Saab sticks with its two-model strategy for 2002. The flagship model is the 9-5 five-door sedan and SportWagon, while the smaller compact 9-3 comes as a three-door hatchback coupe, five-door hatchback sedan and two-door convertible. The 9-5 sedan and SportWagon, aimed at the premium-car segment, have revised styling and three new interior themes: Linear, Arc and Aero. These themes represent different flavors that will appear in all future Saab cars, with the Linear as standard, Arc for Luxury/Touring and Aero geared to performance. The base 9-3 is now a value-oriented 9-3 five-door SE; the 9-3 Viggen continues with three-door, five-door and two-door convertible versions.
9-5: Saab's flagship mid-size sedan and SportWagon have new style for 2002, with a smooth new front bumper and integrated grille with clear headlamps and pop-up headlamp washers. For the interior, the three new themes utilize unique features. The base Linear edition has a walnut-trimmed instrument panel with standard soft leather upholstery, heated front seats and ten-spoke 16-inch wheels. The Arc format also has walnut on the instrument panel but adds standard perforated leather with ventilated front seats and heaters in front and back plus new five-spoke 16-inch BBS wheels. The 9-5 Aero goes with a metal look around the instrument panel and shows bolstered sport seats, standard front and rear heated seats and ten-spoke 17-inch BBS wheels. For power, the engine for the Aero — a high-output turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder — is bumped to 250 hp and comes with either manual or automatic transmission. The five-speed automatic is new with its first gear dropped 26 percent lower to deliver quicker launch acceleration. The Linear has a 2.3-liter turbo four that hits 185 hp with the standard manual shifter or an optional automatic. The Arc gets the 3.0-liter V-6 turbo at 200 hp and the automatic. New electronic stability equipment, optional on Linear but standard to Arc and Aero, employs Bosch hardware and can automatically apply outboard brakes to correct for lateral oversteer slippage; understeer is controlled by applying the in-board brakes. All 9-5 versions also use a traction control system with on/off switch mounted on the dash near the button for standard OnStar telecommunications. New color choices include Polar White and Hazelnut, with Cosmic Blue reserved strictly for the Aero.
2002 Saab 9-5 Aero Wagon by TCC Team (10/22/2001)
9-3: This year, Saab drops its base three-door and makes a value-priced 9-3 SE five-door its least expensive vehicle. The 9-3 Viggen still comes in three-door, five-door and convertible variations, each cast in an optional new Sand Beige interior tint matched by carbon-fiber treatment around the instrument panel. The 9-3 SE five-door draws power from Saab's four-cylinder high-output turbo that hits 205 hp. Standard equipment includes new 16-inch five-spoke alloy wheels, an exterior body kit, sunroof, power driver's seat, and a wood-grained instrument panel. Also, a new Premium Package for the SE has a sport chassis, automatic climate controls, premium audio, power controls for the passenger seat and memory for the driver's seat, leather for the seats and a leather-wrapped sport steering wheel. The 9-3 SE Convertible moves into 2002 with new 16-inch five-spoke alloy wheels, leather seats and leather door panels plus the option of a new Sport Package. The powerful 9-3 Viggen — the name comes from a Saab military jet airplane and translates from Swedish into English as "Thunderbolt" — contains Saab's high-output turbo 2.3-liter four that produces a robust 230 hp.