A Chance Encounter With A Rare SAAB!
It was a dream come true. . .
By: Ardnek Poisoning, October 29, 2017
It was a dream come true for me to meet and greet a pretty little red SAAB Sonett II. It’s a very rare sight to see a beautiful car such as this one, it’s even more rare to get up close and personal with one. It was the star of the car show that I attended back in June of 2017, at least in my opinion.
It was almost 10o degrees (37c) by noon on that day, but even that heat would not stop me. I kept coming back to look at this beauty several times over. The front end was propped open so people could have a look at the engine. This is also how the engine was accessed. (You had to remove the whole front end of the SAAB Sonett IIIs in order to gain proper access to their engine.)
SAAB Sonett II ©2017 KLH
I ended up having to go alone that day. I wanted to take my dad with me to the show as a Father’s Day gift. Unfortunately life does not always go as planned. I still had a great time regardless, and he too got to see this beauty up close and in person, when he came to pick me up at the end of the show.
It made his day, so in a weird way it still kind of worked out for both of us, as I was able to show him all the cars at the show that day via camera. It was a lot of fun looking at the pictures and talking about the cars. He told me about some of the cars he had growing up and also ones he admired back in the day. It was great way for father and daughter to do some bonding.
At the car show I met the owner of this beauty. I do not remember her name but knew she absolutely loved the car. She and I talked for a while about the car.
She told me that the car had been sitting out the elements for 20 years, and had it restored to its former glory. She informed me that she is the only owner of this car and that she had bought it new back in 1969. Her SAAB had the Ford V4, 4 stroke Taunus engine in it.
Ford Taunus V4 4 stroke engine ©2017 KLH
They were originally equipped with a three-cylinder, two-stroke engine generating 60 horsepower (45 kW), the Sonett II achieved 0 to 100 km/h (0–62 mph) time of 12.5 seconds, with a top speed of 150 km/h (93 mph). All Sonett II were left hand drive (LHD). Of the 28 Sonett IIs manufactured in 1966 all were equipped with 841cc three cylinder two stroke engines. SAAB produced serial numbers 29 through 258 with the, two stroke engine, serial number 259 was the first Sonett to have the V4 engine.
The black interior is not original to the car. They were a tan colored interior much the same as the SAAB Sonett III. The interior still looked quite stunning regardless of its color. The dashboard is original to the car. She told me these cars did not come with a stereo and that she had installed a 6 CD changer in it and that it was a hell of a job to do.
SAAB Sonett II dash board. ©2017 KLH
SAAB Sonett II interior shot (Black interior is not original to the car, they were tan.) ©2017 KLH
We also talked about the transmission and it’s freewheeling. She explained to me that the transmission had some flaws and certain parts of it were known to break off. She also told me that she had disabled the freewheeling on it and also made some other mods to the engine for racing. (These cars were designed for racing.) My dad owns a SAAB Sonett III and he also disabled the freewheeling on his because he absolutely hated it.
We then talked a bit about the racing she did in this beauty. She did some circuits up in Washington State and a, cross country run, as well. She said it was a lot of fun to race this car. Perhaps she will race it once again. She never told me how she placed in the races. I would like to imagine she did well. I appreciated her taking the time to tell me about her SAAB.
I had a fantastic time at the show and saw many stunning cars. This is one car I may never see again (unless I go to the SAAB museum in Sweden). I was amazed by its beauty and honored that I got to see this rare gem in person.