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I am an avid fan of WRC racing and a subscriber to RallyXS magazine. I finally sat down to read the most current issue and was initially pleased to find a road test of the Ford Focus RS. All parties had nothing but praise for the car . . .which led me to think about why the Viggen received such poor press . . . Let me state up front that some of the positive attributes of the RS, the Viggen can never hope to compete with. One being price when new (approx $10k difference US) and the motorsports heritage (Saab has some, but not on par with Ford in Europe). Additionally, the RS has 335mm 4 piston Brembo brakes. While the Saabs are good, they are not of that spec. Additionally, the suspension set-up is more modern on the RS . . . All this being said - The magazine stated that torque steer adds character and forces the driver to be in control. Not exactly what they said about the Viggen. Also, they praised the motor for it's lack of lag - yet many condemned the Viggen for it's apparent lag (never noticed much myself), etc, etc.
The RS may very well be a better car than the Viggen, and in reality they were never direct competitors for market share. I suppose I will always be baffled why the press praises some traits for one car and condemns another for the same characteristics. That concludes my summertime / Friday rant. Cheers
 

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Quite frankly I think press is crap. Its mainly just the fact that they like the fords. And were like uhm. A performance saab? Ok.. And nitpicked it. IMO They never gave it a chance. And is one of the most underated cars around. I'm actually often told that when I'm at races and such.
 

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The RS and Viggen are in different classes, and, IMHO it's not fair to compare the press they've gotten.

Especially out of a rag like RallyXS, which is obviously going to be happy with the RS.
 

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Trollerator
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the focus is still a FORD!

I never really liked them.

So you can see if I can feel that way about a car that others obviously love, it makes sense that if the press just doesn't "get" Saabs they would not be in any rush to praise it. I think sometimes people have their "loyalties" to certain brands and just shrug off anything else... just a thought.

I keep hearing of how the Viggen had bad press, I've read some of the acrticles... yet i keep hearing about how people that actually race against them are like "what do you have in that crazy Saab?" and seem to really think they totally underestimated it's capability...
 

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HNNLIC
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I totally agree. The Viggen is totally in a different class as the RS. Personally the RS should be compared with the Peugot 206, Citroen Xsara and Hyundai Accent . The Viggen should be compared with the Skoda Octavia, Lancer and Impreza.
 

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Blaque_Out said:
The Viggen should be compared with the Skoda Octavia, Lancer and Impreza.
Meh. I think the Viggen should be compared with 3-series beemers, 40-series volvos, C-series benz's, etc.

Which should plainly show why it got some bad press. It's an entry-level luxury car with a dash of sporting intent, but it has several unfortunate characteristics that few of the other cars in that class have (FWD, mushy outdated suspension, etc.)

No doubt it's a nice car, but the fact that it doesn't really fit into any category well makes it hard for the press and the general public to like it. The press generally don't praise cars like that - they like to sasy "here's car X, it fits into group Y, but it's better than all the other cars in that group."
 

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abdukted1456 said:
the focus is still a FORD!

I never really liked them.
Europe's version of Ford is TOTALLY different than what we get here in the states. Thus, their opinions toward Ford are generally pretty different. I bet if you were exposed to Europe's Fords, you'd love them.
 

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Yeah europes fords are pretty bad ass and MUCH different from US fords.
 

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HNNLIC
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I was referring to the cars of WRC. No necessarily stock production.
 

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I still remember an article comparing the Viggen, S4, M3, and C43AMG. With some minor changes the Viggen could have competed much better in this group but in stock form the only segment the Viggen won was in the emergency lane change manuever (most likely due to frontal weight bias helping to bring the car back in line after being tossed). The rest of the tests the Viggen was either 3rd or 4th (0-60, 100-0 braking, slalom speed). The results were S4 1st, M3 2nd, C43 3rd, Vig 4th. Pretty stiff competition. The Viggen has the most tuning potential with the lowest priced performance parts and was the lowest priced car in the group...throw some money into some suspension and a stage 3 and for the same amount of money or possibly still even less the results would have been MUCH different.
 

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In defense of the press...The folks in the motoring press drive a LOT of cars. A LOT of cars. So they're probably a better, more objective source of info than a neighbor or some guy in a forum...

Case in point: The Boston Globe's Royal Ford (no relation to the manufacturer), who gets deliveries of a couple of cars a week. He drives all kinds of cars, in all kinds of trim levels, in lots of different ways. (Earlier this year, Royal raced in the Lap of America in a Porsche 911 GT3)

So when Royal, a guy who evaluates cars for a living, a guy who loves Saabs, who drove one cross-country in the 70s and calls it one of the best road trips ever, when a guy like this says of a Viggen: "That was just a bad car...handled like shit." -- I'd be inclined to believe him a bit more than someone who dropped $30K on one.

Truth be told...it handles like shit in stock form, which is the usual way they're tested. None of the test cars had a VRK, or stiffer rear anti-sway bar, which would probably alter the test results. For the price of an M3 or 40 series Volvo, I'd get the Viggen (I'm a Saab-lover, through and through) and do the suspension mods and ECU upgrade and then have a bad-ass sleeper that would make the Beemer boys scratch their goatees. (C-class Benz is way too small for me and my expanding brood...)

But the Focus RS is a rally-developed variant meant to compete with the WRX and Evo, all three of them entirely different from Saabs.....Now, the Acura TL (270hp) is a worthy Viggen comparison, even down to the torque steer! It's getting raves for the styling, but panned for the torque steer.
 

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xaamottomaax said:
The Viggen has the most tuning potential with the lowest priced performance parts and was the lowest priced car in the group...throw some money into some suspension and a stage 3 and for the same amount of money or possibly still even less the results would have been MUCH different.
Meh, that's debatable. Throw a $800 chip in the 2.7l S4 and it's in the 350hp range. And it also has 4-link independant suspension at each corner so it arguably has a higher suspension tuning potential as well.
 

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driver found said:
abdukted1456 said:
the focus is still a FORD!

I never really liked them.
Europe's version of Ford is TOTALLY different than what we get here in the states. Thus, their opinions toward Ford are generally pretty different. I bet if you were exposed to Europe's Fords, you'd love them.
I wouldn't bet on that :lol: Being Cornish and a European and all :wink:
 
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