Some news snippets

Gotta love this.  India is on the rise as an IT power.  But they’ve gotta get their language issues sorted along the way too….

General Motors is not alone in making huge losses. Their subsidiaries are doing no good either.

Think about it.

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The Saab 9-3 SportCombi will make it’s debut in Thailand today at the opening of the 22nd Thailand International Motor Expo.  In a small sign of arrogance, Thailand’s sales leader, Toyota, won’t be participating in the show.

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The Saab 9-5 has shown up in a survey we’d rather not see.  It’s been conducted by pommy firm Warranty Direct and is inflammatorily entitled "Cars we can rely upon…to fail" (is inflammatorily even a word?).

The 9-5 placed second in the survey, based upon test samples of cars from 2000-2002 (i.e. it’s a survey for the used car market).  The Saab reported a problem rate of 55 in 100 cars.  The average repair cost of the fault was in the lower range of all cars tested at 310 Brit Pounds (can’t find the right key for the symbol).

As mentioned, it’s a fairly damning title for a report.  They don’t seem to mention the nature of the failures reported or any other details about the samples.  UK motor industry representative group the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders aren’t happy with the results and have demanded more information on the testing and methodology but have so far run into a brick wall.

Mud sticks though.  If there’s one way to avoid it, it’s better quality control.  There’s no doubt in my mind that the 9-5 of that era is a beautiful car.  Saab have just got to do better to ensure that that’s everyone’s lasting impression.

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One of the interesting things about checking the newswires is seeing reputable news providers recycling old stories just to get them onto news feeds and scrape up another miniscule bit of traffic.  Disappointingly, ITV Motoring has chosen to do this today, and it’s come back to bite them on the bum.

They’re re-running a story from September hailing the new Saab diesel engine that will be developed with Subaru for use in the 9-6x.  The story was originally run late in September – around a week before GM sold it’s stake in Subaru and canned the 9-6x completely.

Shame ITV, shame.

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I’m pleased to report that I’ve just received a copy of "Mr Saab" from Elkparts.  It only came in yesterday but I’m already halfway through – what a fantastic read!  I’ll be writing up a full review shortly, but I can give this book a hearty recommendation already.

It’s full of detail about the golden years of Erik Carlsson’s rally career, which were in essence, the golden years for Saab in rallying.  I actually laughed out loud at some of the anecdotes in there and it’s strengthened my motivation to get to one of these Saab owner’s gatherings in the next few years so I can meet the great man.

"Mr Saab" is no longer in print and John at Elkparts advises me that he’s recently purchased the last of the English language copies of the book.  Once they’re gone you’ll be searching Ebay and Amazon for a copy and they don’t seem to pop up often.

The info and ordering page for "Mr Saab" at Elkparts is available here.

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