On December 21, I wrote a letter to one of our state senators. At the time, I was unhappy with the way government owned General Motors was handling the sale/dismantling of the SAAB brand. And, frankly, I’m still not real happy with the way things are going. But then I’m not privy to everything that’s going on. Even so, I thought my senator needed to hear my perspective and so took the time to write him.
However, I’ve had some time over Christmas to do some thinking about what I wrote. My initial problem with “the General” was their handling of SAAB’s closure. But after taking a 9-7x home for the holidays, my attitude has shifted a little. Here’s what I’m thinking. From an Ohioan’s viewpoint, GM’s SAAB division has brought jobs to our fair state. As you may well know, the SAAB 9-7x was assembled in Moraine, Ohio. According to Wikipedia,
“The 9-7X was the first American built Saab. It was assembled in the same United States Moraine, Ohio production plant as the other GMT360 SUVs and shared many components with its platform mates. The Saab 9-7X succeeded the Oldsmobile Bravada as GM’s flagship mid-size SUV, and was GM’s highest priced mid-size SUV, as well as the most expensive Saab ever produced.
As much as SAAB lovers have hated the idea of badge engineering, the 9-7x actually is a great vehicle. It has most everything that a SAAB owner would expect: agile handling, responsive steering, a powerful engine, a sleek front facia with the distinctive SAAB grille, leather seats, power glass moonroof, and lot’s more. Although it’s not powered by a turbo-charged engine, note that even the Volvo XC90 doesn’t currently have a turbo option.
With all that in mind, I’m thinking that if I had the opportunity to write the letter to my senator again, that it would be a little different. GM did something good when they made the 9-7x and it benefited the people of Ohio when they did it. Sure, it’s not technically a Swedish SUV, but it sure is a nice one. And my wife and I are agreed that we wouldn’t be disappointed to own one some day.