Posted by: saabnuts | June 1, 2011

Pushed off of a highway in my Saab

1972 Saab Sonett Sports Car Ad

1972 Saab Sonett Sports Car Ad

It was around 24 years ago that I was driving my 1978 Saab 99 EMS to work in a heavy snow storm in New England.  I was  on a busy interstate highway and my Saab had no trouble handling the deep snow and ice on the roads.

As usual, I was enjoying driving my Saab in the snow save for the vehicles around me.

While I was in the left lane of this interstate highway, a tractor trailer with tandem (two) trailers (in tow) was to my right.  The tandem trailers were not handling the slick highway well at all and were swaying and weaving out of the lane the driver of the truck had chosen.

While I’ll admit that I was a risk taking, young driver when this happened, I did not expect what happened next… the tandem trailer and truck changed lanes into the left lane with me next to it.

In spite of having my lights on and honking, the truck simply moved into my lane, forcing me into what barely counts as a breakdown area on the left edge of this highway.

To my left on this highway was a steep embankment that dropped more than the height of the truck next to me, down below the highway level.  It is the median or center area of this highway and it contains mature, tall pine trees.

Me and my Saab ended up going down the slope, off the highway in deep snow and I was heading for the pine trees which was not a good way to stop from 70 miles per hour (yes it was snowing but that didn’t slow me down).

The Saab 99 EMS was harder to control in the very deep snow while pitched at an angle on the embankment, but I realized I had a few choices: to stop and possibly get stuck in the highway median in the deep snow; to crash into the trees; or my third choice…

I stayed on the gas and accelerated my little Saab 99 EMS. So while I was off the highway, at an angle on the hill, in deep snow, I went faster than 70 MPH and passed the truck and steered myself back up the slope and into the left lane, ahead of the tandem trailer.

It was a frightening experience, and yet my Saab got me through it. There was no damage to the car, I made it to work and I was nearly unable to grasp what had just happened.

I am far more careful in the winter around other vehicles now, but still swear by Saabs and actually enjoy winter driving… provided there aren’t too many people around who should not be out on the roads, or who should also be driving Saabs.

I’ve owned and driven many vehicles including all wheel drive, 4 wheel drive, utility vehicles / SUV / Jeeps… and nothing makes me feel as safe and in control as a Saab, particularly when the road conditions are poor, whether unpaved roads or snow and ice covered winter roads.

We’ve had too many experiences to count, where we passed Jeeps and 4 wheel drive vehicles that could not make it up a steep, icy hill, etc. while we get by with relative ease in our Saabs.  Nearly every snow storm we have involves us going around stuck vehicles that can’t make it up icy hills out of our neighborhood, while our Saabs get around without getting stuck.

Knowing how much we’ve enjoyed owning our front wheel drive Saabs, I wonder what it will be like when we can finally own an all wheel drive Saab with traction control, etc.  From what I’ve seen (and posted on this blog), Saabs are more impressive than ever in winter.

Visit to learn more about current Saab models, special offers from Saab or to locate your nearest (U.S.) Saab dealer.

Saab dealers are offering fantastic prices and special financing options so there has never been a better time to purchase a new Saab.

Remember:  People who test drive a Saab usually buy a Saab.

** Yes, it is almost summer here now, but I’ve wanted to share this Saab story for a long time.

Saab Off-Road Animated Photos

Saab Off-Road Animated Photos


  1. Great story and thankfully a happy ending! 🙂

    • Thanks! I’m lucky to be alive and have many “Saab saved me” stories from the road, but this is one of the most amazing experiences I’ve had in a Saab… but there is another story coming soon!

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