So now we get to see the new Saab 9-5 from every conceivable angle, thanks to an exclusive Autocar photo shoot, from which you can see the pictures by clicking here.
It is the start of a new beginning for Saab - and it could be the start of something big thanks to a lucky co-incidence of timing.
Saab went into bankruptcy protection with three new cars virtually ready for the showroom. The new 9-5 saloon and Mexican-built 9-4x SUV are more or less finished and the dramatically styled 9-5 wagon is in the final stages of engineering.
Saab suffered from a desperate lack of new models over the last decade partly due to self-inflicted problems (the launch of the 9-3 SportWagon was delayed because Saab overspent on the 9-3 saloon) but also because appalling luck under GM control.
GM bosses cancelled at least four new Saab models - three of them SUVs - at the point of them being committed for production. The fourth canned model was intended as a replacement for the ageing 9-5. It grew out of Saab’s co-operation with Alfa Romeo and was binned because it wasn’t based on GM components.
It’s not hard to imagine how Saab felt after engineering the Premium platform and then seeing it carried off by Alfa in the wake of GM dissolving its relationship with Fiat. Ironically, it may be a blessing in disguise that Saab’s new models were held up.
By early next year Saab should be under new ownership and production of the new 9-5 should be up and running at Trollhattan. Well within 18 months we’ll see the 9-4x (produced in dollars, making it more profitable in Europe) and new 9-5 wagon.
Today, poised to re-launch itself as a newly independent carmaker, the timing of Saab’s new model launches has final turned in the company’s favour.