In Saab's Corner – Overview.

Below you’ll find a five-part series of articles called ‘In Saab’s Corner’.

Right now there is a lot of talk going on about the financial side of this company. We’ve been beaten from pillar to post in certain markets and whilst some of that is warranted – we don’t shy away from our current problems – much of it not and it loses sight of why this company exists in the first place. We are distressed at the moment and we are trying to take measures to protect ourselves for the future. As the rest of the world speculates as to what might happen and the reasons why, I wanted to draw attention back to what this company is all about.

Saab is a company full of exceptional people who design and build cars based on a certain DNA and set of brand pillars. We do things the way we do them for a reason and we believe in the philosophy behind this company.

This is the overview. The following five articles are intended to draw your attention our products and technologies, our people, our brand, and our future with investors from China and what those investments will mean for Saab.

As I write this, Saab’s future is very much at stake. Decisions could be taken next week that deny this company a future that is so close that you can almost literally reach out and touch it.

A great deal has been written about various particular aspects of our business and actions. I hope this series can help people focus on what it is we actually do and what we are very confident about being able to do in the very near future.

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27 Comments

  1. Thank you Steven Wade! Great post with a lot of information! Great work that will enlighting people, hopefully also some important people! 🙂

  2. Swade !!
    Thankyou for a fantastic overview of the “whole” thing.
    It is time to think of positive aspects and stop being Swedish, in the meaning of not putting yourself forward.
    It is my hope that this article is read by alot of people so that finally some sort of proudness of SAAB as a company and the people behind it can be found to help all overcome the current situation and stop the “hate” in all the media comments.

    Good luck to you all !!

    SAAB up!!

  3. Awesome right up!!  I have plastered my “SAVE SAAB” decals all over my cars (again).  I am hoping the Swedish Government wakes up and sees the following SAAB has – especially here in the states. 

    I went to lunch yesterday with some friends from work and I metioned the recent news.  Both of them said, “well Luke, aside from you, who the hell drives a SAAB?”  as we pulled into the restaurant, I parked next to a 9-5 SportCombi, across from my SS was an OG 9-3, 2 rows over, 3 (count them – 3) Classic 900’s and as we were walking into the restaurant, an other SS drove by us. 

    I then explained that this is an everyday occurance.  I see/pass/get passed by at least 5 or 6 on my 20-minute commute to work everyday.  I wish the Swedish Government would see that they literlaly have a gold mine sitting in Trollhattan and the sooner they allow you to do what you need to do, I’ll be seeing more of these cars on my commute and on my lunch break and (hopefully) I’ll be driving the new 9-3, as I can’t wait to get behind the wheel of a true SAAB again.

    1. The 2 Saabs in my garage did not disappear overnight. I still support Saab and continue to look at the Saabs on the Saab dealership lots. 

    2. B.S………….. Did you steal your nick from the Autoweek ppl , if you read the last Autoweek they had a lot of good things to say about the brand . No it’s not over , and I’ll bet you on that .

  4. I agree with you that you’ve come a long way and Saab is much too close to sustainable operations to stop now.  The proof?  There are already companies at the ready to buy Saab out of reorganization/bankruptcy/whatever would result.  People in the know are ready to make it happen.

    The question remains: why would creditors step in now for a portion of their debts when they could wait a few months and get repaid everything?  My speculation is that they do not believe VM and the Saab management team are capable of delivering.  This will require a monumental sales challenge for Saab with each of these organizations.  In fact, you may have to succumb to their wishes or oversight to move ahead.  That will be a challenge.

    I’ve said it previously that Saab still has technology and know-how and could survive as an engineering and design organization that uses either contract manufacturing or designs cars built under another nameplate.  Stranger things happen.

    1. “There are already companies at the ready to buy Saab out of reorganization/bankruptcy/whatever would result.” Thank you, I find this interesting.

  5. Wonderful series of articles. Now if the media would just pick up on the series and give it some widespread attention. Here’s hoping. 

  6. Swade,

    Thoughts from an American Saab owner and company outsider…I bought a 9-3 convertible during the GM bankruptcy worries in 2009.  It was 2008 model and I felt it was a very reasonable price.  I have been very happy with it.  But one of the main reasons I got it was because GM kept emphasizing that they would stand by their warranties.  Thus, I felt, well even if the company has difficulties, I will still have the parts and warranty coverage for several years.

    In this time of a cash crunch for the company, I feel there would be a strong desire to sell remaining inventory.  Potential buyers, however, I feel are concerned that in the Saab/Spyker bankruptcy their warranty would be useless (like Fiat in the 1980s).   Currently, it appears that there is a $7k Saab loyalty discount on many 2011 models good until the end of September.  This could push some people into buying the remaining 9-5s which are beautiful cars.  

    http://saab.bluegrassauto.com/Specials-New.aspx
    I think if I was Saab, I would emphasize that the Saab Parts company is NOT part of the bankruptcy/reorganization because it is a profitable aspect of the company and that whatever happens during this rough patch, there is no reason to believe that the Saab Parts will be sacrificed.  Therefore, any purchases made to the Saab family should still have warranty coverage.  If it was possible to make such a statement as a car company, I think I would.

    Lastly, how many people know about the 7k discount?

  7. SAAB was always a premium brand and a respectable worldwide carmaker. Not a small Swedish Company. Excellent quility products but with lack of promotion and advertising. In my opinion that was your problem for 2010-2011 sales.
    For me a simple test-drive was enough to choose SAAB against to your German competitors. That is the point. You can do it. You people in Sweden should believe in SAAB and save this iconic brand. 
     
    But I cannot understand what is happening in Sweden… “…considerable loss of the goodwill of the company and an impairment of the Saab trademark”.
    What a statement! I dont know about them, but your customers worldwide believe in SAAB and everyone respect this brand as a leading carmaker, Go On and Never Give Up!
     

    1. That statement about loss of goodwill floored me. The 3 judges said they deliberately avoided the media so they wouldn’t be biased (or words to that effect). Where then did they get this idea of loss of goodwill unless it was from printed media? Did they think a few days of not reading papers would remove their bias? Were their names Larry, Curly and Moe?

  8. Thanks for the series of articles, Swade.  Saab still has a lot to contribute in the automotive market.  Let’s hope that Saab can be saved from bankruptcy and that it can flourish again.  I’ve loved saab since I bought my first 900 in 1988 and have owned 7 other Saabs since then.  I can’t imagine driving another car.  If Saab does indeed go under, I won’t have another car brand to fall back on since the others are so boring and staid.  It’s funny, but I’ve loved two car brands in my life – Pontiac and Saab.  I’ve already lost one and don’t want to lose another.

  9. This is just an awesome summary of the current state of Saab. I’ve been anticipating this for long. And still this is just a fraction of what’s into it.

  10. Much needed article! Great piece!
    Back to the cars!
    Tomorrow I will go and get my 95SS Aero TTiD from my dealer in Linköping, Sweden. Unfortunately I had to cancel my 95SC and this car will do great as a replacement 🙂 Not my first pick when it comes to colour (Oak metallic. Still beautiful though) but everything else is spot on. So, from my current 93SC Aero TTiD to this 95SS Aero TTiD.  

  11. Once again Swade you have produced, in these five themes and introduction, a measured, informative, thoughtful and inspirational piece of writing.

    I already felt so but the additional insight you have provided makes me believe all the more that I would be so angry and disappointed if a company and its employees with that much talent and excellent innovations, actual and prospective, were to fail due to the short sighted deliberations of others it would be a travesty of natural justice.

    Here’s hoping that those who have a chance of doing so manage to convince others that Saab’s talent and potential should be allowed to flourish.

    Go Saab, go!
    Ron.

      

  12. There is so much potential with Saab—-around the world—-they have been mismanaged and misunderstood for way too long.  These articles give me hope that finally, they can turn the corner—-but I hope it’s not too late.  The partnerships with the Chinese companies MUST go through.  This is a situation that can literally become a rags to riches success.  Saab can climb off the canvas and get right back into the fight if these partnerships/investments are approved.  It’ll be the roadmap for success in the U.S. and other markets.  Their cars aren’t the problem—-the business model has been the thing to hold Saab back. 

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