Saab 9-3 Turbo X coming to GCC

Saab 9-3 Turbo X coming to GCC


Saab has announced that the new upgraded version of the 9-3, dubbed the Turbo X, will go on sale in the Middle East this June, available in very limited numbers. Specialties of the Turbo X include a 280 hp 2.8-litre turbocharged V6 and all-wheel-drive.


The Saab Turbo X is apparently equipped with the XWD “cross-wheel-drive” system, which is really an active all-wheel-drive system that continuously distributes the 400 Nm of torque from the award-winning 2.8-litre turbocharged V6 engine between the front and rear axles, and also between the rear wheels. Unlike conventional all-wheel-drive systems, XWD eliminates the need to detect front wheel slip before rear drive is activated, contributing to a system which Saab believes sets a new benchmark in all-wheel-drive performance. Turbo X also boasts the addition of an active rear limited-slip differential (eLSD) as standard. The eLSD can transfer up to 50 per cent of maximum rear torque between the rear wheels, to whichever has more grip.

In addition to tuning suspension, electronic chassis, throttle and powertrain settings, Turbo X features distinctive styling additions that enhance its aerodynamic performance.

Offered only in metallic jet black, with the front grille and all exterior detailing accented in a matte grey titanium-like finish, it harks back to the original 900 Turbo ancestor. At the front, a deeper lip spoiler and integrated air intake contribute to reduced drag while also increasing air flow to the engine and intercooler. At the rear, the re-profiled bumper and insert panel lowers the point of air flow separation, further reducing drag and assisting high speed stability.

Inside, the sports seating, with additional bolstering, is upholstered in black leather trim. The sporty ambience is further emphasised by a carbon-fibre finish to the main fascia, door inserts, glove box and gear shift console which is unique to Turbo X.

In recognition of Saab’s turbo heritage, the Turbo X boost gauge is a replica of the original 900 Turbo display. Owners will also get a personalised greeting when they get behind the wheel and switch on the ignition. A unique ‘Ready For Take-off’ message flashes in the main instrument display. The owner’s name, with the edition number of the car, can also be programmed by the supplying dealer.


Price is undisclosed for now, although we expect it to cost beyond Dhs 150,000. Potential buyers are being urged to sign up early for the “limited” cars, although we get the feeling there will still be many left on the showroom floor at the end of the year.

What do you think?



  1. i think the styling looks somewhat similar to the new accord

  2. Author

    Are you kidding? But looks aside, this is the first proper car from Saab ever.

  3. hmm something about that 1st pic reminds me of the accord.

  4. Its got the underpinning of the old impreza right . I still wonder why middle east dosent get the sti’s or even the wrx for that matter .

  5. Author

    You’re thinking of the USA-only Saab 9-2X, which was simply a Subaru Impreza WRX wagon with a Saab front end. That car flopped back in 2006. The 9-3 is based on the Opel Vectra platform, and this is the first time it has all-wheel-drive.

  6. Whilst the back looks sexy yet conservative, the front looks more like a throwback to their old school cars (from the 70’s). But 400nm of torque from a 2.8? That’s just too sweet.

    I think it will be in the price range of G37. I’m interested in this, but I’d rather wait for some impatient fool to get his now and then buy it off him 2 years later for less than half the price 😉

  7. it still looks dull like the one before.looks are important to me,like 4 example:chrysler 300c

  8. why is Saab an almost complete failure in the GCC market??

  9. Lack of support from the dealer.

    If you were around at the time – say early 80’s – Abdullah Masood & Sons had the franchise. It was going great guns until a relative died in a Saab. Although it wasn’t the car’s fault, the dealer took it to heart and the franchise went downhill from there.

    Soon after Habtoor bought it and the entire middle/senior management was replaced; out with the few who knew, in with the expats who couldn’t make it work.

    In a nutshell – this is a car in the same league as volvo and jagaur – to a point where it was actually Saab that used the tag line ‘safest car in the world’ – but due to lacklustre local support, the GCC market simply doesnt see it as such.


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