Saab 9-XbioHybrid at the Geneva Auto Show ~ Hybrid Car Review
Hybrid Car Review: Saab 9-XbioHybrid at the Geneva Auto Show

Monday, March 03, 2008

Saab 9-XbioHybrid at the Geneva Auto Show

Saab 9XbioHybridSaab is looking to integrate their line-up more fully into GM, and part of that is using the GM hybrid systems. To demonstrate it, Saab is bringing the 9-XbioHybrid, a two-door mild hybrid coupe.

GM estimates the new Saab concept could get 48 mpg or 105g of CO2 per km (36 mpg on E-85). Part of the high fuel economy ratings comes from its small size. The 9-XbioHybrid is about the same as a Volvo C30 hatchback.

The Saab concept comes with 1.4-liter engine with a six-speed manual transmission. The mild hybrid system includes start-stop technology and regenerative braking to help recharge the lithium-ion battery pack.

The concept may even make it to production as the Saab 9-1 early next year, but probably not as shown.

One cute part is the solar panels on top, but that's not likely to be followed up on. A lot of 'green' concept cars lately have had solar panels on top to recharge plug-in devices or NAV systems.

"This latest concept draws on the design cues of the Saab Aero X," said Lutz. If GM builds the car, it would be called the 9-1, Lutz said.

Mark Adams, vice president of design for GM Europe, said the concept shows what Saab wants to make its premium compact car look like.

The 9-X comes has a split two-piece tailgate and looks like a hatchback. The cargo deck features an electrically-powered slide-out floor, which is activated when the bottom half of the split tailgate drops down to the floor. The rear spoiler extends at speeds above 43 mph (70 kph), giving the concept a better drag at high speeds.

The interior features a new system to control mobile phones and MP3 players designed by Sony Ericcson. The system is wireless for streaming data for display and use. The interior displays are clear and simplified for the driver.

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