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GM @ NAIAS '08: Saab 9-4x BioPower Concept

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For release: Jan. 13, 2008, 12:01 a.m. EST (embargo broken by other outlets)

INNOVATIVE 9-4X BIOPOWER CROSSOVER CONCEPT

SIGNALS SAAB PRODUCT EXPANSION

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DETROIT – The Saab 9-4X BioPower Concept, revealed today at the North American International Auto Show, confirms Saab’s plans to enter the growing crossover segment with a dynamic, driver-focused vehicle inspired by Scandinavian design values and respect for the environment.

The concept’s progressive design features are combined with a responsible, fun-to-drive appeal based on BioPower engine technology and a cutting-edge all-wheel-drive system.

“This concept is a clear statement of what our brand is about,” said Jan Åke Jonsson, Saab Automobile Managing Director. “It is also an important next step in our plans to enter new market segments with distinctive product offerings.”

The design of the Saab 9-4X BioPower Concept reflects a Scandinavian principle of simplicity of form, with clean and uncluttered lines, free of any cladding, moldings or roof bars, and defining “ice-block” surface and lighting themes. The progressive frontal styling and interior design elements also draw inspiration from Saab’s widely acclaimed Aero X concept. Innovative load-carrying solutions include a unique ski equipment stowage system, developed with mountain sports specialists Salomon. (Please see accompanying Salomon release.)

Optimized for bioethanol (E85) fuel, t he four-cylinder, 2.0-liter BioPower turbo engine demonstrates Saab’s commitment to “rightsizing” – achieving sufficient levels of performance with a smaller, more efficient engine – by delivering 300 horsepower (221 kW) and strong torque of 295 lb.-ft (400 Nm). Compared to gasoline, driving on E85 produces less CO 2 emissions. (Please see accompanying Powertrain release).

Mated to the industry-leading Saab XWD (“cross-wheel-drive”) system, this advanced powertrain promises to make driving to a destination as enjoyable as the adventure itself.

The Saab 9-4X BioPower Concept was developed by a team headed by Anthony Lo, GM Europe’s Director of Advanced Design, in cooperation with designers and engineers from the Saab Brand Center in Sweden. “We focused on incorporating design themes from the Aero X in a crossover execution, adding functional, lifestyle features to support the activities of customers using this type of vehicle,” Lo said.

The driver-focused cockpit in the sporty, four-seater cabin features an Aero X-inspired “clear zone,” with a flush-mounted starter button and infotainment controls, that sweeps up from the central console to the main display screen. Signature green lighting is used for all instrument illumination, while other subtle references to Saab’s aviation heritage include the “altimeter” speed read-out scale and aircraft-shaped trim on the steering wheel. The panoramic glass roof is in harmony with a car designed to deliver the enjoyment of outdoor pursuits.

Saab designers worked with top Saab Salomon Big Mountain skiers to devise an innovative storage system for stowing skis and equipment inside the car. The rear cargo deck features a sliding floor with a fold-out aluminum ski holder, through which up to three pairs of skis and poles can be slotted. Boots are stowed in an underfloor, heated compartment and, for maximum practicality, the entire rear cargo area is covered in a waterproof and scratch-resistant rubber skin.

The compact, all-aluminum, four-cylinder BioPower engine combines the benefits of turbocharging, direct injection and variable valve timing for the first time with high-octane E85 fuel (85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline).

Driver involvement is taken to a new level by the innovative all-wheel-drive system, Saab XWD. Active management splits torque delivery between both the axles and the rear wheels, via an electronically controlled rear limited-slip differential (eLSD). Overall, the Saab 9-4X BioPower Concept is a vivid demonstration of Saab’s commitment to customers with outdoor leisure interests who seek a sporty driving experience that is in harmony with nature.

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:thumbsup: Edited by ZL-1
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Slick...I like the C-pillar detailing.

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I do like this one quite a bit. I just hope they come out with it sooner than later. I would be in the market for something like this in the near future, it has everything I would want, awd, a turbocharged 4, and dimensions that are good. What I mean by that it is, it looks like it is bigger than the Vue but smaller than say the Acadia. Maybe smaller than the Trailblazer perhaps???

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looks ~4k more expensive than the outlook.

not a fan of the front, but otherwise looks good.

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Definitely not a fan of this.

I expected something innovative, sheetmetal that would advance Saab's design language.

This looks like it could have been in their lineup for a couple of years already.

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encouraging but they still need to exercise out a lot of blandness and typical CUV cliche's and inject some more unique saab styling elements into it. the dash is somewhat interesting but also paradoxically seems like a 90's wraparound style dash (or jet dash, take your pick). The popular dashes today are more vertically stacked and 'podlike'.

look a lot better than that joke cadillac provoq. The blandness of this image makes me wonder if this is a rebadge of some other forthcoming product.

in the end, this is nice but i am not sure it stands out enough to make big market impact.

it might get lost in the flood of crossovers.

that saab areo-x (sonnett) now that concept had style.

edit

I saw the profile on the provoq and now I like it better.

Edited by regfootball
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Optimized for bioethanol (E85) fuel, t he four-cylinder, 2.0-liter BioPower turbo engine demonstrates Saab's commitment to "rightsizing" – achieving sufficient levels of performance with a smaller, more efficient engine – by delivering 300 horsepower (221 kW) and strong torque of 295 lb.-ft (400 Nm), together with substantially reduced CO 2 emissions on a source-to-wheel basis.

!!!300hp 295ft/lb torque?

Out of a 2 litre?!

edit: and

* Fuel consumption (combined): 10.5L /100km (22.4 mpg) on gasoline

To put that into perspective, the BMW X3 gets 18mpg combined out of a 3.0 liter with 260hp.

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I like it... especially the interior.

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look a lot better than that joke cadillac provoq. The blandness of this image makes me wonder if this is a rebadge of some other forthcoming product.

To each their own, I guess.

I think the Provoq is pretty avant-garde in terms of styling. In my eyes, it picks up right where the CTS left off. Its lines are modern, razor-sharp, and uniquely Cadillac (especially the rear). There's some VUE in its proportions, but as a whole I think it's a very cohesive design. And I doubt the average consumer will see the resemblance like we do. In fact, the profile shot of the Provoq really doesn't resemble that of the VUE, even to me.

Judging by these pictures (which, admittedly, aren't high-quality enough to go on), this isn't nearly as modern IMO. There's nothing new or exciting about it. The Provoq's styling doesn't point Cadillac in a new direction because it doesn't have to. Cadillac's design language is already where it needs to be. I'm afraid Saab needs something much more drastic than this in order for it to gain a following. I expected something along the lines of the Aero X, which I don't see here. Again, I just feel like this could have been in their lineup years ago.

Hopefully larger, more-detailed images will change my mind.

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!!!300hp 295ft/lb torque?

Out of a 2 litre?!

Yes, if running on E85. Running on gasoline it gets 245hp 261lb.-ft.

Not bad out of 2 litres, eh?

edit: and

To put that into perspective, the BMW X3 gets 18mpg combined out of a 3.0 liter with 260hp.

It's good! It'll probably get much worse mpg running on E85, but so would competitors.

I like this idea of Saab as having a 'responsible performance' aura.

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Yes, if running on E85. Running on gasoline it gets 245hp 261lb.-ft.

Not bad out of 2 litres, eh?

It's good! It'll probably get much worse mpg running on E85, but so would competitors.

I like this idea of Saab as having a 'responsible performance' aura.

Given what we've seen in other applications, the fuel consumption hit would be between 15% and 20%... putting the biopower at 19 mpg to 17.4 mpg respectively.

Equal milage to the X3 with substantially more power.

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INTERESTING.

a) looks substantially diff. from the BRX

b) no logo on the front/back, just the SAAB name, interesting.

c) VERY different interior than the BRX. very saab-ish. excellent.

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INTERESTING.

a) looks substantially diff. from the BRX

b) no logo on the front/back, just the SAAB name, interesting.

c) VERY different interior than the BRX. very saab-ish. excellent.

a) :yes:

b) there's a cute, round, blue SAAB logo on the hood :smilewide:

c) :yes:

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Interesting, in a academic, specs are good kinda way.

I have yet to see any crossover that excites, so nothing against this one in particular.

None of them wow me.

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Wow, very stylish inside and out. Well done!
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Now, take the potential of this concept and apply it to a Saab car, and then we'll really be talking. :AH-HA_wink:

I actually await the production version of this. The interior is interesting.

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Look great. Nice detailing! The interior is beautiful! :thumbsup:

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The first batch of photos I don't like but the second batch is good looking. I want the Provoq with a V6 more tho.

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Another nice one from GM! I wasn't that impressed when I saw the small pics, but seeing the detail in the larger ones I really like it a lot, especially the rear 3/4.

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