Life post-Suuby

Wards Auto have a few quotes from Jay Spenchian about Saab’s plans now that the partnership with Subaru has gone the way of the dodo.

It’s common knowledge that the 9-6x has bitten the dust.  The collective sigh of relief still rings around the globe.  The 9-2x will continue to be offered through 2007, a deal that must have been negotiated into the sale.

So what of a 9-2 related model after the current one phases out?  There’s been stories around the traps, fuelled by Saab sources, that a new 9-2 segment model would be developed from the same platform underpinning the Opel Astra.  I’m quite sure that this will happen.  Jay seems to be practicing his favourite poker face, however.

“We don’t have concrete plans to replace the 9-2X beyond ’07. We’re in the discussion stage, and again a lot depends on how well we can do it,” he says. “If you don’t do it right, especially in this segment, consumers call you on it pretty quick. I’d rather take my time and make sure it’s a Saab than rush into something just to avoid a lag.”

About the 9-6x and it’s segment, I think he’s right on the money…

“I’m optimistic. We’ll get a 6-passenger (cross/utility) vehicle,” Spenchian says. “It just won’t happen immediately. There’ll be a gap. Importantly, we’ve got to do it right, and maybe in the long haul this ends up being the best thing to happen in terms of turning Saab around.

“We might have been subject to a lot of criticism that we’ve had in the past: Is it truly a Saab? I think ultimately now we won’t have to defend any of that.”


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