Saab, the Swedish executive car-maker, today announced price cuts, introducing an annual reduction equivalent to an unprecedented 18 per cent off the price of its most popular models.

Announcing lower prices across the board, Saab said it was determined to stay ahead of its executive class rivals in offering customers better value.

Saab Great Britain Managing Director, Jonathan Nash, said: "We led the executive sector last October by being first to reduce prices in response to customer demand. Over the last few days, a number of our competitors have finally responded. Now, by introducing further reductions, we are back in pole position and determined to stay there".

An immediate average 4.7 per cent lower price for the mid-size 9-3 range follows price reductions in October and February totalling nine per cent and specification improvements last month worth about five per cent. As a result, list prices for the most popular 9-3 models are now a massive 18 per cent less than 12 months ago.

Prices for the larger Saab 9-5 range of saloons and estates now give average savings of almost 12 per cent, including an immediate average price reduction for all models of 4.8 per cent and specification improvements worth 6.9 per cent.

A five-door Saab 9-3SE 2.0 turbo now costs just £19, 295 on the road, a reduction of £1,750. The equivalent model 12 months ago would have cost £22,787, or 18.1 per cent more.

A five-door Saab 9-3SE 2.2TiD is now priced at £18,495, a reduction of £1,750. The same model 12 months ago would have cost £22,510, 21.7 per cent more.

The best-selling Saab 9-5SE 2.0t now costs £23,395, a saving of 16.0 per cent compared to the same model purchased 12 months ago.

Last October Saab introduced an average 7.3 per cent price reduction for the 9-3 range. Mr Nash said: "We have been leading the way in the premium sector of the market and these latest reductions keep us in the vanguard. Customers want reassurance they are getting value for money and that is what we are delivering".

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