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Other car companies put their racing technology into their passenger cars. At Saab, we go a step further. We put in the actual engine.
Some of those 9000s go like stink! I had one as a rental a while ago.. and some part of the boost control was broken… so it hauled ass
A recent poll asked James Bond fans, “Which car from the James Bond novels is your favorite?” From a selection that included an Aston Martin, a Jaguar, a Porsche, and four different Bentleys, the surprise winner was a fuel-efficient, mid-priced, Swedish-made “everyday” car - the Saab 900 Turbo.
But this was no ordinary Saab. This was what James Bond called his “Silver Beast,” a car that saw 007 through the first three novels by John Gardner; a car that saw as much action, and delivered just as many surprises, as the beloved Aston Martin DB5. If the DB5 is “the most famous car in the world,” could the Saab be the _SECOND_ most famous car in the world? Okay, maybe not. (That honour may belong to yet another Fleming creation, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.) But the poll reveals that the Saab is clearly a fan favourite and one that deserves to have its history told.
The Saab 900 Turbo was James Bond’s vehicle of choice in three John Gardner Bond novels of the 1980s, starting with License Renewed (1981), which was published to great critical acclaim.
In the book the car is silver colored, even though it is sometimes black or red on some of the bookcovers.
The vehicle got the nickname the “Silver Beast” in the followup Gardner novel, For Special Services (1982) and was once more featuring in Icebreaker (1983).
The Saab is unique in Bond’s car collection, since it is Bond’s personal property, and not provided by Q-Branch. Bond himself has the Saab customized to his liking by security and counter-surveillance experts, Communication Control Systems, Ltd. (CCS), now called Security Intelligence Technology Group. This company did actually exist and advised author John Gardner with ideas about feasible gadgets to be used.
Bond’s Saab 900 is fully loaded with the following features:
- Water-cooled turbo engine modification per Saab Law Enforcement specs, producing a top speed in excess of 170 MPH (elsewhere, I read 145mph and beyond)
- Modified fuel system capable of running on petrol or gasohol
- Halon 12 fire extinguishing system and fire-proofing
- Digital Head-Up Display
- Remote text-messaging system via black box phone hook up to landline
- Mobile phone
- Four external tear gas ducts
- A filter to neutralise deadly gas entering the car’s passenger cabin
- Oxygen masks under the seats in CO2-operated compartment
- Several hidden compartments in dashboard containing TH70 Nitefinder goggles (for driving without headlights), grenades, one unauthorized Ruger Super Blackhawk .44 Magnum revolver and one Browning automatic handgun
- Fully armor-plated body
- Bulletproof glass
- Steel-reinforced ramming bumpers back and front
- Heavy-duty Dunlop Denovos tires, self-sealing even after being hit by bullets
- Black leather upholstery
- Side gunport
- Remote starter kit
- Rotating license plates.
- Air Conditioning
- Cruise Control
- Two halogen fog lamps.
- A fully built in sound system
- Aircraft headlight hidden behind front license plate.
In 1982 Saab constructed a unique real 900 Turbo with the gadgets exactly as described in License Renewed. This 900 included a specially developed turbo changed engine with water injection, increasing the power to 240 BHP from 2000cc and the car launched from 0 - 60 Mph in less than 7 seconds.
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A well-built Swede for every need.
Kids in the back of a Saab 95s
Isn’t that wonderful?
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