• Dec 28, 2009
2010 Saab 9-5 – Click above for high-res image gallery

In a rumor sure to irk many Saab faithful, Dagens Industri in Sweden is reporting that "sources within Saab Automobile are stating that GM now sees positive opportunities in a closing of Saab." Ouch, that hurts in an insult-to-injury kind of way, dontcha think?

Specifically, General Motors is said to be considering taking the recently competed but not-yet-on-sale 2010 Saab 9-5 and resuscitating it as a Buick for America. If true, the move does make a bit of sense as the car is by all measures ready to go and it would be quite a waste to put it out to pasture before it ever sees the light of day – especially if the car is anywhere near as good as early reports suggest.

Further, the going speculation is that The General could raid Saab's parts and technology bins for more future products, including a possible revival of the large Opel Senator for Europe. If this rumor proves accurate, it would appear that there may not be much hope left for a Saab purchase by Dutch automaker Spyker as indications are that GM is telling suppliers that it is estimating a five-year wind-down of the brand.



[Source: DN.se via Saabs United]


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  • 65 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      I hate to see the development efforts wasted here, as this Saab is a pretty good looking car and all...but there's no room for it anywhere in a US line-up.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Buick Electra please!

      Just leave the sweet interior alone. Sure, it doesn't have the Buick language, but who cares! Slap a Buick badge on the steering wheel and call it a day.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Although it is sad for Saab to close, why not use the new 9-5 as a new Buick. I agree as long as GM lets Buick design the interior and exterior and not just badge it they will have Buick buyers. Although this is a dilemma and Buick would have sedans that are close to one another. I wonder if GM will use their ecotec engine, if this rumor does come true, for the Buick "9-5"? It would be nice to see GM utilize that technology and make a long wheel base or even a wagon variant, or would that be touching on the CTS? Overall I am just stating the possibilities can be endless with the Buick 9-5.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Yeah, if Buick made the changes they'd want to to make it a proper Buick, 2 things would happen:

        1) It wouldn't be ready for another 18-24 months.

        2) It would only compete with their brand-new LaCrosse.

        Not a good idea for Buick to have it.
      • 5 Years Ago
      If GM is so worried about mis-use of the GM IP, they could add some terms to the sale contract prohibiting transfer of GM IP to the Russians for example. And they could add terms prohibiting GM IP to be used in anything other than a SAAB or something.
      • 5 Years Ago
      If the 9-5 lives and the G8 dies it will prove the utter incompetence of the government!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Maybe not a Buick, but this woukd make a good Impala replacement.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Inline6: Just because it was supposed to cost in the $40k range doesn't mean they can't sell it for much less. This is an Epsilon II-platformed product using the same technology as all the other, much cheaper Epsilon II models. The only thing about it worth $40k+ is the badge.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Inline6: And the 9-5 is bigger than the Malibu in all dimensions except wheelbase and comparable to the Impala. Given that the next Malibu is supposed to be slightly smaller, the 9-5 would be the perfect size to replace the Impala.

        2010 9-5: Length = 197.2", Width = 71.5", Height = 58.0", Wheelbase = 111.8"
        2010 Malibu: Length = 191.8", Width = 70.3", Height = 57.1", Wheelbase = 112.3"
        2010 Impala: Length = 200.4", Width = 72.9", Height = 58.7", Wheelbase = 110.5"
        • 5 Years Ago
        Jimbo,

        I was looking at the specs as posted on saabhistory.com. Apparently, they were off.

        The point still stands that this would make a lousy Impala replacement.

        If GM was losing $5k on every Saab sold, and the new one was supposed to list for $40k+, they'll probably be losing money on it by charging Impala prices.

        To note, Ford has taken the Taurus way upscale, and it still isn't selling any better than the anonymous 500/Taurus of 2005-09, which is to say at 1/3rd the rate that Chevy sells the Impala.

        I agree that the current Impala is desperately old and needed replacing yesterday. But there's just no way they're going to get Impala-like volume out of a car like the 9-5.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Absolutely. The W-body Impala is so long in the tooth and needs to go.

        Unless they have an awesome Impala ready to go, which I doubt, the 9-5 with a reskin could be a very nice temp replacement until the Next real Impala is ready to go
      Syed S. Saqib
      • 5 Years Ago
      I would like to see Buick turn into SAAB, and not the other way. SAAB can be the new Buick, and the Buick name can fade away.
        Syed S. Saqib
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Syed S. Saqib
        Sorry for the repost, my iPhone is constantly crashing.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Syed S. Saqib
        Buick sells more cars in America than Saab sells worldwide.

        In fact, Buick sells more than 5x the cars worldwide that Saab does. And at a tidy profit for GM.

        As has already been reported, GM was losing $5k+ on every Saab sold for the last few years.

        Buick is far more successful than Saab, both in sales and in profit margins. That's why they get to live.
      • 5 Years Ago
      As long as it wears sheetmetal that mimics Buick's design language, there is little reason not to do it. Then again, that would give Buick 3 new sedans that are fairly close to each other in size and price.
      Also it's kind of funny that they might do this with the 9-5, but weren't willing to make a Buick out of the G8.

      Still though, this is completely just a rumor so anything (can nothing) can happening.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I think it would be rather obvious that they would reskin it and not use this exact sheetmetal.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I got the same impression: this is all just a rumor and nothing to get happy/upset about just yet.

        But I don't understand where this would fit in the Buick lineup. It's sized right in the thick with Buick's other cars and not in the Buick fold of styling (thought I wouldn't mind some of its details making it to other Buicks). So I really don't see where this would go. A more stylish and expensive LaCrosse? I don't see enough buyers for that.

        Buick, how about a Zeta-based RWD sedan?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Buick GNX here we come!
        • 5 Years Ago
        Since the 9-5 is built on the Epsilon II platform, which is also what the Buick LaCrosse and Regal are built on, why not transform the 9-5 into the Chevrolet Impala? GM says it will be 2014 before we see the next gen Impala.

        Why not put a team together and see what could be done? They already have a production-ready, fully-tested vehicle. Move the equipment over to North America and boom! you could see this on the roads by 2012.

        In the end, this is complete conjecture . . . I suspect that we will never see the 9-5 in any fashion, which is a shame, because I think it is quite attractive.
        • 5 Years Ago
        For all the altered/pro-Buick look 9-5..this is for you, c/o Carscoop.

        http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_FoXyvaPSnVk/Szji8XCqZGI/AAAAAAACXwk/hlBXyjDkqv4/s800/2010-BUICK-9-5-Sedan-0+copy.jpg

        A Buick redesign abomination...ruined a perfectly good looking car.
        • 5 Years Ago
        The problem with the suggestion is that this looks nothing like a Buick...
        • 5 Years Ago
        James,

        That pic is obviously a 9-5 with the LaCrosse headlights and grille photoshopped to it.

        There has been ZERO confirmation that the 9-5 will find new life as a Buick. Much less any prototype work done on this level.
      • 5 Years Ago
      If they do close down SAAB, GM is obviously trying to reduce competition for Cadillac and Buick. Which is unfortunate because I would buy a Saab. I would never by a GM product after everything they have done in the last few years.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Why does Buick get to live?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Buick gets to live because they sell more than 100k cars annually in the US. Saab can barely manage 10k here.

        Buick gets to live because they sell 400k+ units in China. Saab can't manage to move 100k units worldwide.

        Buick gets to live because they actually make money for GM. Saab loses GM $5k on every unit sold.

        Are those enough reasons?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Does great in China
        • 5 Years Ago
        Just because Buick does great in China does not mean it should continue to exist in other markets. Especially when it has nearly complete product overlap with Chevrolet.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @inline6
        Before I posted that comment I didn't know the difference in sales between those two. So calm down. Im not trying to hate on Buick or anything like that.
      HotRodzNKustoms
      • 5 Years Ago
      I could see this being offered as a one generation only GMC. Yes I know it is all trucks and SUVs but why not a unique sedan? Just offer it in AWD only and it would be a unique alternative in GM's lineup that would fit well in the GMC showroom and to the appeal normal GMC buyers that might be thinking of a sedan.
        HotRodzNKustoms
        • 5 Years Ago
        @HotRodzNKustoms
        Not my local GMC dealer. But I could see someone who just bought a GMC Sierra for himself not look at a Buick in the same showroom for his wife but look at a GMC sedan for her.
      • 5 Years Ago
      What about a 2011 Impala? Too lavish? The Taurus can be had now with rain-sensing wipers, laser cruise, cooled seats, Sync, pushbutton start, and more things I probably cannot think of.

      I don't see why not?
        • 5 Years Ago
        That's not true. The 2010 9-5 was to be a larger car. Actually it shared the Ep 2 platform with the new Lacrosse which is a large car. Maybe it wouldn't be that big, maybe it would. We don't know so niether of us can say.

        So what if it's supposed to start at 45K? Decontent it. The basic quality of the interior is fine. Frankly there's little to suggest that it was of quality much higher than the Lacrosse that's in the 27 grand bracket for a base model.

        You're confused with my position. My position is to bring it down to the 26-36K price structure IF and only IF it's sized right. The Impala's sales are slipping and huge discounts bring the price down, again why it's still selling higher.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I see why not.

        1) GM sells 200k Impalas a year. Ford sells 50k Tauruses per year. And the current model is actually selling even worse than its predecessor.

        2) Most Impalas go for between $25k and $30k. This Saab was supposed to start at $45k. So GM would be deserting its current crop of Impala buyers, only to compete with Buick and Cadillac. Not a good idea.

        3) The 9-5 is smaller than the Impala. Much smaller. In fact, it's shorter overall than the midsized Malibu!

        The 9-5 would be a lousy replacement for the Impala. No question.
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