Parkers overall rating: 3.5 out of 5 3.5

Saab likes to make links to its aviation heritage and there is almost a cockpit feel when sat in the driving seat. Like the rest of the 9-3 range, build quality is good but the finish and materials used aren't particularly upmarket. However finding a comfortable driving position is easy thanks to outstandingly supportive seats with plenty of adjustment and a multi-position steering wheel.

The raised driving position of the X model also gives and improved view of the road ahead compared with other versions of the 9-3. Quality is good and the controls are easy to work, but it doesn't feel especially upmarket or sophisticated.

The only area that's a real disappointment for comfort in the 9-3X is the relatively cramped rear passenger space it shares with other 9-3 models. Otherwise the 9-3X is comfortable with low noise levels. The front seats are exceptionally good and air conditioning is standard across the range. Features such as the 'nightpanel' button are a useful touch - this dims all the controls and dials, leaving just the relevant part of the speedo illuminated.

Ideal for driving late at night without having the glare from all the instruments. One criticism is the strange handbrake though. While it's stylishly built into the central console, the button is on the end so it's all to easy to trap your thumb which can be very painful.