Saab History

Saab 99 from the Finland’s Historical Perspective

Finland Police Saab

Finnish auto-magazine jokamies.fi has published an interesting article about Saab 99 and its place in the history of automotive, planetary.

In the introductory text they say: “Beauty is in the eye of the viewer, but the last incarnations of Saab 99 did not have any beauty at the end of the ’80s. The massive plastic active bumpers had been replaced by the chrome, which was seen in the 1968 presentation of 99.  Saab’s philosophy was to put safety in the first place, and this company was a great success.

The active bumpers offered better protection against collisions. They could withstand a collision of less than 6 km/ h and return to their shape. This is just one of the interesting features that the famous saab 99 had. Since all Saab 99 was manufactured by Saab-Valmet as a subsidiary to Finland, it was no wonder that Finnish police were interested in using the Saab 99 model.

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Saab 99 was introduced on November 22, 1967, at Teknorama in Stockholm (photo: Atterberg, Magnus, Public Domain)
Saab 99 was introduced on November 22, 1967, at Teknorama in Stockholm (photo: Atterberg, Magnus, Public Domain)

Many Finns remember the blue-white Saab of the police, which had a  emergency vehicle lighting and a loud speaker on the roof. Although Saab engineers liked the company’s existing two-stroke engine, it was decided that a four-stroke engine was necessary, and the choice was a 1.7 L (later 1.85 L) engine from Triumph.  In the automotive world,  Saab was a small car producer, but it also learned to manufacture its own motors, which was seen in the last Model 99 before replacing the model with the 900 model in 1984.

In addition to safety, Saab was also one of the world’s first automobile manufacturers for turbocharged passenger carsThe Saab 99 Turbo was introduced in 1977. There was also a turbocharger from the Garret manufacturer T3 in the B-Class rally car, which boosted its performance by 25% compared to the normal 99 model.

Firstly, it was a good overtaking acceleration. The problem with the first turbines was a limited range of operations, followed by a clear delay between the accelerator pedal depression and the reactor response. But, over time, this problem also has been overcome.

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Goran Aničić
the authorGoran Aničić
For over 10 years, Goran Aničić has been passionately focused on Saab automobiles and everything related to them. His initial encounter with Saab cars took place back in 2003 when the first Saab 9-3 and sedan version were introduced. At that moment, he was captivated by the car's Scandinavian design logic and top-notch engineering, and everything that followed stemmed from that first encounter. Later on, through his work at the editorial team of the Serbian automotive magazines "Autostart" and later "AutoBild," he had the opportunity to engage more closely with Saab vehicles. In 2008, he tested the latest Saab cars of that time, such as the Saab 9-3 TTiD Aero and Saab 9-3 Turbo X. In 2010, as the sole blogger from the region, he participated in the Saab 9-5ng presentation in Trollhättan, Sweden. Alongside journalists from around the world, he got a firsthand experience of the pinnacle of technological offerings from Saab at that time. Currently, Goran owns two Saabs: a 2008 Saab 9-3 Vector Sportcombi with a manual transmission, and a Saab 9-3 Aero Griffin Sport Sedan from the last generation, which rolled off the production line in Trollhättan in December 2011.

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