Today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe Saab is really a Chevy Trailblazer SS wearing IKEA clothes. Let’s see if this rare Corvette-powered Canadian earns its Swedish stripes.
I’d like to offer a mea culpa to you all for forgetting to note that the A/C in yesterday’s funky 1979 BMW 733i limousine was on the fritz. Even in normal times that would be a deal killer for anyone in a southern state as we’re rapidly approaching summer. In our current “leave the windows rolled up lest someone cough on you” state of affairs, that’s probably a major factor for everyone. Add to that a $8,999 price tag before your R12 repairs, and that meant a stone cold 74 percent Crack Pipe loss.
I don’t know how hot it gets in Canada—I’ve only ever visited there in the spring—but tempurature shouldn’t be a factor in the consideration of this Canadian-market 2008 Saab 9-7x Aero as it’s A/C is apparently working. That A/C also has a Corvette-sourced LS2 V8 to keep it doing its thing.
The 9-7x was one of those “not-so” Saabs that arose following the company’s purchase by GM. It was a lightly re-skinned and re-badged GMT360 SUV that based a lot of its body shape on the outgoing Olds Bravada. With both brands now dead it makes you wonder if that body was particularly cursed or something. Other GMT360 models included the GMC Envoy, Chevy Trailblazer, and the Isuzu Ascender (hee, hee, ass-enter). All of those rolled out of GM’s Moraine Assembly plant in Montgomery County, Ohio.
The 9-7x debuted with an interesting engine - GM’s 285-horsepower 4.2-litre DOHC straight-six. A 5.3-litre Vortec V8 was also on the roster, but wasn’t all that notable until it got “displacement on demand” cylinder deactivation.
With the 2008 Aero, Saab offered a significant upgrade, in the form of a 6-litre LS2 V8. The company also began to make the 9-7x a little more Saab-like with this model, lowering the suspension and changing calibrations to make the truck more of a Cayenne competitor and less a Bravada knock-off. And yes, the ignition switch is rightfully there between the seats instead of on the column.
Of course, with Saab being a GM holding, getting a vehicle right means its ultimate demise (see: Corvair, Fiero, et al) and the 9-7x died at the end of the 2009 model year with the closure of the Moraine plant.
That makes this one relatively rare truck, as there were fewer than 650 Aeros built over the course of its two-year run. This particular one also happens to be a Canadian-market model which means it has instruments that read in metrics. That makes it all the more interesting, but likely confounding for Americans as most of us think of the metric system as a tool of Satan and Jimmy Carter.
The drivetrain of the Aero is that 6-litre LS2 which was sourced from the Corvette and shared in the GMT360 fam with the Chevy Trailblazer SS. Here it was factory spec’d for 390 horsepower while paired with a four-speed automatic and all-wheel drive.
The seller details the truck’s history in the ad, noting that it was originally bought in British Columbia, transferred ownership in Ottawa, and now calls Toronto its home. There, according to the seller, it’s being used by his wife as a daily driver for work and to shuttle the kids back and forth to hockey practice. Does it get any more Canadian than that?
The seller goes on to list all of the truck’s pros and cons, noting most importantly for it to be rust-free with the exception of a small front fender bubble. There are also some stone chips and small dings here and there, as well as water migration into the taillamp housings. The Carbon Flash Metallic paint looks serviceable, and the clouding of the HID headlamps looks minimal even if called out in the ad.
The interior of this 170,000 kilometer (105,000 mile) 9-7x looks to have held up reasonably well over the past decade and that distance. The black and beige color scheme still looks classy and there’s none of the button wear on any of the controls for which this era of GM products is known.
On the downside, the seller does note some crazing in the driver’s seat bolster. There’s also the comically Canadian issue of “On(e) side of the rear defrost tab broken by hockey stick.” Lastly, there’s some staining in the load area from spilled glue as well as a bit of normal wear and tear all over.
Also detailed in the ad is a good bit of mechanical work that has taken place over the truck’s lifetime. That includes normal consumables like the battery and brake elements, but also a lot of stuff that you wouldn’t normally think would wear out, as well as a fix for an engineering flaw in the exhaust manifold seals. That last fix has apparently has only been applied to one side of the LS2. Other repairs included a new starter, radiator, throttle body, and a few other bits.
The list of work gives the impression of a carefully curated daily driver. The retrofitted rear steel springs, aftermarket muffler, and cold air intake imply the present owners wanted something a little more personal.
To make this rare Saab your personal daily driver, or weekend warrior, you’ll need to come up with $15,000. Now before you crap your capris over that, understand that is in Canadian dollars. In Freedom bucks that works out to around $10,564 and change. Of course, any American interested will have to sneak across the border to buy it since we’re in a snit with Canada at the moment.
Do you think it would be worth it to do so? Do you think it would also be a deal for any current Canadian to spend those fifteen thousand Canuck Bucks for this truck? Or, is this rare Aero priced to miss the target no matter where you’re standing?
H/T to RevUnlimiter for the hookup!
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