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Saab 9-4X officially on sale

The first examples of the Saab 9-4X crossover are reaching US dealerships now.

Saab has officially begun selling the 9-4X crossover, with the first examples arriving at US dealerships now. That Saab now has an entry into the increasingly-competitive crossover market comes as crucially important news to the beleaguered Swedish automaker. Saab struggled with production stoppages and near-bankruptcy before an injection of capital from Chinese automakers and investors.

The Saab 9-4X, which shares its underpinnings with the Cadillac SRX, began production at a General Motors plant in Mexico in February. 100 orders have been placed for the 9-4X thus far. The first example was confirmed sold from the Saab North Olmstead dealership in Cleveland last weekend.

Saab was bought out last year by a then-little-known Dutch automaker called Spyker, which recently renamed itself Swedish Automobiles. Before long, a shortage of funding forced the assembly lines at Saab's plant in Trollhattan, Sweden to stop as some parts suppliers could not be paid. However, Pang Da Automobiles, a chain of Chinese automobile dealers, has bought a $157 million stake in Saab and a large number of cars for distribution in the Chinese market.

The Saab 9-4X starts at $34,205 for the base front-wheel-drive version and $48,835 for the turbocharged all-wheel-drive version, which uses the 2.8L turbo V6 from the now-discontinued Cadillac SRX turbo. Saab's previous attempt at a crossover/sport-utility vehicle, the 9-7X, was a sales disaster as it was little more than a Chevrolet Trailblazer with a premium price tag. Saab has sold 3,471 vehicles in the United States so far this year.

Source: Automotive News