The folks at National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS) have been hoping to take disheveled Swedish brand Saab into a new, sustainable era by making electric vehicles out of Saab chassis. This week, the first in a prototype series of Saab 9-3-based EVs was shown in Sweden.
A press release from NEVS said the basis of the Saab 9-3 EV is a 9-3 Aero model. Batteries were reportedly all placed under the floor, retaining the car’s full interior space and luggage compartment. The release claims to maintain the 9-3’s driving experience with a 50/50 weight distribution and low center of gravity.
NEVS Vice President of Engineering and Product Development Stig Nodin said, “We are happy to present the result of Nevs engineering into a real Saab EV product. The Saab cars’ well-known performance and safety is maintained and we foresee a very good product for the market. When we developed the Saab 9-3 Aero Sedan Model Year 14, we focused on enhancing the driving experience, safety and quality. And the starting point for our development of the Electric Vehicle project was to maintain all the good attributes and characteristics.”
The car shown in Trollhättan, Sweden this week reportedly was one of the first from a prototype series of cars and was built in May. The release said it is equipped with lithium ion batteries, has a range of approximately 200 kilometers, can get from 0 to 60 MPH in about 10 seconds, has a maximum speed of about 75 MPH, and has a maximum horsepower output of 140.
NEVS said there are multiple reasons to build a prototype series of the vehicle, even though its chassis is based heavily on a proven design in that of the final-generation Saab 9-3. Those reasons, as outlined in the release, are:
- To enhance the understanding of EV’s in the complete company.
- To serve as a reference for specification of coming production model(s).
- To be used as a test bench for technical development.
- To verify the manufacturing setup.