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When it comes to reviewing Saabs, neither Consumer Reports or Car and Driver have had much to say in recent times that was positive.

Maybe they're both getting their water coolers from the same supplier, as both were relatively positive about different Saabs in the last week or so....


Consumer Reports' blurb is less of a test and more of an impression. They've done a group test (sub req'd) of "upscale sedans" that included the Saab 9-5. All cars in the group they rate as 'recommended' vehicles (their main beef is with the 9-3) but the 9-5 apparently rated at the bottom of the group.

This didn't stop CR writer Mike Quincy from showing the 9-5 some love in a CR blog entry:

<blockquote>I know my colleagues are going to bust a gut laughing at this one, but my pick for this month is the Saab 9-5. I realize that it's one of the bottom-rated models within this category (and it came in dead-last in this test group), but for some reason the old 9-5 still speaks to me. Maybe it's the steering feedback or the thrust of the turbocharged engine… I don't know exactly why I like it. Or, perhaps when I was in college, a Saab was THE car to own – and I never came close. I like the way the 9-5 looks, and I fit well in the seats.

Most of the other cars are faster, handle better and a few get better fuel economy. But I find that the Lexus ES350 has no soul, the Nissan Maxima is boring, the Lincoln MKZ does nothing for me that the cheaper Fusion doesn't do, and I'm MUCH too young to fall in love with the Buick Lucerne (but its V8 engine is a gem). I really like the G35. It's so clearly an engineering marvel-–I spent a great deal of time driving our RWD model back from North Carolina–-but when it came time to pluck a set of keys off of our car board, I kept reaching for the 9-5. Personality goes a long way with me, and what the 9-5 gives up in performance to the G, it more than makes up for it with character.</blockquote>

Yeah, I had to do a double-take to. An assessment from CR that wasn't based on number-crunching and analysis.

Good to hear. As Samuel L said in Pulp Fiction: <blockquote>Personality goes a long way...</blockquote>


Car and Driver have been out testing $40,000 (or so) convertibles. There's a fair margin either way of that mark in this test with the Eos having a base price of around $28K and the BMW coming in around $20K more than that, but all are 4-seater 'verts so somehow it's all OK. There's tin tops and soft tops in the group.

The Saab in the group was a 2.0T Convertible, priced at around $37K. They say they asked for a V6 but couldn't secure one from Saab. There is a school of thought that the 2.0T is an engine that's better suited to the 9-3 anyway, so maybe they did OK regardless.

The other cars were a VW Eos, Ovlov C70, BMW 328i and Audi A4.


The 9-3 Convertible rated pretty well in the end, placing in the middle of the group. If you have the time, check out the PDF test sheets for each of the cars. First, the Audi is as slow as wet week once it gets past 60mph and second, why do they run these test cars on 90 and 91 Octane?

I bet the Aero would have outbraked the Audi, and it'd still be around $5K cheaper, too, but now I'm being petty.

C&D liked the comfort of the 9-3s front seats and the suspension, summarising the car as a youthful spirit in an ageing body. I can't help but think about the fact that the 9-3, even in Aero form, is priced around $5K less than the BMW and Audi in this group (around $10K as-tested). Surely there's a margin for some better materials there (yes, I have a bug in my butt about this issue).

Do I need to tell you who they rated at #1? Really?

You can read the article from the start here, or go straight to the Saab page.
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