Subaru Outback VS Saab 9-3X


Here’s a comparison between the 2010 Saab 9-3X (440 series) and the Subaru Outback. These models are in direct competition for your dollars, the 9-3X being the newest addition to the revitalized model range.

Following the sale of the company by GM (who went bankrupt) to Spkyer as a result of the GFC the company has seemingly streamlined its operations by withdrawal then returning to various markets around the world. We’ve always liked the Saab brand so its nice to see it operating once again. Update 2012: After the original comparison Saab is now obsolete – technically bankrupt and it does not look like it will be back any time soon.

The 9-3X is the wagon version of the regular sedan with higher suspension and AWD transmission. The only other competitors we can buy in this part of the world for the 9-3X is the Subaru Outback or the Volvo XC70 hence we put up this comparison.

As usual we have a love hate relationship with the Outback and nice car but why does it look like last year’s Korean design and drive like a last year’s Camry (2010)?

Having yet to drive the new Saab 9-3X we can only assume that it should be just as nice as the Outback but with typical Saab mid-range power and Saab’s version of AWD called XWD will also make it safer to drive than the regular 9-3. 

The 9-3X exterior design has been around since 2006 but it still looks good in a conservative way. We think wheel arch extensions and plastic do work if applied correctly as seen here. The Saab like most manufacturers have tried to design a front end that looks good and recognizable from other brands and the latest version doesn’t really work. That said it isn’t ugly.

The interior of the 9-3X is a nice place to be but it is getting dated even against the Outback and the Volvo. Material quality is good but still behind other European brands like Mercedes or BMW but the same level as the Subaru but different.
It’s different from the other models but the 9-3X is not special. 

Subaru Outback Saab 9-3X

F4 Petrol
B4 Petrol
SOHC Boxer Engine EFI iAVLS
2.5 Litre (2457cc)
Claimed 123Kw @ 5600RPM
Claimed 229Nm @ 4000RPM

F4 Diesel
IL4 Petrol
Turbo-charged – Intercooler
Direct Injection – Common Rail
2 Litre (1998cc)
Claimed 110Kw @ 3600RPM
Claimed 350Nm @ 1800RPM

F6 Petrol
V6 DOHC Boxer engine EFI Dual AVCS
3.6 Litre (3630cc)
Claimed 191Kw @ 5600RPM
Claimed 350Nm @ 4400RPM

4 Cylinder Turbo (B207R)
IL4 Cylinder petrol
2.0 Litre (1998cc)
Claimed 154Kw @ 5500RPM
Claimed 300Nm @ 2500-4000RPM



Kerb weight 1580 – 1630Kg
Towing capacity up to 1500kg

Kerb weight 1765Kg
Towing capacity up to 1600kg

Fuel capacity & consumption  

Up to 58 litres
IL4 Petrol 10 Lts per 100km AVG (Auto)

Up to 61 litres (Premium only)
IL4 Petrol 10.1Lts per 100km AVG

Other specifications  

6 speed manual or 5 speed Auto
Overall height/width 1680/1820
Overall length/wheelbase 4565/2605
4WD system: AWD
ANCAP Safety: 4/5

5 speed manual or 4 speed Auto
Overall height/width 1576/1802
Overall length/wheelbase 4690/2675
4WD system: AWD
ANCAP Safety: 5/5


Angle of: (degrees)
Approach xx Departure xx Breakover xx
Ground clearance (unloaded) 185mm
Water Fording depth xxmm Max

Angle of: (degrees)
Approach xx Departure xx Breakover xx
Ground clearance (unloaded) xxxmm
Water Fording depth xxmm Max

Petrol (non-turbo)
0-100Kph:9.5 secs

Petrol (turbo)
0-100Kph:9.6 secs


2010 $37,990 – 55,990 AUD
*Always check with the dealer for up to date pricing, specifications, on-road costs, accessories and specials etc.. everything as usual is subject to change!

2010 $59,800 AUD