Product detail lists, the specifications of different equipment lines and their respective features, are not the best part of GoodCarBadCar. In fact, they’re completely absent. The Good Car Guy believes in supplying you with opinion, based on knowledge of those product details and experience with the product.

It’s been a number of weeks since the Saab 9-7X Aero generated surprise amongst a group of bloggers at General Motors’ Milford Proving Grounds near Detroit. I perceived it to be a crazy-fast Chevrolet TrailBlazer – and I was right. But just how fun to drive it would be…. I was yet to see.

Saab.com will tell you everything you need to know about their aging utility vehicle. They won’t display the photograph with a GMC Acadia in the background, showcasing where your SUV$ should go if you’re intent on spending those $ at a GM-owned store. The Acadia/Enclave/Outlook are superior machines in both feel and ownership enjoyment.


If, however, performance is your main reason for buying a GM sport-ute (why you’re looking for performance in an SUV?), the Saab 9-7X Aero and its Corvette-derived powerplant will stir you to your very core. Besides, amongst all the Buick Rainier’s and TrailBlazer’s and Envoy’s and Bravada’s and Ascender’s, the 9-7X was and is the best-looking member of the platform.

The details are lacking. Even on the website. Clicking through the gallery, I notice the 4.2i, the 5.3i, and the Areo. Hmm? Has Saab forgotten how to spell the model nomenclature of its fastest and most expensive SUV? Out of the virtual world and back into the vehicle, you find an interior straight out of 1998 and a skinny steering wheel more suited to an early 90’s Oldsmobile. When spending nearly $50K on a vehicle, you expect top-notch design. Considering that the main point of contact is disappointing and totally out-of-character, that high-dollar figure seems misspent.

For $45,750 in the USA, 390 horsepower and 395 lb-ft of torque is very welcome and appreciated. The 9-7X made every other sport-ute on the Black Lake seem timid. It roared when others growled and punched when others pinched. Straight-line speed was only one of its terrific performance attributes. Cornering in the Aero was as fun as the same activity in the Pontiac Torrent GXP, itself a surprisingly impressive handler.

Yet I stepped out of the 9-7X and wanted to drive something I could recommend to friends and readers. If you’re yearning for performance and want extra space, the 9-7X is way down the list of potential suitors. Sportwagons and smaller crossovers make plenty more sense.

The 9-7X Aero provides one very good reason for buying an expensive Swedish/American ute. It sounds like a Corvette. The other European SUV that can perform this trick is in Mercedes showrooms and costs twice as much.