Saab Unveils New Interior Driver Focus For The 2007 9-3 Range

Saab 9-3

Saab 9-3

The view from the driver's seat is the main focus of the model year 2007 enhancements to the Saab 9-3 Sport Saloon, SportWagon and Convertible ranges.

The front fascia, instrument displays and controls have been given a cleaner and sharper look, while also improving driver interaction and communication. The result is a cockpit-inspired driving environment that retains a distinctive Saab feel.

The sporty performance of the mid-range 175 and 210 bhp turbo engines is also brought into sharper focus by the standard fitment of a close-ratio, six-speed manual transmission.

Design Focus

The main instrument panel, including new infotainment systems, is now framed by a matte chrome line, with the same finish given to all key controls, which are now rotary in function. In overall visual effect, the new cockpit is a modern interpretation of the look of the classic, first generation Saab 900 main fascia, while the move to rotary controls also reflects a design theme found in the Saab 9-5.

As part of the strategy to improve driver interaction, the interior design team has also focused on rationalising the number of separate information displays and single-use buttons. As a result, all key driver information is now presented in the main instrument cluster, eliminating the need for the previous high level supplementary display on top of the main fascia. This centralises driver information and warning messages to a single zone, in the lower portion of the speedometer, improving communication as well as the aesthetics of the cockpit design.

For the same reason, the ‘Profiler’ facility, offering driver pre-sets for a wide range of functions is now operated via steering wheel buttons, instead of a push/select fascia knob, with on-screen prompts and selections shown in the main instrument display. Automatic climate control modes, the clock/alarm, speed scale illumination and, where fitted, the anti-theft alarm, parking assistance, rain sensitive wipers and heated seats can all be tailored in this way.

continues... | Part Two
Published 23 August 2006 Melanie Carter

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