It's obviously totally anecdotal, but the only people I know who bought the 9-2x or the 9-7x were people who cashed in on luxury Subarus and Trailblazers during GM's fire sale "employee pricing" deal - especially the 9-2x because Subaru wasn't dealing on WRXs at the time.
I'm sure that doesn't describe everyone, and just like buying the Lincoln version of a Ford there was probably fair cause to buy the Saab version of a Chevy, but it was hardly a compelling story... not a tangible amount of differentiation at any level. It's insane that GM thought "Saab brand luxury" would translate into "move Trailblazers." *Especially* at the time, when the Trailblazer was long in the tooth and the 3rd gen Explorer had gotten quite good with its real AWD and IRS.
I totally agree that the Outback and Volvo's XC and Audi's Allroad interpretations should have been clues for GM. The 9-3SS should have debuted with the combi and a 9-3x version. I actually find it a bit crazy that the 9-5 didn't have any sort of AWD capability for the same reason. But, I guess back then GM really didn't have any good platforms, no transverse AWD system. By the time they actually got the 9-3SS nailed, it was already way past time for replacement. Bummer, eh?
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