We’re big fans of Saabs here at Autos Cheat Sheet. Despite some fits and starts, it looks like the company is really, truly, dead as a doornail now. Lucky for us, in its eight-decade run, Saab built some of the most unique, forward-thinking cars on the planet, and ended up developing a small but loyal cult of fans who felt the Swedish company could do no wrong.
Picture this: It’s the end of World War II, and an aerospace company with no automotive experience wants to design a car. Instead of hiring outsiders, it puts its engineers to designing and building a car that can handle the brutal winters and rough roads of Sweden. The result is a compact, front-wheel drive car with a focus on aerodynamics, comfort, safety, and a little performance. Now don’t stray far from that until well into the next century – even if it means financial hardship – and you’ve got Saab.
What’s more, by the late ’60s, the company had found a design language that would inform every model it would build after. Because of all that, Saab was the ultimate anti-establishment car company, willing to question the automotive status quo again and again to try something different, even if it didn’t ultimately work out. While we aren’t likely to see another carmaker like it again anytime soon, here’s a look at 10 Saabs that made the company the iconoclast it was.