Dumpy Weekend Edition: The Saab 96 looks best in brown

Could this be the best-looking promotional image of the Saab 96? The earthy brown suits the duck-billed late model car so very well. Browsing through these shots, I am just imagining how it would have felt like to drive around the nordic fields in a factory fresh little Saab.

Unlike the Allegro, the Saab 96 was a development from decades way earlier than the 1970s. Still, it manages to capture a certain ’70s feeling better than cars born in that time.
It’s likely the 96 wasn’t designed to be a fashion statement, but somehow it appears to be a style icon of the time.
This is the last Saab 96 V4 built, and it was finished on January 3, 1980. The rally legend Erik Carlsson drove it from the Uusikaupunki factory in western Finland to the Trollhättan headquarters in Sweden.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The maximum upload file size: 64 MB. You can upload: image, audio, video. Links to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and other services inserted in the comment text will be automatically embedded. Drop files here

  1. Rover 1 Avatar
    Rover 1

    I had always understood that Saab 96 looks best with things bolted to the roof, regardless of colour.
    Oh yes.
    And with little wire curb feelers.Then they are unimproveable.

  2. Jaap Avatar

    In 2004, I was shown a factoryfresh example with less than 100km on the odometer. It was won somewhere n the late sevennties in some sort of lottery. It had spent it’s time untill 2004 standing in a barn somewhere in Karelia because the lucke elderly lady didn’t drive cars. I wonder if it’s still there and what it would be worth in the meantime.

  3. Manxman Avatar

    The Saab 91 through 96 models are (to me, anyway) the most endearing cars of the last century. Living in France in the 60’s as a dependent in a US military family I remember my first sighting of a 92 passing our Rambler station wagon at 60 mph and thinking “wow, what was that?” It looked so…right.

    1. mdharrell Avatar

      The 91 is a fine machine, but it lacks the roadholding grip of the 92 through 96.

      1. Manxman Avatar

        But much more aerodynamic and faster.

  4. Batshitbox Avatar

    The 95 and 96 were rarely sighted in Boston during the 80s. My sister and I had 99s and 900s, so we had an eye for them. It took a couple years before I realized the poorly fitting hood was a factory thing, because it took a couple years before I’d seen a few, even fewer of which were ‘restored’.

    1. Sjalabais Avatar

      Didn’t they even seat seven? Hood fitting is the result of typically abusive ownership*.
      *confident theory.

      1. mdharrell Avatar

        No, they really do fit that way from the factory. There is no way to bring the hood and fenders into closer alignment; they’re simply not the right shape for each other. I’ve never encountered a convincing justification for this.

  5. Batshitbox Avatar

    I believe that’s “Antelope Brown” according to the ever handy SAAB color database, which includes this pic of an Antelope Brown 96 wearing a set of soccer balls my favorite rims ever.

    1. dead_elvis Avatar

      A friend of mine had an early 99 in the same color. Looked absolutely fantastic.
      I had no idea the 96 was still in production after the 99 started.

  6. Wm. B. Beefeater Avatar
    Wm. B. Beefeater

    My science teacher had the wagon in a wedgewood blue. I loved the pointy tail fins on it. For some reason, that car reminded me of a chipmunk.

  7. Guru_Woodman Avatar

    My brown Saab 96 saved my life.

  8. Cardo Scofidio Avatar
    Cardo Scofidio

    The best color for a Saab 96 is white.

%d bloggers like this: