GM's Swedish automaker, Saab, has a new badge for '01. The company says the restyled blue roundel now brings together Saab's traditional heraldic Griffin's head and the "SAAB" logotype in a single unified symbol. The new logo will help symbolize the automaker's role as GM's premium worldwide brand, says a company statement.

Carl Fredrik Reutersward, the same Swedish artist who designed the previous Saab-Scania symbol, designed the new one.

Also for '01, OnStar 2.6 is standard on all Saab vehicles. The automaker also has boosted the power on the 9-5's base 2.3L 4 cyl. engine from 170 hp to 185 hp. Meanwhile, the high-performance Aero option now is available for both the 9-5 and the 9-5 wagon.

Saab reportedly is working on a scheme to offer more U.S.-specific models, and that's okay. More worrying is the talk that the company's first "SUV" will be a badged version of the U-van based GM crossovers, the Pontiac Aztek and upcoming Buick Rendezvous. If GM's smart, Saab will at least get to use its own unique engines, but that platform has a long way to go to be a Saab.

Compared to some of the competition's hot stuff, this lineup is looking creaky, and OnStar's not much of a playing-field leveler, now is it?