Jan-Ake Jonsson is already claiming 2006 to be Saab’s best ever sales year. From “The Local” – Swedish news in English…
Sales in Europe during the first eight months were up 10,794 to 59, 304, an increase of 22 percent. Sales in Sweden of ethanol-powered 9-5 models are being maintained thanks to the introduction of a second motor model.
Saab’s best ever year globally was 2000, when Saab sold 132,000 cars. Jonsson said he hopes to be able to beat that figure this year. Saab sold 128,000 cars. After eight months of 2006, the company has sold 89,377.
At the start of this year, I predicted a possible target in the range of 160,000 and then revised that down to 150,000. The current numbers would indicate a figure in the 135,000-140,000 mark. I pegged my numbers based on a reasonable increase in the US this year (a reasonable assertion after a +11% result in January) but as we know now, the US are aiming for an even year, perhaps a slight increase.
Still, a record’s a record and it’s not to be sneezed at. Live long and prosper you Saab dealers!!
Autoweek have an article on future Saab models, which makes for a slightly depressing and confusing read.
It goes as follows:
9-2x replacement – Maybe. No time frame
9-3 Sport Sedan – replaced with Epsilon 2 model in 2009
9-3 Convertible – in 2010
9-3 SportCombi – maybe 2009, or 2010
9-5 range – also on Epsilon 2, MY2009, late 2008
9-4x – on a mix of Theta and Epsilon 2 platforms, being nicknamed “TE” inside Saab. MY2009, late 2008.
9-7x – won’t be replaced
The sad bits?
The 9-2 is still just a possibility and the fact that there’s nothing new predicted until late 2008.
The confusing bit?
The whole Theta/Epsilon thing. I thought the reason they go for these standard platforms is because they’re standard and can therefore be used to set up various factories around the world for manufacturing. Using a mix of platforms seems to go against the whole basic premise.
Perhaps there’s someone out there with a better understanding who can show us how this works.
I saw my first 9-3 SportCombi on the streets of Hobart yesterday. A silver Linear.
Made me smile. It’s such a fantastic looking car.
Totally non-Saab related, but it would be remiss of me not to acknowledge the passing of a true Australian icon, Steve Irwin (The Crocodile Hunter), who died suddenly after being attacked by a stingray in North Queensland whlst filming a new documentary (and yes, his death was captured on tape).