Tuesday Snippets

I owe a quick apology to all those that have emailed me in the last week or so without me getting back to them. It’s been pretty busy here with all the Motor Show stuff and the sheer volume of emails.

As a mass response to those that emailed me about it – Yes, I have now seen the Saab US advertising survey, however I’m still endeavouring to follow the correct path that allows me to see the imagery (I’m aware of the correct path, just need to get onto a different PC as it’s cookie based). Thanks to all that let me know about it.

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The Aero-X really is cooking up a storm here in Australia at the Motor Show in Sydney. There’s been a bunch of articles about it as well as considerable coverage about the biofuel debate here in Australia.

Hi-Octane Glamour

Saab Goes Green with Even Better Performance Environmental Leadership on Show

Saab drives biofuel debate

Sadly, I think any hopes we have for seeing E85 here in the near future are misplaced. The following should give you Aussies out there a reasonable insight into how our elected government is feeling about the issue.

I ran an article earlier this month where Australian Saab head honcho, Parveen Batish, presented Saab Biopower at a conference in Sydney. The promise at that time was to bring four Saab Biopower vehicles here to Australia to show off to government and the press.

Information received since that time indicates that Saab Oz received a phone call shortly thereafter from the government department responsible for interfering with such things. The caller stated that they were going to restrict the registration of the Saab Biopower vehicles so that they could only be driven by GM employees on the roads, which would mean press access would be restricted to the track only, and in practical terms it would also rule out any meaningful governement assessment.

Fortunately they’ve since recanted and Saab’s Biopower vehicles should be arriving shortly.

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Comments on yesterday’s post on dealer servicing were interesting.

As expected it seems to vary from dealer to dealer with some being well regarded and some being quite poor. More interesting were the comments from Saab technicians, who recall being treated pretty poorly by their employer (i.e. the dealership). Combine this with the Pre-Delivery Inspection post I did a while ago and it seems many dealerships have a way to go in the customer service department. It’s not just about smiling and being nice.

It looks like this comes down to a micro level. Dealers will live or die by their own service ethos but unfortunately it reflects on the brand as well.

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It’s October 31st, which means sales figures will be forthcoming in the next few days.

Saab globally are aiming for a record-making and profitable year so it’ll be interesting to see the numbers in the next 36 hours or so.

As reported last month, Saab USA need around 3,500 vehicle sales this month if they’re to have a realistic chance of catching last year’s sales total.

Fingers crossed.

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A new month also means a new monthly calendar.

C900 fans – clear your desktops!

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GM Inside News will be running a “GM Revitalisation in Action” post on Saab shortly. It’ll be their take on what the Saab lineup could be with the right resources put in place etc.

It should be interesting. Their last ‘RIA’ post was on buick and sparked a fair bit of discussion over there. Hopefully the Saab piece will do the same.

I’ll post a link as soon as it’s available.

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3 Comments

  1. Swade, I don’t get it… Why are you not allowed to just run your cars with Ethanol in Australia? Do they consider it dangerous or something? I mean, you don’t have to worry about problems in cold condition or so…

  2. ctm,

    At the moment the government’s position is E10 is the maximum ethanol mix allowed to be sold from service stations. Until they change that and offer some encouragement similar to the manner your government did in Sweden I don’t think the market will have any reason to change.

    I heard some time ago that the big manufacturers were also worried about warranty ramifications if people put unsuitable fuel into their cars etc, so they’ve been lobbying against big change as well.

    The good thing is that the debate has begun, which is the only way we were ever going to progress.

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