Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Remove and De-badge SAAB 9-5 Name and Model Emblems From Trunk

Not everyone wants to de-badge their car. That's fine with me, I tend my own knitting. There is nothing wrong with the brand and model badges on the back of the 9-5, but I really do love the way the trunk looks with just the blue SAAB emblem in the center and no other identification.

It is easy to remove the chrome SAAB and 9-5 badges from the trunk ( or boot) . The results are really clean and I think it makes an improvement. The chrome letters and numbers on the SAAB trunk always looked cheap to me and they were great at collecting gunk (as you can see in my 9-5 emblem's "before" picture). I decided to remove the offending parts, leaving only the center emblems to identify my vehicle brand.

To start the de-badging process I used my wife's hairdryer to heat up the emblems. It only took a minute and the letters were loose enough from the heat that they could be pulled off with my fingers. You might want to use dental floss if you have some tougher chrome letters than I did. I think it helped that the foam tape underneath was eight years old.

Next I used a combination of thumbnails, WD-40, paper towels, and a plastic wedge to remove the foam tape and adhesive residue. This part isn't hard, it just takes patience and some muscle. After all of the residue was removed there was an outline of the numbers and letters left on the trunk. I used a clear coat cleaner from Myguiar's to remove the lines without damaging the paint. Everything came clean and there is not difference in paint from the newly exposed parts compared to the rest of the trunk.

I also like the idea of people not knowing what kind of car I have. SAAB is a very rare make in my area. Yes, a few might recognize it as a SAAB from the body shape or the logo, but even less of those will know the model. I want people to see my car and wonder what kind it is.

While I didn't have problems with paint fade (eight years old, but white paint and garage kept), I would caution people that might have discoloration due to weather and time to only take one emblem off at first and check to see what the paint under the area looks like. You might have to stick the emblem back on if the paint is too drastically changed.


  1. nearlynormalizedMarch 7, 2008 at 3:26 AM

    I'm impressed--do you think it will work on removing the sticky stuff that used to hold the door guard? (rubber protection} Not like you I have a 90 Mazda 323.

  2. @nearlynormalized

    It might be worth a try. I would be cautious of hidden clips or connectors under the trim and also paint discoloration, but worst case scenario you end up re-sticking the trim with glue or foam tape if something goes wrong. Good luck!

  3. Looks great. Do you have any ideas on the doing something with the hideous chrome headlight trim?? I have an '06 9 5 and am not sure what to do with it. Tried looking for vendors selling a chrome delete replacement. I would think a carbon fibre look would look cool. Thanks for your ideas.

  4. Thanks! What I've seen people do to get rid of the chrome is to give the trim a light rub with sandpaper and then paint it with spray paint. I haven't come across any aftermarket trim pieces, but my 9-5 is old enough that it doesn't have much chrome beyond the front grill so it's possible it exists and I've skipped over it in my surfing.