Electric Saab 9-3 for Paris show

* Electric Saab estate starts trials next year * Range of 124 miles * To be revealed at Paris motor show...

Electric Saab 9-3 for Paris show

Saab will unveil an electric 9-3 Sportwagon at the Paris motor show later this month.

The 9-3 ePower has a 135 kW electric motor powered by lithium-ion batteries. It has a top speed of 93mph and a range of 124 miles on a single charge.

Saab will begin field trials in Sweden early next year with a fleet of 70 test cars, so it's just as well the battery pack is capable of working in temperatures as low as -30 degrees C.

Saab says the 9-3 ePower is the first all-electric estate car and claims its engineers have integrated the electric set-up within the shape and dimensions of a standard 9-3 Sportswagon. The battery pack is in the space where the fuel tank and exhaust system would be on the standard car.

All vehicles will be equipped with aircraft-style black box recorders to monitor the performance of the test cars.

Jan Ake Jonsson, Saab Automobile's CEO said: 'The 9-3 ePower programme is our first step towards developing a potential production vehicle that will deliver the sort of advanced performance our customers expect.

'We now look forward to working with our technical partners in developing such a product.'

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