Saab 9-X Concept vs Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo

First of all, let me just say I’ve always been a fan of the awkward looking Porsche Panamera. The new Sport Turismo Concept version turns an outstanding but strange looking car into something simply outstanding. I think it looks incredible and I’m sure it would be just as amazing to drive.

As I watched the video below, however, I couldn’t help but think of one Michael Mauer’s earlier concepts, the Saab 9-X.

Maybe it’s just me, but watch for yourself.

Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo


Saab 9-X


I’m not sure what I think the similarities are. They’re everywhere. Just cues, not outright transfer, but they’re there. That’s for sure.

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  1. You are right. Two great cars. Just shows how leading edge Saab were with their designs prior to the “troubles”.

  2. Yep, merge the 9-X and the 9-5 Sports Combi, and a Panamera Sports Tourismo it is! Very interesting, thanks for the heads-up!

  3. “There is no contradiction between sportiness and functionality.”

    I like that. Very Saaby. This Panamera Sport Tourismo looks very nice. Too bad it is out of my price range.

  4. Well both are an offspring of Mr Maurer.

    Even the most creative designer keep some lines throughout its entire work.

    BTW, the rear lights of the Porsche are really nice. 😉

  5. I like the Panamera, compared to its rivals: S Class, 7 Series, A8. It’s not an incremental re-hash.

    On its own, I find that it looks like it’s wearing an ill-fitting suit. The design lacks a sense of purpose. Is it supposed to be a focused, sporty car? It has more fat than muscle. It isn’t a luxury limo either: too low and probably too cramped in the back. Overall, it’s mostly a way of telling the world that your (spouse’s) dental practice is doing rather well.

  6. I love the 9-X, it’s still a fresh looking concept! I remember the unveiling in 2001, and how excited I was about Saab’s future. This car, and the 9-3X were Saab’s “statement of intent” from a design perspective. Seems like SOMEONE derailed that plan! The gussied up Subarus and Chevys to follow were just a bit of a disappointment…like thinking you’ve gone home with Julia Roberts but waking up next to Rosanne Barr!!

  7. I like the green dash lighting of the Porsche. Hmm, I wonder why.
    Yes, it looks like Mauer’s influence is evident on both vehicles, especially regarding the blending of sportiness and functionality.

  8. Mauer is a clever guy and frankly, with Saab off the stage, why not use some of the classic design cues and features? In a strange way, the spirit of Saab lives on a little bit here.

  9. I still wish that the 9X and/or 9-3X Crossover Coupe had made it into production. GM stifled so much creativity at Saab that it was criminal.

    BTW there’s no dash in ‘9X’ for the original Mauer concept. ‘9-X’ is the later Bio Hybrid concept.

      1. Second that. Seeing 9-X video gets me in tears. I was so excited by it at the time. 9-3X as well.

        Panamera is fantastic. I wish I´d see one in person some day.

    1. 9X or 9-X often mixed up, it seems.
      I regard the first one as the more elegant and sportier
      The second concept had good looks too, but was a bit bulkier in appearance.
      A shame indeed nothing of those concepts, except some details perhaps, made it into the real world.

  10. Sorry to swim against the tide, and my usual Saab love, but I think the 9x as pictured here was an awful design. Whilst I see the occasional similarity with the Porsche mentioned, the Saab looks more like a Hyundai Veloster on steroids. The lights and grill at the front are totally out of proportion to the surrounding car body. The back looks like they forgot all about it when designing, as per the old BMW 3 series ti hatchbacks. Awful.

  11. Michael Mauer and his team did a good job on that.
    Finally the Panamera gets some good looks, imho it didn’t have before.
    Too much 911 attempts on the 4-door sedan, a bit overstreched muscular looks. And it has got a bit a certain matuvu-aura, that I do not like.
    This concept however is far more intresting indeed.

    This Sport Tourismo is playing in an other league than the 9-X was intended, I guess. I allways regarded that 9-X as a more practical and more elegant opponent of i.e. the audi TT.

    Mauer got my attention, again.

  12. More a Lexus IS Sportcross influence than a 9-X one?
    But that particular Lexus was back then one of the few good looking …

  13. Whether you like it or not…proof is in the pudding…Panameras sell like hot cakes!
    I like Porsches, they managed to keep their design language very recognizable. No need to re-invent a good product every couple of years, just incremental evolution.

  14. Who chose the music for that Saab promo video? It sounds (and looks) like the start of a very bad action movie from 1989 starring Charlie Sheen…

  15. Nice connection to Mauer’s 9X. On a similar note, I made the connection of the new Range Rover Evoque look to the the 9-3X concept that was supposed to be the first 4-wheel drive concept from Saab. And, I subsequently mentioned it to the Land Rover design director. It didn’t appear he knew about this Saab to provide influence but what goes around comes around in design.