Reborn from the ashes of a crumbling auto industry last year, Saab‘s latest concept is appropriately named PhoeniX.
The creation of Saab’s new design boss Jason Castriota, the PhoeniX is anything but beautiful. It is, however, an interesting look at what the Swedish automaker will bring to market in the near future. Perhaps the most exciting bit of news is a 200-hp turbocharged 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine that is mated to a 34-hp hybrid system to drive the rear wheels as well. Under normal operation, the eXDW system powers the front wheels, but can deliver power to the rear when added grip is necessary. Both start-stop technology and regenerative braking are included in the drivetrain. With it, Saab claims a 50-mpg rating.
For the techies out there, another important feature is the Saab iQon telematics system that uses Google’s Android operating system to deliver navigation, music storage and smart-phone connectivity.
These technologies, as well as the design of the PhoeniX, will find their way into the next generation of Saab products. “This is not a promise or a flight of fancy,” said Castriota at the car’s unveiling in Geneva, “but where the future of Saab is going.”