Hot Hatch: 1990 Saab 900 SPG

When it comes to rare Saabs, genuine Saab 900 SPGs are one of the best choices for putting a limited-production hot hatch in your garage. Equipped from the factory with a number of performance-minded upgrades, they were produced in limited quantities and can be challenging to find today in any grade of condition. This 1990 model is enthusiast-owned that benefits from loads of recent maintenance – and while it wears fresh paint, the respray came at the loss of one of the rarer colors ever offered on an SPG known as Talladega Red. Bidding is cheap at the moment, and the SPG is listed here on eBay with no reserve and bids to just over $2K.

The respray is seemingly a sore topic with the seller, as he says “Don’t ask why” in terms of his decision to paint the Saab a factory Porsche color instead of preserving or re-doing the rare Talladega Red. Regardless, today the SPG is a demure shade of gray that is certainly inoffensive but not nearly as eye-catching as red. The SPGs received factory body kits, firmer suspension, and obviously loads of exclusivity from the factory, with production numbers quite limited and even smaller for rare colors like Talladega Red. The seller rates the respray an 8.5 out of 10, and adds that the trim around the glass was repainted at the same time.

The interior is just OK, with signs of wear and tear readily apparent. The seller also notes that there is a split in the backseat and that the shift boot should be replaced. The condition of the dash pad is obscured by an aftermarket cover, usually a strong indication that there are cracks being covered up. Despite the aforementioned tear, the backseat looks to be in nice shape, but it’s also likely used far less than the front buckets. Still, with mileage approaching 174,000, the interior is holding up and would likely look completely different if the front seats were redone or dyed back to new-look condition.

The seller notes that maintenance under his care has been robust, and the highlights include new Bilstein shocks, springs, brakes, steering column, tasty “Aero” wheels, and a complete engine tune-up. The car is said to run and drive quite well for its age, and the turbo still spools like God intended. This 900 SPG is undoubtedly a limited-production performance car of the 80s, and one that we hardly see anymore. Finding an example like this one that is largely original except for the respray makes it a car worth exploring if you’re on the hunt for a genuine SPG.

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  1. alphasud Member

    I found a Talladega red 1990 SPG for a friend. He still owns it today. Every time he comes to the conclusion to sell it on it get washed and waxed and then he has second thoughts. Among the other rare SPG colors are Monticarlo yellow and Beryl green both of which I worked on at the dealer. Only a couple of those were made. They are nice cars as well. The 900 was like having a station wagon and a hatchback all in one. Once you own one they are hard to part with!

  2. J_Paul Member

    My stepfather was a lifelong Saab enthusiast, and his favorite was his 900 SPG. I spent a lot of time in that car, both as driver and passenger, and it’s a vehicle that I still love despite being VERY flawed. The turbo lag was epic, the shifter was one of the worst I’ve ever encountered (imagine rowing a broomstick through a bucket of pool balls), torque steer was hilarious, and the HVAC controls may as well have been conceived by aliens.

    But…despite those faults, it was a great car. Deceptively fast, solid handling, and ridiculously practical for something so fun. Driving it got me addicted to turbos, and probably was a main driver for me buying a Subaru WRX….it was kind of ironic when, shortly after, Saab began selling my car as the 9-2 Aero!

  3. jerry z

    Someone should buy it and convert to RWD. Doesn’t matter what engine as long as it’s a V8!

    • Geoff

      Why would you want to make it slower and handle worse?

      • donek


  4. EK

    Gotta be a special kind of stupid to ruin a lovely, original car like that and paint it that bland and boring grey. Looks like he gets to pay for that mistake twice. Once when he painted it. The second time when he loses half the value on the sale.
    Would have been a fun buy. A new paint job to make it right will make it more then it’s worth.

  5. SteVen

    One of two favorite sounding cars of all time, along with another neighbor’s 308 GTSi. It was addictive listening to those cars come down the street to a long stop at the stop sign at the bottom of the hill. Glorious automotive notes from my childhood..

  6. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    SOLD for $3,250.

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