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Junkyard Gem: 1972 Saab 96

More than a thousand years ago, Scandinavian invaders conquered much of northern England and Danes came to rule the old Roman city they called Jórvík. The Danelaw is long gone, but I visited that city (now known as York) a couple of months back and found some ancient Scandinavian treasure in a junkyard scrapyard there: a Saab 96, as rusty as a long-buried iron Viking sword but still recognizable.

We saw a 1973 Saab 95, the wagon version of this car, in a California boneyard last fall. 1973 was the last year for the 95 and 96 in the United States, but 96 sales continued in the United Kingdom through 1976.

England is damp year-round and they have a generous hand with the road salt there in winter. The level of corrosion on this car would impress even a Michigan resident.

The amount of vegetation, rodent droppings and moss is impressive. It must have sat outdoors, maybe half-buried, for decades.

Still, I found very few cars built before 2000 during my scrapyard explorations in England (with some notable exceptions) and these old Saabs are cool, so I photographed it.

At first, the 96 was built with a three-cylinder two-stroke engine. For 1967, Saab began installing the Ford Taunus V4 engine in these cars, and that’s what’s here.

The odometer shows that it reached nearly 100,000 miles (or maybe 200,000 or 700,000 miles— it’s impossible to tell with a five-digit odometer).

Even in freezing Yorkshire winter weather, the mildew in this interior could be smelled from a couple of rows away.

Restorable? Not in this condition, though the 96 has many fans in Britain.

Would you put the horse behind the cart? Of course not, which is why you wanted a front-wheel-drive Saab 96!



This article was originally published by a www.autoblog.com . Read the Original article here. .

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