Saab has released this first teaser picture of its Impreza-based 9-2X, while the Swedish company’s UK bosses still fight to bring what was originally a US-only model to British dealers.
Originally dubbed 9-2, Saab has added the X to emphasise the car’s four-wheel drive and link it with the 9-7X SUV being launched in the States in the summer of 2005.
Power comes from two Subaru four-cylinder boxer engines: the Impreza’s 227bhp 2.0 turbo, complete with minor fettling to the turbo-charger by Saab, and a normally aspirated 2.5-litre with 154bhp, as used in the Legacy here in the UK.
The 9-2X will be unveiled at the LA Motor Show after Christmas, before going on sale in the US next June. But UK bosses are leading a European campaign to get the car sold here; right-hand-drive production isn’t a problem because of the Impreza underpinnings.
‘Some other countries have shown an interest, but we will see how the US roll-out goes first,’ said UK MD Jonathan Nash. This means a decision can be expected in mid-2004.