27 May 2004

The fruits of the GM/Fiat alliance are about to filter through to Saab, in the form of a pair of cutting-edge diesel engines. The 9-3 will get the same 1.9-litre common-rail turbodiesel and six-speed manual gearbox as the forthcoming Vauxhall Vectra 1.9 CDTi. A development of Fiat’s JTD unit, it will replace the ageing 2.2 TiD engine when it goes on sale in September, badged 9-3 1.9 TiD.

The entry-level eight-valve unit produces 120bhp, 157g/km of CO2 and returns 49.2mpg, while the 150bhp 16-valve variant is tuned more for torque, stumping up 232lb ft. Both comply with Euro4 emissions regs, with prices for the lesser-powered unit expected to equal that of the outgoing 2.2. A new six-speed automatic will also be available on 16v models.

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