The midsized sedan has been growing in all directions for decades, but soaring fuel prices have customers begging for something smaller. GM is heeding the call as it is preparing a smaller batch of next generation Saabs. The next 9-3 was originally slated to be underpinned by the Epsilon II, but in March GM decided to instead utilize the lower-medium Delta architecture. The Delta platform will also be used for the next-gen Chevy Cruze, which is slated to eventually replace the Cobalt. The end result will be a smaller, lighter, more efficient Swedish sedan.
With the 9-3 shrinking, Saab will also need to down-size its planned 9-1, which was originally scheduled to be Delta-based. Speculation has Saab reaching into GM's global architecture bin to use the Gamma platform that currently underpins the Opel Corsa. The idea has legs, too, as the Swedish automaker calls the idea "imaginable." Both vehicles are said to contain small, efficient turbocharged powertrains, which is in line with what Saab already uses. We're all for smaller, more agile Saabs, and killer fuel economy wouldn't hurt either.
[Source: Automotive News - Sub. Req.]