Tony O'Kane | Mar 17, 2010

AS SAAB gets used to its new corporate owner Spyker, plans are reportedly afoot for the Swedish manufacturer to introduce its own compact hatchback model.

Currently, Saab is the one of very few mainstream European manufacturers that does not have a small hatchback in the line-up, a situation that Saab Managing Director Jan Ake Jonsson and Spyker CEO Victor Muller are keen to change.

Previous plans for a small Saab hatch used the Opel Corsa’s platform as its basis. However with the company no longer part of GM’s global empire, Saab may instead engineer its own small-car platform for the new vehicle.

Code-named 92 and expected by many to carry the 9-1 badge when it eventually arrives, the small Saab is believed to merge classic design elements of 1950s-vintage Saabs with styling features borrowed from existing models.

Development mules and motor show concepts have yet to surface, but our artist's rendering shows what the upcoming small car might look like.

With major styling influences drawn from the recent 9-X Air and 9-X Biohybrid (above) concepts, the rendering depicts what a three-door compact Saab could materialise as. As with the Audi A3 and MINI Cooper, a convertible model may also be offered.

Information on what powerplants may power the new compact model is scarce, but GM may still be able to supply Saab with engines from its vast technology catalogue.

A hybrid variant that uses the Volt’s series hybrid powertrain has been rumoured, and drivetrain options may include AWD as well as front-wheel drive.

An official launch date for the model is still unknown, however industry pundits expect to see it debut sometime in 2013.

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