2003 Saab 9-3 Review

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TCC Team TCC Team
July 22, 2002
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Saab Making Big Plans




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It’s not easy to sleep when the first bright rays of sun stream in through your window at 3 a.m. But this time of year, it never gets completely dark in Stockholm. Of course, in the winter, you barely ever see sunlight. Such extremes can influence the national character—and the products a country produces. Maybe that’s why Swedish architecture is so distinctive. And Swedish cars.

Over the years, both Saab and Volvo have developed images distinct and different from more mainstream European brands. Volvo’s reputation is solid and almost stern. Saab’s, on the hand is both sporty and quirky. That’s helped the company earn a small, if loyal, following. But not one it can live on: Saab has only survived the last decade on the largesse of its American parent, General Motors. But patience, and support, can eventually wear out. So there’s a lot riding on the all-new 9-3 that the automaker is bringing to market later this year.

Bread and butter - hold the herring

2003 Saab 9-3

2003 Saab 9-3

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A complete update of Saab’s bread-and-butter product line, the 2003-edition 9-3 could prove to be one of the most significant products in the Swedish automaker’s relatively brief history. (Founded only 55 years ago, it is the youngest of the major car brands excluding luxury arms like Lexus, Infiniti, etc.) Starting out with the same Epsilon platform used by a variety of other GM products, the 9-3 is larger and a lot more mainstream than past products. To drive that home, Saab has abandoned past practices, rolling out a sedan, rather than the traditional 9-3 hatchback. At least three other variants will follow over the next few years, ranging from a convertible to a ute-like crossover vehicle.
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