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Saab makes subtle changes to the 9-5

Mass changes: The updated Saab 9-5 is claimed to have 1265 improvements.

Safety, driver control and engine performance are the main beneficiaries of the Saab 9-5 upgrade

12 Jul 2001

SAAB has released the first official pictures of its updated 9-5, due to replace the existing line-up around November.

Although virtually unchanged visually, Saab says the revised 9-5 scores 1265 subtle improvements.

Modifications to the chassis are claimed to improve "driver control" and the engines have been tweaked to deliver better performance and economy. Saab claims safety levels are also enhanced.

European buyers will be able to specify a new 3.0-litre, V6, common rail turbo-diesel that puts out 131kW and 350Nm - but we won't get it.

"Australia is not a diesel market," Saab Australia spokesman Paul Ellis said.

The 9-5 has been a steady sales performer since its introduction in 1997. It notched up 765 sales last year - an average of just over 60 a month.

Marketing incentives this year have boosted sales further, with 554 9-5s finding new owners until the end of June.

The launch of the updated model should help sustain buyer interest in the 9-5 as a host of fresh rivals line up against it.

Audi launched its all-new A4 earlier this month and Jaguar's X-Type and BMW's facelifted 3 Series sedan will join the fray towards the end of the year.

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