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Saab 9-4X and Cadillac BRX (2009): spy photos
13 August 2008 17:40
What about the styling?
Both the Cadillac and Saab 4x4s have been previewed by concepts. The Saab by the 9-4X Biopower and the Cadillac by the Provoq. The latter has also been known as the BRX and will provide a replacement for the large and unloved SRX crossover. Cadillac is hoping to appeal to more female buyers with the new car and wants to double sales to 60-70k.
Saab meanwhile, is coming very late to the compact SUV market. BMW, Audi, Mercedes and VW all have offerings. Unfortunately, in a quest to secure the funding and develop the 9-4X, it will abandon some traditional Saab features like a clamshell bonnet and wraparound windscreen. The styling is also more upright and less rakish than the concept, but can you can clearly see shape of grille through the disguise. Those felt-tip pen lines haven't fooled us.
Of course the 21-inch wheels disappear, and we’ll be gobsmacked if the 9-4X is offered with the concept’s Salomon-developed aluminium ski holder. Don’t expect the interior's translucent green plastics to be available either.
The 9-4X concept also had a BioPower tag, signifying its 2.0-litre turbocharged engine could run on E85. In the concept it produced 300bhp and 295lb ft, and Saab UK hopes the 9-4X will maintain the company’s turbo traditions. Whether GM’s tight purse strings make that possible remain to be seen.
A hybrid module may be in the pipeline though, as parent company GM has already developed the technology with BMW, Mercedes and Chrysler.
What’s happened with the 9-1 then?
The 9-1, which was shown at this year’s Geneva motor show as the 9-X concept, has apparently been put on hold. Although it hadn't been officially confirmed for production the latest reports from Sweden claim Saab is rethinking the car. So rather than a BMW 1-series rival based on the new Astra platform, it might actually turn out to be a Audi A1 competitor and use the Corsa platform. Either way we just hope they get on and build it. Saab needs new metal and new models soon.
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