaking maneuver and with every road signal beeping monster called Volvo with interior cameras that monitor the driver whether he is still roadworthy, and barred at 180 km / h if it happens again On the autobahn over the Kassel mountains and let yourself be left behind by Audis and BMWs?
An Opel Insignia that still has a few Saab genes and overlooks the fact that Opel has played a decisive role in the fact that Saab no longer exists? Or would you prefer a Fisker E-Motion with a corresponding lottery win, provided that it is actually built?
The future will tell, but I think I'll stay with Saab for quite a while.
Text and pictures: Gigi