Saab Phoenix

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Saab Phoenix

Saab's Phoenix concept car is significant for two reasons: not only does it showcase some of the ideas and technology that will feature on its forthcoming cars, it also heralds the arrival of a new word in the English language: 'aeromotional'.

According to the company, the word is indicative of how the company is taking the aviation-inspired looks of its heritage and combining them with the more modern touches of 'emotion, power and fluidity.'

As a result, its body features what Saab calls 'liquid metal' design, with the shape of the roofline inspired by jet planes and the body seemingly moulded by the wind.

The company says the concept's grille and bonnet are particularly likely to feature on its forthcoming cars.

Inside, the cabin has a minimalist look, with a new version of the familiar Saab dashboard, as well as LED tubes built into the floor that shine through gaps in the carpet to compliment the red ambient lighting.

Saab at Geneva video
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There is also the company's new IQon entertainment and communications system. Based on Google's Android operating system, able to download mobile phone-like applications and access the internet, and operated by a touchscreen, this is appearing at Geneva for the first time.

The system will appear cars in future Saab, and a version of it is already being trialled in a fleet of test cars.

Underneath, the Phoenix is based on the platform of the next 9-3 compact executive, while also indicative of the future is the car's hybrid powertrain: an electric motor driving the rear wheels, with a 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine driving the front wheels and incorporating start-stop technology.

That gives the Phoenix four-wheel drive capability, as well as average fuel economy of 56.5mpg and CO2 emissions of 119g/km.

On the road, the driver can pick from one of three modes: Eco (for the best economy and lowest emissions), Sport (for maximum performance) and Traction, which gives the best grip when pulling away and in slippery conditions.

This, like many of the aspects of the concept, is being further developed by the company and will feature in forthcoming Saab products.

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