Saab AB, “Svenska Aeroplan AB (Swedish for “Swedish Aeroplane Limited”), a Swedish aerospace and defence company, had been created in 1937 in Linköping. The company had been established in 1937 for the express purpose of building aircraft for the Swedish Air Force to protect the country’s neutrality as Europe moved closer to war. As the war drew towards a close and the market for fighter planes evaporated, the company began looking for new markets in which to diversify.
An automobile design project was started in 1945 with the internal name X9248. The design project became formally known as Project 92; the 92 being next in production sequence after the Saab 91, a single engine trainer aircraft. In 1948, a company site in Trollhättan was converted to allow automobile assembly and the project moved there, along with the car manufacturing headquarters, which has remained there since. The company made four prototypes named Ursaab or “original Saab”, numbered 92001 through to 92004, before designing the production model, the Saab 92, in 1949.
1960 saw the third major revision to the 92’s platform in the Saab 96. The 96 was an important model for Saab: it was the first Saab to be widely exported out of Sweden. It proved very popular, selling nearly 550,000 examples. Even more important to the company’s fortunes was 1968’s Saab 99. The 99 was the first all-new Saab in 19 years, and unlike its predecessors, severed all ties with the 92. The 99 had many innovations and features that would come to define Saabs for decades: wraparound windscreen, self-repairing bumpers, headlamp washers and side-impact door beams. The design by Sixten Sason was no less revolutionary than the underlying technology, and elements like the Saab “hockey stick” profile graphic continue to influence Saab design.
This little fellow came to us from another shop that was having difficulty deciphering the shift linkage into reverse, for good reasons too! it’s quite unique! We’ve resolved the shift issues (yeah Blake and Mike!) and are not addressing drivability issues such as over heating and a few leaks!