V4 FWD to Hayabusa RWD: Custom 1973 Saab Sonett “Sonabusa”

This is from the site Bring a Trailer (https://bringatrailer.com/) ...

This 1973 Saab Sonett III is a penultimate model year example of the Swedish marque’s funky, fiberglass-bodied, FWD sports coupe, though rather than the two-stroke triple of earlier versions or the original Ford-sourced V4, it’s now powered by the high-revving 1300 four of a Suzuki GSXR1300R–otherwise known as the Hayabusa. The ad is short on both details and photos, but the seller insists that “tens and tens of thousands were spent building this thing by a professional shop. Not a driveway hack.” We’d love to hear some spec details, though beyond noting a rear-wheel-drive conversion, none are forthcoming. We did manage to find a few videos of the car however, and it sounds awesome. Find it here on Craigslist in Schenectady, New York for $13,250. Special thanks to BaT reader Jeffrey M. for this submission. Reads the brief ad: “Completely custom 1973 Saab Sonett converted to rear wheel drive and powered by a Hayabusa engine. Fully caged ready for track days, autocross, or just tearing up mountain roads. Tens and tens of thousands spent building this thing. Built by a professional shop. Not a driveway hack job. YouTube Sonabusa for videos.” Photos from the ad aren’t great, and leave out crucial details like the engine bay. We found a few more here at this Saab enthusiast site, and they’re worth checking out. Excluding the poking wheels and hood cutout, the car looks very close to a standard Sonett, which by the way translates from Swedish as “so neat.” We’re not sure what could be done about the engine clearance issue, but improving wheel fitment would definitely help the car’s overall appearances. Here’s a quick look at the interior, showing the new, fully padded cage and harnesses with standard seats. The shifter looks close to stock too, but now (based on how gearchanges sound in the video below) operates the Suzuki donor bike’s sequential six-speed. Those four throttle bodies should at least have no problem with adequate cold air flow. The black stripe seen above has since been removed. The car sounds really good, though none of the videos we found showed what looked like full-throttle acceleration. The Ford V4 likely weighed a good deal more than the ‘Busa motor, and even soaking wet a ’73 Sonett wouldn’t have weighed in more than 1,900 pounds from the factory–with between 170 and almost 200 hp from the big bike motor, this thing should really fly.

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