Many thanks to all of you who contributed input for my decision on a new car -- I was amazed at the response and the breadth of the information provided. Special thanks to Blog Ally Boi from Troy for his views and call to action -- hopefully he got HIS new set of wheels today.
After much research, agonizing, consultation with the significant other, and reading of tea leaves, we have a winner....tonight at 5:30 PM CDT, I took delivery of my Satin Gray Saab 9-2x Aero with 5-speed manual transmission, Premium Package (leather upholstery and xenon headlights), Sport Package (17-inch wheels, power moonroof), and Cold Weather Package (heated seats, heated exterior mirrors, and heated windshield wipers).
Why the 9-2x? Two reasons:
-- Flexible driving. The Aero's 2.0 liter turbocharged four is an engine of two personalities. Around town, it pulls steadily and sedately, pretending it's an ordinary compact.....but hold down the throttle, count one - two, and the car does an excellent imitation of an Ariane rocket blasting off, the power coming on in a peaky surge as the turbo spools up, the all-wheel-drive applying every last bit of the thrust to the road beneath. Come to a corner and you can throw it around like a slot car, body roll next to nonexistent (one of the advantages of a boxer four-cylinder's lower center of gravity).
Such is NDT's personality. (grin)
-- Practical motoring. Four doors, folding seats, hatchback, and that beautiful Saab front end. Brilliant headlights, buttery two-tone Swedish leather seats, 6 CD stereo.....and, in stealthy Satin Gray, not likely to draw much attention from the local constabulary despite the hood scoop and hatch spoiler and NDT's habits of making maximum use of traffic openings.
Also, if any of you are considering the 9-2x, I'll be happy to tell you more....and the current dealer incentives through the end of May are running VERY high.
So.....now that you know what I drive, I'd like to know what all y'all drive. Any volunteers?