SAAB Reviews

The Different Strokes of Britain and Sweden

The Different Strokes of Britain and Sweden

Classic Car Weekly is the UK’s very popular classics newspaper, packed with thousands of classic cars and parts for sale every week and the news stories that matter to real classic car enthusiasts.

Well, it’s here at last, the Classic test we (Saab fans) have all been waiting for. In this weeks issue, this magazine brought us fantastic vintage cars test – Triumph Dolomite Sprint vs Saab 99 Turbo. In this text, the authors try to answer the question – is Canley’s 16-valve performance hit a better buy than Sweden’s turbocharged pioneer?

Saab 99 vs. Triumph Dolomite

Two ‘Heavyweight ‘ 1970’s performance bruisers go head to head in a battle to see which of them really was king of the road back then. Triump’s hero takes on Saab’s pioneer – which is the best buy? Both the Dolomite and Saab 99 made use of Triumph’s “slant four” engine, but when it came to performance versions, they took very different approaches…

You could never disagree that the Dolly sprint wasn’t a force to be reckoned with back then, according to Saab fans from the British Forum – they remember going out for a ride in one as a teenager….and boy was it fast! Also, another fan added the following: “When they’re running, the Dolomite Sprint is a good car but poor quality head casings and overheating issues plagued them, like other Triumph’s, good engineering was thwarted by rubbish quality control.

Here are some more fans’ experiences – “The Sprint engine is relatively easy to fettle these days and a decent rebuild avoids head gasket issues in the future. Mid-range performance is where the Saab would most likely gain an advantage, driven freely there wouldn’t be much in them. My Dad had a sprint and you could hustle it along quite well, but you had to be brave. A family friend had one of the last ones which were made at the Daimler factory, had a group A motor. A ’99 turbonwouldnt see which way that thing went, it was an absolute weapon above 4000 rpm.”

But can our beloved Saab 99 Turbotake this Triumph down a peg or two? You get a copy of Classic Car Weekly to find out. 

Leave a Reply