The biggest SAAB ever made
Was the 906 Turbo too much even for SAAB?
If you haven't been living under a rock for the past few years, you might have noticed that some car manufacturers are making 6-wheeled cars. The Mercedes G63 6x6 is one of them, followed by the Hennessey VelociRaptor 6x6, Kahn Design Flying Huntsman etc.
But, 6-wheeled cars have never really been successful. Do you remember the F1 Tyrell P34? Or maybe the Covini C3A? Exactly! They disappeared in thin air very quickly. A 6-wheeled car has as many benefits as flaws. It can provide you extra grip if you want to go through corners a bit faster than usual. They also provide grip if you plan to go offroad. On the other hand, with extra wheels comes extra weight. It all sounds superb when you talk about it, but when you realize that you need more parts here and there, it stops being fun.
Today, you can find 6 wheels on some SUVs and pickup trucks, not everyday family cars. But, in the past, you had a Citroen CX Tissier Loadrunner, which featured an extra axle. The extra stability that comes with a longer wheelbase allows cars to be longer and more practical. Back in the past, Citroen was making weird cars, so a 6-wheeled CX wasn't so weird. However, no one expected a car from a very serious company, like SAAB, to come with 6 wheels.
Well, this is very wacky...and I like it. Credit: Only Motors
The famous Saab 900 never had an estate brother. The only 2 custom-built 900 Safaris became collector's items. So, the 906 Turbo was not so far away from the Safari, because only one was ever made. It started its life as a 900 GLS, which had the trunk removed. Then, the new spacious trunk was added, which made the car almost a meter longer than the original. In order to improve stability, a third axle was put on the car. Apart from that, to keep all the proportions right, the car was widened by 18cm.
There is no other way to say this, but the 906 Turbo was a very flamboyant car. And a car that stands out like this might need as many gadgets as it can get. In the end, the 906 had: a freezer, fridge, heated cubby holes, 16 speaker sound and video system, and a radar detector. So, that means that you could cruise along in your 5.3 meter yacht/house on wheels while evading law enforcement. Brilliant!
Not a lot is known about the 906, but we can assume that it had the same powertrain as the 900, which probably gave it around 145hp. But I have a confession to make - this is not Saab's official creation. The 906 is a franken-child of Leif Mellberg, a man who made many custom Saabs, including the EV1 and Gullwing Blue Spirit (pictured below). The 906 was used as a promotional car for his custom-car building company for many years, which was a very cool way to promote your business. However, the 906 Turbo is no longer with us.
Few years ago, a picture of this car emerged, though not in the same condition as it once was. The picture was taken at a junkyard in Varberg, Sweden, where this 6-wheeled Titanic is laying unrescued to this day. It seems that it was repainted before it was laid to rest. Once orange, stripes have changed their tones to blue.
And that is all that remains of the biggest Saab ever built-just a rusting shell. Hopefully it'll be saved one day. Maybe some collector will realize its greatness and restore it. Only time will tell, but I'm sure I'm not the only one who would want to see this fantastic piece of history back on the road.
SAAB 906 Turbo resting in peace at a junkyard. Credit: SAABPlanet.com