What it's like when a Saab wins an Oscar

It actually came true. “Drive my car” by Ryusuke Hamaguchi won the award for best international film at the 94th Academy Awards. A road movie in which a car may not play the leading role, but it has an important part. An old Saab, too, plus a combustion engine, which makes the story particularly incredible. “Drive my Car” prevailed against the competition from Denmark, Bhutan, Italy and Norway. And it was pretty strong.

Saab 900 in "Drive my car"
Saab 900 in "Drive my car"

The Saab that took to the world stage

It's of course the emotional story that was being told and the fact that all the ingredients were right. The staging, the actors, the direction and also the choice of the car, which largely sets the scene for the action. The award was not entirely unexpected, there were justified hopes, but also doubts because of the enormous competition.

That the dream came true was also registered with astonishment in Saab's home country. The Swedish press needed a few days to sort itself out. Or rather, to sort things out with the Saab. The Saab that took to the world stage wrote Jonas Fröberg in Dagens Nyheter (DN). One of the best motor journalists in the country and probably the most sensitive. A self-confessed Saab fan and author.

Saab is - 11 years after the departure of the brand in the direction of Nordic Valhalla - cult. Mind you in Sweden, which is quite remarkable. And the 900, the classic, is the most iconic Saab to ever roll out of the halls along Göta Älv. The Swedes have been strangers to their own history for an unbelievably long time. They struggled with the brand in their last few years, which is not necessarily the fault of the Swedes themselves. Because GM did everything it could to make it difficult to own the brand.

“Drive my Car” as a Saab brand ambassador

It's over. The Swedes love again what their brilliant engineers dreamed up. One has noticed the constantly increasing appreciation for some time in the prices that are paid in Saab's homeland for cultural assets with the 4 letters at auctions.

“Drive my Car” and the Oscar add one more thing to the trend, they actually ennoble it. The red Saab 900 Turbo that drives across the world screens in the Japanese film is a brand ambassador. The Saab brand could not dream of a more suitable one.

The best: No marketing department filmed here, no product placement was paid for. That, too, is unusual in a world where it's common for automakers to pay outrageous sums to place products in films. Hoping that the film's brilliance and storyline will reflect on the brand.

It wasn't like that with Ryusuke Hamaguchi. There was no manufacturer who pulled out his check book. Everything is authentic and the Saab was chosen for who it is. Cool, cult and something very special in a world that is overflowing with boring automobiles.

13 thoughts on "What it's like when a Saab wins an Oscar"

  • Hi , if this continues , Heuschmid can justify its prices . And I no longer have to park my 7th Saab since 1979, a 900 convertible, but better insure it. It's okay. Have fun !

  • If we weren't offered the idea for a new sticker for the blog.
    My quite serious suggestion would be: "Saab: Oscar-winning"
    I would immediately reserve an area at the rear of my seed drill for this!

  • It's just a very nice car.
    If not the most beautiful car.

    Apparently more and more Saab are playing in films and advertising. Currently also at Hornbach.

    It would be interesting to know why that is...
    Is it a tribute to the great brand?
    Or just financially, since no one is suing for rights and it is easier to put a tree in a Saab than in a VW or BMW with an active legal department?

    But anyway it's nice to see Saab in movies and commercials.....
    Greeting André

    • It is certainly the fact that a Saab is a "neutral" product. No manufacturer, no production, no bumping into another advertiser.

      In fact, the brand is still a fixture for many creative people. There are certain affinities there.

      • Well explained. In advertising, neutrality is a real factor, especially for car insurance.

        At the same time, Saabs also offer the opportunity to make statements, to set accents - beyond the various brand affinities that exist in the target group.

        With the sports combis (incl. 9-3X), convertibles, limousines (up to the 9-5 NG with a length of 5m), the timeless "new cars", young and oldtimers, a number of lifestyles can be depicted, target groups can be reflected according to age and purchasing power and promote suitable products.

        It certainly won't last forever, but it may increase for a few more years before the peak is reached. Saab & advertising - exciting ...

    • Excuse me,
      have crushed me. Should be a "thumbs up".

  • Love Saab! forever! A cult is and remains a cult!

  • Tom, you made my day with this well-tempered report. Sometimes I feel like seeing the same vehicles on TV over and over again on the station. The criminals in particular can no longer turn out without a BMW, it seems. ( In Basel they had a black Viggen for years, discreet, reliable, fast! )

    The new Hornbach advertising is also Saab-heavy. I don't find the advertising and its message so intoxicating now. The Saab convertible is of course untouchable!

    • Product Placement

      That's right, the Hornbach advertisement still exists. Measured by the new registrations, Saab has a fantastic media presence - even measured by the street scene ...

      And all without financial interests. I find that fascinating and it makes me happy. With every appearance you know reliably that the Saab was already in the literary template (such as Ove), the screenplay (for film or series) or on the story board (advertising and music videos). Saabs are just characters, conscious occupations ...

      Product placement is fully interchangeable with highest bidder. But a Saab is irreplaceable 😉

    • Especially the BMW presence at prime time is annoying. In the highest equipment version, the shiny bodies roll onto the parking lot directly in front of the camera.

      Our local police drives the BMW checkout frames, without 22″ rims and such. That's anti-advertising and has nothing to do with reality.

  • Film tip with Saab 900 steep schnauzer

    "Semi-detached house" in the streaming of ZDF. Delicious series that plays very intelligently with all sorts of clichés to either celebrate or break them.

    One cultural or neighborly misunderstanding follows the other and one gag follows the next. Especially good in these times. The Saab has a small supporting role, but is more than an extra. When the owner reveals to the neighbor that she works for an unnamed manufacturer of EVs and he asks back, the H-licensed Saab is additionally charged with meaning.
    "As? What? You work for those who clear the forest for us here and dig up the water?"

    As I said, the series serves and breaks clichés every second. And in the middle a Saab. If you are looking for intelligent gossip and relaxation for a change, you will find it there.

    • Thanks for this wonderful tip! Finally entertaining and short (25 minutes per episode, you can't and don't always want to watch 90 minutes of crime when you need distraction) entertainment in the "semi-detached house"! Since we hardly watch TV or the like and have completely lost track, it would have passed us by completely otherwise. Great and humorous confrontation with prejudices that everyone here has. As always, the Saab cuts a very good figure and you can be happy about a lot or really disgust (1st episode!). 🙁

      By the way, I don't think the Hornbach ad and the idea behind it are that bad, if you look at the version on YT, which is over 2 minutes long. Well done, beautifully quirky and non-conformist, how the neglected Saab and the neglected garden team up on their outing together! 🙂

      • You made my day...

        A non-conformist, vegetative automotive alliance of the neglected?

        Big cinema! That sums up the clip perfectly. And so summed up, it's my first laugh today. Very healthy. Thanks!

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