Three Awards in One Month Highlight Many Virtues of Saab Core Model
Detroit, Mich. - December 2005 will go in the history books as one of the most praise-filled months in the career of Saab's core model, the 9-3. Within a few weeks time, the 9-3's many virtues were highlighted by three significant awards from as many influential institutions in North America.
First and foremost, the 9-3 Sport Sedan received a 'Gold Award' from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety for its excellent behavior in front, rear and side impact crashtests. The Saab 9-3 was one of only four cars to receive the IIHS Gold Award, and notably the only one in the premium/luxury segment.
Just introduced in the 9-3 line-up, the all-new 2.8 V6 Turbo powertrain was named among the '10 Best Engines for 2006' by the editorial staff of Ward's Automotive Communications. Saab's first-ever V6 in the 9-3 delivers 250 hp and a maximum torque of 258 lb.-ft. between 2,000 and 4,500 rpm - more and earlier than the significantly more expensive BMW 330i. The new engine is available in the 9-3 Aero Sport Sedan, Convertible as well as the new 5-door SportCombi.
Last but not least, the new Saab 9-3 SportCombi received the '2006 Active Lifestyle Vehicle of the Year' award in the best value, on-road category. A joint initiative from Active.Com and the Gen-A Network, this award is based on feedback from automotive journalists plus elite and recreational athletes from across the United States.
"We at Saab feel obviously honored with all this praise for the 9-3", said Jay Spenchian, Saab USA general manager. "Because Saab is a relatively small brand, the many strengths of the Saab 9-3 may not be as widely known = so it is great to see influential institutions recognizing them. It is all the more evidence that the Saab 9-3 is an extremely competitive offering across the board. Especially with the new Saab 'value pricing' for 2006, there never has been a better time to buy a new 9-3."
As part of Saab's marketing strategy for 2006, all former 9-3 Linear and Arc models have been 'blended' into a single, well equipped entry-level model, the 2.0T.
Across the 9-3's 2006 lineup, Saab's turbocharged 210-hp 4-cyl. engine replaces the previous 175-hp unit as the base engine. Many features which were optional are now standard equipment, such as a power driver's seat on the 2.0T Sport Sedan.
The starting MSRP for the 2006 9-3 2.0T Sport Sedan is $26,620 (all prices include delivery charges), a decrease of $950 vs. the 2005 Linear. On a comparably equipped basis, the 2.0T is priced $3,105 less than the car it replaces.
The starting price for the 2006 9-3 Aero 2.8 V6 Sport Sedan is $32,620, a decrease of $950 vs. the four-cylinder 2005 Aero. On a comparably equipped basis, the Aero is priced $3,170 less than the 2005 model.
The 2006 9-3 SportCombi 5-door, Saab's latest addition to its line-up of premium midsize cars, has a base MSRP of $27,620 for the 210-hp 2.0T. The 9-3 SportCombi's base price is approximately $3,000 less than that of the Audi A4 2.0T Avant, a prime competitor. The SportCombi Aero model with the new 250-hp Turbo V6 starts at $33,620.
Starting MSRP for the 2006 9-3 2.0T Convertible is $37,220, a decrease of $600 vs. the 2005 Linear Convertible. On a comparably equipped basis, the 2.0T is priced $3,580 less than the 2005 Linear.
The MSRP for the 9-3 2.8 V6 Aero Convertible is $42,620, a decrease of $700 vs. the 2005 four-cylinder Aero Convertible. On a comparably equipped basis, the 2006 9-3 Aero Convertible is priced $2,920 less than the model it replaces.