Project Cheetah – Your say……

One thing I know about running a Saab community website is that everyone’s got something to say if you give them the opportunity ūüôā

Saab are running an efficiency program at the moment called Project Cheetah. We’re aiming to increase our competitiveness wherever we can inside the company. I thought it might be interesting to get your thoughts on where we could do less, or more importantly, do better.

Remember: Cheetah is about increasing efficiency and reducing cost, it’s not directly related to increasing revenues (though that’s a desired result, too, from doing things better). This is a cost-side program, so no suggestions about sales incentives or model configurations at this time, please.

On the other hand, though, your thoughts about marketing materials, for example, would be suitable. Any suggestions on how you, as a customer, could see us increasing our effectiveness in our relationships with you would be most welcome. How do you want us to communicate with you, for example?

How can we do better with what we’ve got if we give it a tweak and make it more effective?

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40 Comments

  1. * Saab maintains an email newsletter list that I’ve been signed up to receive for quite some time (available from your web site).¬† However, it’s been months since the last newsletter went out.¬† This is an essentially free way of connecting directly with your customers (and potential customers), and should be a regular means of communication for Saab.

    * More videos.¬† Swade, when you first started here, you began producing a series of really great videos (I still love the visual of that floating “SAAB” text).¬† They gave excellent insight into the design, development and manufacturing processes, and are another means of communicating your message without great cost (as opposed to traditional advertising).¬† The Video Archive section of Saab’s US web site only features four videos.¬†

    * Finally, an unusual suggestion: Saab has recently achieved widespread goodwill by embracing both candor and humor.¬† Your Facebook page reflects this, and it is in tune with your outside-the-box heritage.¬† I propose you take it a step further and open up an advertising fund for owners and enthusiasts to contribute to.¬† It may seem odd, giving money to a for-profit company, but I’m willing to bet there¬†is a fair number of Saab supporters out there who are willing to pitch in a bit of change for the greater good (I certainly am).¬† Let media outlets pick¬†up on it, and play along with the oddball nature of such a campaign.¬† It would allow Saab enthusiasts and¬†drivers¬†to further take ownership of the brand they love, while helping spread the word for the company.¬† The ads themselves can even be centered around the strange fact that your own customers are footing the bill.¬† It would show non-owners that there’s something about Saab so enchanting and worth fighting for, while letting you advertise without the unwanted cost.¬† For my part, if there were a company so cherished by its customers that they were willing to help financially support it when times were bad, I know I’d investigate what all the fuss was about.¬† This could be a terrific opportunity for Saab.

  2. Marketing: “Saab – The connected Car Manufacturer”
    Saab could find a way to have DIRECT feedback from customers via a strictly moderated forum or whatever mean customers can perceive they have a really direct way to communicate to Saab.

    1. That’s an excellent idea.¬† I sometimes think of reporting issues about my new Saab and see others do the same in the forums.¬† But I feel mentioning it to a Saab dealer won’t do any good.¬† It would be very nice to be able to send or post feedback about the cars to Saab directly and have them acknowledged (or not) by a qualified employee.¬† And by qualified, I mean not the average customer service rep in your own country.

  3. Alyeska2112 has excellent points, all three of them. Swade, I loved those videos! Want more! =D

    Anyway, I know you, Swade, are already well aware of the US dealership problem, but it needs to be said again. I went to a dealer in Denver (historically, a VERY popular Saab city), and inquired about the 9-4X. They had one in stock and he told me it was probably the only one they’d ever have because the company was going out of business. He also knew nothing about the car (couldn’t answer questions about features) and told me it was “a polished Chevy Equinox”. I think dealers like this should be stripped of their right to (try and) sell Saabs. If I wasn’t a Saab enthusiast, he would have actively turned me *away* from Saab.

    1. That salesman is an idiot. ¬†He doesn’t take pride in his work. ¬†Many cars have some strengths. ¬†Even if he has no loyalty to Saab, he should be a good salesman and point out the strengths of his product. ¬†Even if he points out the strengths and weaknesses of Saabs, Saabs are good cars.

  4. Social Media basically. Just create tons of Buzz. Right now the only time I ever see Saab in the News on Auto sites are news about them going out of business.

    Do some hard core comparisons in vehicle costs vs other manufacturers costs. With a 9-3 you get xyz but in a A4 with xyz it comes for $5k more etc. Sponsor shows like fastlanedaily and websites like jalopnik and autoblog instead of golfing events. Tons of social media opportunities out there just not your average billboard and street sign (which I think right now you should completely remove from every area). Re allocate that money to events/media I just mentioned.

    1. Some are the suggestions are nice but increase costs (with the expectation that sales will go up).  How about some suggestions to decrease cost, all of which will probably be unpopular.

      1. Try to save electricity at the factory.
      2. Try to build only cars of only 2-3 colors each day.  For example, Monday will be black and white,  Tuesday is silver, gray.  Wednesday is red, blue, different shade of gray.
      3. Beg Volvo and see if there can be some group purchases, such as batteries, tyres, light bulbs, wipers.
      4. See if Volvo Aero, next door to the factory, can share janitorial staff. ¬†If not, see if everyone can share in cleaning the toilets. ¬†Victor can be assigned two hours in 2012. ¬†ūüėõ
      5. Who owns the Saab Museum?  Maybe sell the building, lease the cars to the new building owner.
      6. Reduce the number of colours of the cars but have 6 month limited editions. ¬†The trouble is that Saabs don’t come in too many colours already.
      7. Reintroduce European Delivery for American, Canadian, and Australian customers but have few frills. ¬†Basically, tell them how to get to Trollhattan and give them a list of hotels. ¬†Merely provide a taxi between the hotels and ANA and provide a tour of the factory. ¬†Saab might get a little more money selling to people direct. ¬†By having factory delivery, it won’t offend dealers too much, hopefully.
      8. See if the workforce can be reduced slightly and discourage sick leave except for severe illness.
      9. See if the workforce is agreeable to work 1 hour more 6 months of the year in return for 1 hours less during the winter.  Perhaps this could save some heating and lighting?
      10. Try to reduce travel among the management, use cheaper hotels.
      11. Whenever employees can spread good news about Saab do so.  For example, if they help a stranded motorist on the highway, mention that they work for Saab.  
      12. See if the local government will offer Saab a tax break, such as property tax break.  Maybe appeal the value of the factory to the tax man?
      13.  Try to reduce company politics so that employees will not hate each other and stab each other in the back.
      14.  See if legal fees can be reduced, possibly by negotiating a lower rate from lawyers.
      15. ¬†For the next version of printed material, reduce the size of unimportant brochures if this results in lower costs. ¬†The important brochures are mostly the owner’s manual and sales brochure. ¬†The other brochures in the owner’s manual package are usually not too important.
      16.  Try to re-negotiate the rates to ship parts.
      17.  See if Volvo, BMW, or Mercedes can join with Saab and jointly negotiate for lower shipping fees to countries outside of Europe and the UK.

  5. I’ve been hopeful that some automotive marque would come up with a new model for automotive distribution and retail sales. ¬†I’ve been very dissatisfied with the US dealer model for sometime — dicker and haggle for new car sales and then really inflate the costs of maintenance through unneeded or over-priced services. ¬†The conventional wisdom holds that the dealership must be somewhat deceptive to be successful. ¬†Do away with that and you’ll be onto something.

    I’d suggest the following: ¬†
    1. ¬†Competitive, open pricing. ¬†You can make it ‘no haggle’ if you’d like, but make the pricing very similar across all dealers. ¬†Quit giving people incentive to buy a car from a dealer 500 miles away to save $3000. ¬†Keep the relationship local.
    2.  Control service costs. Particularly here in the US, Saab has a HORRIBLE reputation for gouging the customer on parts and service.  HORRIBLE.  Get out in front of that.
    3. ¬†Offer an ‘all-inclusive’ maintenance package to assuage consumer fears, something like the ones the Audi or BMW offer. ¬†A ‘one money’ upgrade for three years, four years of service costs would be acceptable.

    I’d like to see a creative way to re-create the Saab retail experience overall. ¬†Perhaps an alliance with another European brand to share dealer networks and service? ¬†Combine with BMW, Volvo, Audi, VW? ¬†Perhaps sign up affiliate service garages from among the long-time Saab independent service network? ¬†Affiliate with a rental car network for retail and repairs? ¬†Contract with a national fleet car company (like Wheels, Inc. in the US) for long-term service management through their network?

    The point: ¬†a smaller OEM like Saab will always have a disproportionate amount of cost in every vehicle with a traditional network of dealers and service garages. ¬†Pay for a part of someone else’s network rather than too much for your own dedicated network.

    1. I’ve never understood nor enjoyed the haggle approach to car buying.¬† When I’m spending that much money, it should be fun.¬† Arguing and jockeying with a car salesman over hidden costs, and waiting for him to “go talk to his manager”, etc., both infuriate me and make me loathe the process in general; hardly a good move when trying to sell cars.

      The first car I bought with my own money was a new Saturn.¬† The experience was just as they advertised at the time – hassle-free, enjoyable and one that I’ve spoken of fondly ever since.¬† The salesman even learned it was my wife’s birthday that day, and put together an impromptu gift of free Saturn schwag.¬† If Saab wants to reintroduce itself to the car-buying public, it could do a lot worse than fully adopting a priced-as-advertised, haggle-free sales approach.

      1. Totaly agree; in case of buying a SAAB it should be about the car and the customer, not the discount!
        Furthermore would I like to see a non-flash website that I can use. If SAAB is (sub)premium than a lot of potential buyers own some Apple items as well.

        I would even like to suggest to keep on chasing Audi, BMW and Mercedes on quality. BUT stop chasing them image wise. What is the problem to be sub-premium and sell 120.000 cars? I think that there is a big sub-premium market to serve.

        Otherwise: good luck with the reconstruction and realy hope to be able to buy a 9-3 sport-combi next year to replace my Subaru!

        Gl

  6. Saab already has a fabulous bottom up perspective on its marketing strategy that in turn is very modular and provides flexibility and innovation for both fans and customers. I do think that SAAB desperately needs to reassess its top down perspective on its long-term strategy, especially in regards to operational strategy and marketing. I would suggest a hard look at the internal and external flow of information that affects supplier relationships, processes and staff. It does not seem like the flow of information is that good; on the other hand I am drawing that conclusion on what is available to the public.

  7. * I am all in for a 9-5 SC. But on the page “build your own car” there is no sign of it.
    I want to be prepared when production starts.

    * When this is working, I think you (or someone skilled like you) should analyze the traffic.You can see wich models, colors, wheels etc. is most popular.This is one way to get quick feedback.

  8. As far as marketing is concerned, print, TV and radio only get you so far. ¬†The big guys will crush you every time with their blitz. ¬†So, how to be ‘guerrilla’ and get your point across? ¬†

    With something like a car where ‘seeing is believing’, one must get people to see the cars. ¬†The tie-up with Rand McNally was great. ¬†Extend that type of marketing with an on-site exhibition company like Marketing Werks (a Chicago, Illinois customer of mine) that will create a marketing road show at events where you’ll want to be. ¬†Put the cars into the path of people that you want to target as customers. ¬†Sporting events, ski resorts, airports, etc. ¬†If people see Saabs in the flesh, they will buy! ¬†

    Finally, Saab MUST (repeat MUST) come up with a competitive lease package for Saabs. ¬†Because of the tenuous nature of the company’s finances there will be plenty of negative speculation about the residual value of the cars at the end of the lease period. ¬†Something must be done to avoid that additional lease cost. ¬†Perhaps offsetting the cost of maintenance during the lease? ¬†There must be a low lease cost OR a reason to justify the higher cost.

  9. I asked a major Saab-only dealer:

    – Do you relay customer/test driver feedback to Saab?- No.
    – Doesn’t Saab ask for that feedback?
    – No.
    Are you as stunned as I was about those answers?
    I can’t understand that Saab doesn’t try regularly to benefit from this valuable information.

  10. they’re are going to have to address the residual values in the US, where Ally the leasing group (previously GMAC) dropped by 5 points, whilst the US has been traditionally a competitive ¬†leasing market when compared internationally, to lease a 94x Aero for example is north of $850 a month, you can get a top of the line Merc ¬†GL SUV here for around the same price points, R350 for less, they are trucks that market at 55-65K compared to 48 K for the 94x…… the dealers are in pain and to drop the residuals therefore increasing the monthly lease costs is another nail that needs to be averted. Saab Nth America needs to replace Ally with a more¬†competitive¬†leasing partner, not a GM legacy¬†propped¬†up by US taxpayers, a bank that’s making money

  11. I think that, given Saab’s well publicized financial woes and the equally well publicized, if premature, reports of its demise, it’s in the brand’s long term interest to address these concerns forthrightly in advertising and at the dealer.

    People will, quite naturally, assume the worst about the brand and absent any reassurances about warranty coverage and parts support, they’ll assume they risk being left out in the cold should the company succumb. The intelligent response to this perceived risk is to not buy a Saab.

    Saab needs to get out in front of this issue, or, at least, catch up with it and candidly let people know what would happen if this were to happen.

  12. Given that Saab have limited range of vehicles and a naturally limited natural demographic, I’d like to suggest that Saab might actually have too many full dealers in the US.

    Rather than support a gamut of dealers, each requiring inventory, point of purchase collateral, sales training and the like, perhaps some of the dealers can be reduced to or replaced by service only facilities. Some of these service only facilities can be drawn from the ranks of independent Saab repair shops, rather than traditional car dealerships. The upside being that many of the these shops have a passion for and, often, a cultural relationship with Saab and Sweden, that a corporate, multi-brand, dealership never can.

    Look at other specialty marques, such as Bentley, Lotus or the like. Although the dealers may be thin on the ground, there are provisions made either to provide service locally away from the dealership or to make getting the car to and from the dealer painless.

    Speaking for myself, if I wanted a Saab, I’d happily make the drive to Dallas (from OKC, about 250 miles) to BUY a Saab if the existing (and marginal) OKC Saab dealership were to stop selling Saab, but I’d want to have the comfort of local service support.

    Interestingly, it’s just this, a lack of local service support, that caused me to sell my last Saab (a 2002 9-3 SE) when I moved to an area that didn’t have a factory service facility. Needless to say, I didn’t buy another Saab then (2006) because of this very issue.

    1. Problem is Sewell Saab in Dallas is now Sewell Mini. You can buy a used Saab in Dallas but not a new Saab. You might consider driving to Cincinnati. Just a thought. Or, drive to Lubbock where you can still buy a new Saab if you like what’s on the lot.

  13. Manufacturing efficiencies that can be gained across model types and the implementation of these on the factory floor requires real vision. Parts can surely be shared under the bonnet and not be seen by the driver. Brake discs, pads, axels, suspension components, all the stuff that bolts up to the frame of the car. Saab have been doing reasonably well on this aspect for quite a while, with 9-3 brakes going onto 9-5 linears being just one example. Saab needs much more of this. What is particularly important though is to retain a differential between models with things that are visible. The last thing Saab needs to do is use the same switch gear in all their cars. Car critics would have a ‘field day’ and journalists would be merciless in their analysis. This was possibly the one glaring aspect of the GM era that shouted Cheap to the demographic, really hurting the impression of uniqueness and solidity one expects to find in a Saab. Cup holders, mirror switches, indicator stalks and all that stuff are assessed every minute by those in the car. Given the GM divorce maybe this will not be such an issue now but it is still a relevant issue for model delineation.

    On the factory floor a real concern is the speed of the line versus the error rate. There is little to be gained making cars fast but badly. Saab’s reputation as being well built must be a top ten goal. Quality control measures must take precedence.
    Look at the little things. BMW decided to take the protective plastic off their doors prior to installation, all to make the workers implicitly more careful, and it worked. Not what you would expect, but a clever and very lateral thinking suggestion that had an impact.

    The just in time model seems to be best practice these days but there have been reports of real issues in recent times when a supply chain stops, for whatever reason. But you can’t keep too much inventory

  14. I use to watch TopGear. It’s a pretty well known show which is viewed all over the world.
    About a year ago, in the last show of that season (I think), they talked about what they were looking forward to in the coming year. And James May expressed his interest in driving Saab 9-5, while showing a picture of the car and telling everybody how fabulous he thinks it looks.
    I think Saab could make a comeback into peoples minds by letting James May drive one.

    1. Fully agree. Love or hate the show it does strike a strong chord with the car buying public (at least here in the UK). Top Gear has always spoken kindly of Saabs, and a chance to showcase the 9-5 (maybe the SC) would be hugely helpful.

  15. Marketing.

    I defected to Audi for my last car 2010 A6 Avant S Line and one thing has me salivating to get a Saab 95 Estate and thats the pictures of the white Hirsch’d body kitted 9-5.

    If Saab (talking UK here but applicable to ROW) was to slap a Hirsch body kit onto 4 or 5 9-5s and pay people to drive them up and down the motorways for maximum exposure. Thats where the majority of Saabs target audience spend their days, and it where the seeds are sown for your peoples next car purchase. These cars need to be seen to exist and this is a bloody cheap marketing exercise for maximum exposure.

    I would happily surrender my A6 and help Saab out with this marketing strategy¬†too ūüėȬ†¬†

  16. *  Saab should sell cars directly to customers via branch offices. BMW is doing that in Germany. That gives us a direct contact to SAAB and the full margin for SAAB.

    *  Technical second level support. If the dealer can not solve a problem provide a web frontend where we can get direct access to  SAAB technical support. Do not rely on a dealerships technical knowledge alone.  

    * As a small manufacturer good relationship to customers is crucial. Provide some  events. Do not hide behind a dealership curtain. Find out what we think.  Saab customers provide a wide range of experience and knowledge.

    * Find a better automatic gearbox.

      

  17. Some ideas.

    1) Connect with the Saab clubs. I noticed there have been some work in this direction, but keep that going. The club members are both customers and free salespeople so provide them with the right tools.

    2) Saab could use a halo car. A new Sonett would be nice, but it’s too expensive for now. What can be done is to break some records. The currently fastest production estate at 278 km/h is the Dodge Magnum SRT8. The Saab 9-5 Aero SportCombi have a top speed of 245 km/h. With soem factory tuning it could boost the top speed to create a record breaker. Another record that can be picked is most powerful production front wheel drive car. If Hirsh tuning would be done in-house prior to delivery it would probably be enough.

  18. This is not so much an idea as the unhatched egg of an idea. I haven’t thought it through in detail. But something I as a Saab owner (which I’m not, as yet) would very much like to have would be an official Wiki type dictionary where I could enter a symptom of something wrong with my car and find possible causes and solutions. This could be partly user-generated content, but overseen by Saab technicians.

    Not only would this be good for the Saab owners, but if some function is added where people after finding out “yes, this Wiki item matches my problem” could indicate this by logging in and adding to a counter for that item, then Saab would have a useful statistic of common problems.

  19. I don’t know if this applies to Saab, but I have a general observation regarding efficiency drives.¬†

    In some businesses, not least in the public sector, they have attempted to save money by changing the administrative processes, often with some new IT to support it, and then directed the core staff to handle their administration themselves. Thus, in the short term, they save money by cutting down on the administrative staff. But it has repeatedly turned out to be a false efficiency. What actually happens is that highly trained and skilled core personnel are suddenly spending much of their time doing administration instead of the activity they’re trained for and that actually produces value for the business. In Sweden, this is a major reason why there are so few police officers seen in the streets even though their numbers have risen, and why doctors spend so little of their time every day actually seeing patients.It is much more “real-world efficient” to let administrative staff handle administration. As that is all they do, they will do it much more efficiently than those that do it once in a while. In the meantime, the specialists can use more of their time doing the valuable work that only they can do.Don’t waste good engineers’ time by having them book their own travel arrangements, fill out holiday application forms, install the new Office version on their computers… Use auxiliary (less-paid) staff for that!

  20. There were lots of very creative advertisments made by saab fans… why doesn’t saab consider using some of them?¬† How about having saab drive across North America to shopping malls and offer test drives? (and do the same in all the major cities financial districts – offering test drives to that demographic that desire upscale transportation.¬† SAAB SWEDISH SENSIBILITY.¬† As for the Chinese market, how about having playing up the Swedish card, and Saab’s aeronautical background by having some Swedish Models dressed up as Flight Attendants in advertising Saab cars. I’m very confident that using Swedish Models will be eye catching (regardless of where they are advertised).

  21. I’ll second the part about new videos, but suggest that we combine that with being more connected to the Saab community. I think you could take that approach to¬†reduce advertising costs by holding a Saab fan-made commercial contest. Offer a relatively nominal prize ($5,000 USD or so) and offer to use the winning entry as an official Saab commercial. Promote this through the usual social networks and get the word out. Cheap publicity, lots of exposure, and everyone gets to see films by passionate Saab enthusiasts.

  22. First of all Saab should improve its marketing. I’m living in Austria and nobody (except the 300 Saab-fans) knows the brand “Saab” here. Especial young people are dreaming about a BMW or an Audi. The youth is important, their are your customers in the future.
    Marketing is so important, don’t save money in this case!

    And I agree with the comments which suggest better communication between company and costumer. Try to get feed-back, it’s the cheapest research.

  23. SAAB has always been a niche brand with a niche market. Stay with that, do not go after Audi, BMW and Benz. Strive to have the same quality as they do, but do not actively compete with them. Instead go for the hatchback and wagon market. Make it an enjoyable car to drive and own, with style, simplicity, utility and the SAAB quirkiness we all came to love. Stay true to what a SAAB really is.

  24. Another one, bring SAAB to Brazil. I have been down in Rio for nearly two weeks now and I haven’t seen one SAAB automobile yet. Nearly every European brand that matters is seling their cars here, the city is now flooded with mostly European brands. Sure, most cars are the cheap econo boxes made by PSA or FIAT, but there are still plenty of Volvo, Land Rover, BMW, Benz and Audi. Plenty of Brazilians can afford SAABs even with the stupidly high import taxes.

    Brazil is now the world’s 4th largest car market, and has surpassed Germany (http://www.cnbc.com/id/44481705/World_s_10_Largest_Auto_Markets?slide=8), with an estimated 5% annual growth. Not selling in the largest markt South of the equator is a big loss for SAAB.

  25. Another thought on cost cutting: 1) this blog is gold dust and the investment is close to zero 2) Nice looking marketing material is just that, nothing else 3) you’re on to somthing here, something bigger than 20k photos from the French riviera, a community of net promoters > amplify our voice and curuate the content

  26. I agree on the newsletter as a virtually free way to connect with clients. I believe that Saab is tops in the auto industry. When a client owns a Saab, do what noone else does, send a birthday card. What better way to breed brand loyality than to show Saab cares, next to quality. 
     As  far as the advertising fund as mentioned by Alyeska2112, It is very odd, but honestly I think there are plenty of saab lovers out there who would give, I would! If thought out and stayed on top of, could be a very good thing, post videos of those giving and the loyality of Saab clients, Sure to raise eyebrows and curiousity to take a test drive.
     My other thought is that a Saab is a well crafted and quality vehicle and should demand the same type of representation from their dealers. The dealers should respond to every inquirery in a timley manner, associates trained about saab, quality, features etc. Another thing that worked for me in the past is when someone comes into the showroom offer coffee soda or water. You wouldnt believe how many smiles and wows you will get, sticking a good saab memory in their mind. Another is have a client appriciation day where saab owners are thanked and new models are available for viewing, inviting the owners to invite a friend to come too. Once people see and experience the Saab differance, things would take off like wildfire. People want to be appriciated, for a company to appriciate their clients is rare these days. Set yourself apart in the auto world. I know Saab is the best, now we must become effecient and show everyone what Saab is made of and that Saab is here to stay!

  27. Hi Swade, This is indeed a great initiative and a step reflecting everyone’s willingness to save this brand. I own 2004 Saab 9-3 and resides in IL, USA and like everyone here love Saab. One thing that I have witnessed constantly during last 4+ year of ownership of Saab is concern about the awareness about this brand among supplier group in IL, USA (if not entire USA). Stores like Pepboys and Autozone etc don’t know what components/parts are for Saab. Saab do share some parts from GM and what comes more of a surprise that they are not even aware that Saab was ever owned by GM. Being competitive requires creating and maintaining appropriate awareness across entire supply chain and I feel that is lacking.

    I know Saab is unique and Saab cannot be a Saab without its uniqueness but one thing that can be done is building quality local spare part market. Any such initiative can add value in numerous ways:
    a) Creating and building awareness in local market that Saab drastically lack.
    b) Reducing spare part cost, thus, lowering maintenance cost and making Saab a more attractive buy.
    c) Helping global economy by providing entrepreneurial opportunities.

    This is just a thought not quite sure how viable it is given the financial condition of Saab.

    1. Well, I bought my 9-3 I for its transportation qualities, big trunk, tailgate decent rear seat space, 1600 kg towing mass. According to your assumption, I should look somewhere else then?

  28. I believe the same cool, conscious design that enthralled early MAC fans is true too o SAAB fans; engineering. If APPLE were to attach itself, as co-owner and co-developers of a new vehicle; a consummate interactive ‘green’ vehicle. A modified onstar/google embracing iCAR would rock the world – and gain enough $$ momentum in Year One china sales to get other markets up to speed and meet production quotas and profit targets. If Steve Jobs were to bless this vision…..WIN – WIN – WIN

  29. If that saves cost for Saab: relaxe the brand image measures at the dealerships. There is no sense in corporate identity in this.
    No more printed broschures. If a customer insists, print it on a colour laser at the dealership.
    Ah, and save the money on adverting firms doing this. I strongly believe that if Saab’s engineers wrote the broschures, they would be much more authentic, more informative and more honest.

    Directly and bidirectionally connect the plant with the customers, sending out information via email (including safety advisories for particular models) and receiving feedback from the customers, e.g through email adresses like powertrain@saab.com etc.

    Do you use electronic ballasts for the fluoscent lamps? Consider those; there are even some avaiable as adapters for T8 sockets to receive the improved T5 lamps.
    Thyl Engelhardt

  30. What about volunteering work? There is a lot of talent and knowledge in the community, and maybe people would be willing to do some work for Saab. E.g., I am a patent attorney and could fancy devoting some time (maybe 15 debitable hours per year) working on Saab patents without charging.

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