Monday, September 08, 2008

Comfort: SAAB 9-3 vs. Volvo S60

In the last few months, Leikin Motor Company has added several SAABs to their pre-owned inventory. This is good because I know a bit about the cars, making it easier for me to sell them. And now that I am driving one for my own personal demo, I'm learning even more — especially what makes them different from Volvo cars. For instance, both Volvo and SAAB claim to make comfortable seats. But which one is better?

My last demo, a 2001 Volvo S60 2.4t, had a very comfortable driver's seat. This was evident despite it having over 157,000 highway miles and despite the fact that I am 6' 3" tall and weigh 200 lbs. The seats were not quite overstuffed armchairs, but they did have enough padding to keep me happy in town or on a long trip. That's important to someone who frequently visits the chiropractor.

When I "traded in" my demo for the 2005 SAAB 9-3 2.0t, I immediately noticed the difference between the seats. The SAAB seats were in much better shape being that the car had only 20,768 miles when I first started driving it. But looks can be deceiving. The SAAB's driver's seat had much thinner padding than the Volvo. Perhaps it can best be described as the difference between a firm and pillow-top mattress. They both do the job, but you definitely notice the difference. The Volvo wins in this category.

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