The SAAB Silver Arrow

SAAB Silver Arrow
ER Classics Desktop 2022

First, Saab made unique cars for buyers who drove Saab out of pure conviction. Then came 'Het Management' and 'De Marketeers' as part of the Zeven Plagen. From that moment on, driving became interchangeable until now, where 90% of cars look like interchangeable, convex suppositories.

The Saab turbos

We wander: so Saab turbos. The stubborn Saab was not the first manufacturer to use turbo technology in passenger cars: Porsche, BMW and Chevrolet preceded Saab. Saab, however, supplied the first turbo-charged model for a relatively small engine that was made in large series. And Saab's approach was not so much to increase power at high speeds, but to generate more torque in the mid-speed range.

Above the 3000 rpm the party erupted in all civilization. Compared to the non-blown version, the turbo about the 3.500 rpm 34 delivered more torque than the free-breathing version.

Power on call

In daily deployment, such a turbo appears to deliver its extra power only when it is needed, for example when catching up. Saab stated that the car was just a two liter with injection about 80% of its time. The Turbo provided the Swedish brand with a huge image upgrade. The turbo expert at Saab, Per Gillibrand, came up with the 'wast gate' idea for the turbo charger, and bypass that had to solve the turbo delay after the gas had been released. And it worked. The Saab turbo did its job in an exemplary way and without coming in too brutally.

Under the hood, the Saab looks highly civilized and thorough

Saab test drivers and rally pilots Stig Blomqvist and Per Eklund drove their turbos about 120.000 kilometers with speeds above the 160 km / h. In total, the test turbos covered more than 1.500.000 kilometers. So far… .But: Have you ever let it down that Saabs were no longer made from 2011? How sad is that such a tough yet heart-conquering brand is disappearing in the mists of time?

The numbers & numbers

And how can anyone have number 183 from the 150 made Saab Silver Arrows? That is because a second series of fifty pieces has been produced. Oh yes: there are also sources that report that 180 has been made. Anyway: apparently less than half a dozen are known to the RDW. The 'Edition' is really 'Limited', although time has helped a little.

Specially for NL

That is where it really ends with these Saabs, the Silver Arrows, specially produced for the Netherlands. Those cars were not festively dressed because they were old-fashioned shop daughters. Because at the time, Saab was doing quite well. The Silver Arrows were born in the first year that Saab was able to deliver its two-door turbos. With the Silver Arrow, the intercooler was introduced on the T8, bringing the power to a sturdy 155 hp with an impressively strong mid-range.

The whole yielded a torque of 240 nm / 3000 rpm

at a turbo pressure set at 0,72 bar with a tolerance of 0,05 bar. With our model, the max turbo pressure is generally higher, at about 0,85 bar, because the Saab pressure gauge comes in red and if it is cold up to one third in red! In the event of such violence, either Firezone 102 octane, or Aral 102 or Shell Racing 100 in Germany. Together with the short gearbox ratio and the lower weight of the two-door body, this made for a car that seemed to have gnawed from the steroids jar.

The turbo, which was already arriving at low revs, made sure that this fast-paced Viking in the mid-speed region was almost unbeatable and gave much more expensive and more powerful motorized quadricycles a check. With the two-door version, there was finally a Saab Turbo under the 50.000 guilder for sale! It only saved a few guilders, but still! And with the 'Silver Arrow' Limited Edition version, extra attention was drawn to that.

The looks

The 'make up' of that special series naturally started with the silver metallic jacket that the Swede was wearing. That jacket was then given a suitable red-black striping and 15 ”light-alloy 15 spoked Sunburst rims. Under the hood was Saabs 2.0 8 valve turbo block T8 + Intercooler Catalyst (without catalyst) with a capacity of 155 hp.

On the dashboard was an engraved plate with the production number of the car, the shift knob and the steering wheel were made of wood and the aubergine-colored upholstery was made of velvet. The rear passengers were spoiled with headrests and an armrest.


Just like in the real photo model world, our photo model was spotted by an enthusiast. Now twenty-two years ago. And by Teus Voskuil from Ede. Teus is a restoration company. Teus' business philosophy keeps life organized and the customers happy. One of those customers is Fred Stieltjes, the proud owner of such a now rare Saab Silver Arrow.

The 1985 person, of course, has the name 'The Netherlands' as the country of the first number plate. In the 22 year that owner and car are together, the block was overhauled once and the car was technically upgraded, with respect for the original and the usability. The brakes are tightly tackled, the original rims are neatly stored and the impressive exhaust may have lost its front damper somewhere in time. But of course a turbo in itself is an excellent muffler. Once at the right temperature and with some gas on it, the Silver Arrow sounds cultured hoarse. The bypass under the hood blows off its overpressure with the sound of an angry cat. That is nice to sharpen pedestrians.

The Saab and his owner recently visited Ede for a check-up

In the meantime, the Silver Arrow is on record. Saabs of this vintage are a kind of elegant, yet tough. As the last of the Real Saabs, they have the unique sill cut-outs that also enable smoked ladies to get on and off in style. The velvet of the upholstery is in excellent condition and the interior - just like the rest of the car - has enough patina to make it 'really real'.

Owner Fred is clear about the value of his Saab: the Arrow is priceless. Fred and his deceased beloved wife have interwoven so many kilometers and memories with the Saab that maintaining the car is also a permanent tribute to his deceased wife.

SAAB Silver Arrow


Give a reaction
  1. “The bypass under the hood blows off its overpressure with the sound of an angry cat. That's nice to put pedestrians on edge for a moment ”.
    Where do you do that Dolf?
    If they cross at a “Pedestrian Crossing Place”?

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