California Autos Examiner

Monday, November 30, 2009

2009 San Francisco Auto Show: Pictures, videos and Saab's last stand?

2010 Ford F-150 Raptor (source: msheena)

This is part two in my coverage of the 2009 San Francisco Auto Show, to read part one you can click here.

When I crossed over to the other hall at the Moscone Center, I got a lump in my throat: There was the Saab display, with the new Saab 9-5 sedan getting center billing. It is hard not be a bit emotional about the Saab brand. My wife and I both have a strong history with the Swedish cars and the thought that Saab might ending is hard to fathom. Saab had planned a press event for the San Francisco show, but literally canceled it a few hours after sending the invite. Looking over the new Saab 9-5, it has all the makings of being a strong entry. There still is hope that Saab might be purchased by outside investors and that the San Francisco show won't be one of the last events for the marque. The Saab stand is already bought and paid for at this week's Los Angeles show, so technically if the company goes into the history books the LA show would probably be its the last. Let us hope for a miracle. Shots of the 9-5 sedan are in the slideshow below this article.

Also on display at the San Francisco show were the controversial Acura ZDX and Honda Crosstour. These hatchbacks have somewhat awkward styling with the Acura winning the beauty contest (if barely). I am usually a big fan of anything with a hatch, but neither of these cars wins me over. I had held some hope that these cars would be better looking in person, but sadly my opinion did not change upon viewing them up close and personal. My opinion notwithstanding, both the ZDX and Crosstour were surrounded by interested visitors and a friend of mine was quite taken with the ZDX, so they may hit their sales targets. I have embedded a video of the Crosstour below this post and ZDX photos are in the slideshow.

The Ford area was relatively busy in comparison to other manufacturer's displays. A large reason for this was a talking robot that captivated the crowd with a comedy routine. The robot was a great way to keep folks in the Ford area while telling them about innovations like the MyKey system which allows parents to limit speed and audio volume when teen drivers are behind the wheel.

Also receiving a lot of interest from the crowds was the Hyundai Equus luxury sedan. The Equus will slot above the well received Genesis and will be priced in an estimated $40K to $50K range. Interest seemed to be strong, we will see if that translates into sales. Photos of the Equus are in the slideshow below.

The Academy of Art University had a nice collection of classic cars on display and I will post a story and slideshow on the display as my third and final installation of my 2009 San Francisco Auto Show coverage.

Honda Crosstour

Kia Sorrento

Ford MyKey

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