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Virtual Adviser's™ opinion
We are here considering two somewhat similar cars, but we can't deny some of the obvious differences. For a start, they are not even classified under the same segment, with the SAAB being a large family car and the Volvo representing sports car vehicle class. The first one has a Opel-engineered powertrain under the hood, a 4-cylinder, 16-valves 150hp unit, while the other one gets its power and torque from a 5-cylinder, 20-valves 140hp engine designed by Volvo.Safety
The fact that the SAAB got tested by the European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP), while the other contender didn't, puts it sky-high safety-wise, in my eyes at least. Still, apart from the official crash test results there are other things we need to be aware of. The first vehicle is a large family car and that gives it a marginal advantage over the sports car competitor, at least that's what statistics show. On the other hand, if we'd like to consider vehicle mass in this context too, which we definitely should, C70 offers a marginal difference of 2% more metal.Reliability
Reliability is not the best thing to consider on the make level, but it is worth mentioning that both brands display similar results in faults and breakdowns, at least on all of the models level. These are the results of an independent reasearch, while our visitors describe reliability of SAAB with an average rating of 4.1, and models under the Volvo badge with 4.5 out of 5. The same official information place 9-3 30% below average, and C70 those same 30% above the first one. We should definitely mention that owners of cars with the same powertrain as 9-3 rank it on average as 3.0, while the one under the competitor's bonnet gets 5.0 out of 5.Performance & Fuel economy
SAAB is a bit more agile, reaching 100km/h in 0.5 seconds less than its competitor. Still, it lacks the power to win the top speed competition, topping at 205 kilometers per hour, exactly the same as the other car does. When it comes to fuel economy the winner has to be 9-3, averaging around 8.1 liters of fuel per 100 kilometers (35 mpg), in combined cycle. We can't ignore that 10% difference compared to C70.
Volvo appears just a bit more reliable, although the difference is truly marginal. The most important thing when deciding between any two vehicles should always be safety, both passive and active. In my opinion, everything taken into account, 9-3 beats the other contender by far, making it the best choice without even considering other things. It all continues in the same direction, with SAAB offering somewhat better performance, just enough to call it quicker. To make things even better, it consumps less fuel! All together, there's not much more to say, in this case I wouldn't even consider anything but SAAB. In any case that's my personal view, built upon all the data available to me. What should decide here though is the way you feel about the two vehicles, and I hope you'll find my guidelines useful in the process. Also, you could use the oportunity to find out which car, everything taken into account, would be the perfect choice for you in the eyes of the virtual adviser™, among thousands of similar, yet so different vehicles.