Press release: Update On Proposed Sale Of Saab Automobile And Saab GB

Trollhättan, Sweden: Swedish Automobile N.V. (Swan) and Saab Automobile AB (Saab Automobile announce they have taken notice of a press statement issued by General Motors Company (General Motors) today regarding the proposed sale of all shares in Saab Automobile and Saab Great Britain Ltd. (Saab GB) to Pang Da Automobile Trade Company Ltd (Pang Da) and Youngman Automotive Group Company Ltd (Youngman).

Swan and Saab Automobile acknowledge the position taken by General Motors and will now discuss with Pang Da and Youngman to see whether a structure can be agreed which is acceptable to all parties concerned.

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19 Comments

  1. Why did they not discuss this with GM much earlier? They should have had an ongoing dialogue with GM so they knew exactly what was ok and what was not. How could SAAB (and VM) be able to not know the GM standpoint? (or did they?)

    1. That’s a question I’ve been thinking about since BEFORE this news even broke last week.  I couldn’t believe Muller was talking optimistically about the deal—-and then reading in the next paragraph that GM had a say in any deal going through.  I kept thinking, am I missing something?

  2. It’s time to get the Save Saab signs out again, and put pressure on GM again. Can someone organize something? Are you allowed to help facilitate any efforts? 

  3. We indeed should set up an action to show GM that they are not able to do whatever they want.
    In Belgium they closed a very well running plant and now they just cut off a plan that they dislike.
    These GM guys should never have had help of the US people.

  4. Perhaps it is a chance for Saab to dump all that is GM with the new chinese investors, start from Phoenix forward. Have the JC 900 (9-3) start Saab over, and fill a niche similar to how Mini only started with one very successful model design and then built on it. It more adequately represents a rebirth of a design vehicle language and Saab creates an identity it can sell sans-GM. Have full blown advertising of a new GM-free car with the best of everything (BMW engine, droid infotainment, hybrid XWD, JC design etc).

    It gets muddy having some GM models and some not, and how can Saab dispel and bash GM with its new product, having GM in all other lineup vehicles.

    1. This is what I had advocated as well.  I thought Saab could probably survive on the strength of the NG Phoenix 9-3 alone, dump the slow selling (and I’m guessing money losing) 9-5 and barely existant 9-4X, and spend the next 3-4 years developing 9-4x and 9-5 replacements off the Phoenix.  Get rid of the yolk of the GM era and start fresh…

      Well, it now turns out as is being discussed on Saabsunited.com that the NG clean-break 9-3 is hardly such.  In fact, the NG 9-3 may be 50% GM tech.  Ooops.   That changes everything… 

      And that’s the problem with your and my vision.  That “rebirth” you’re talking about is half-fueled by GM legacy IP.  And that’s what might kill this…

      And BTW, as pro-Saab and anti-GM as I am right now, I have to admit this makes sense from a GM perspective, especially as their China operations have been keeping the company in business for the past decade or so…

      1. I have to disagree:
        http://www.saabsunited.com/2011/11/auto-express-tweets-new-9-3-image.html

        “The new 9-3 is expected to launch towards the end of next year and
        will come with a variety of petrol and diesel engines, as well as a
        choice of manual and automatic gearboxes. At least one of the planned
        engines – a 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol – will come from BMW.

        The newcomer is based on an all-new chassis, which was developed
        independently of Saab’s previous owner General Motors. Both
        front-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive hybrid versions will be available”

        I believe this “new chassis” actually does come from the Epsilon l platform. So it must have been modified so heavily saab can claim it as their own

        I do agree that GM is just being neutral unless their best interests are in jeopardy.

        1. Let’s hope your barking up the right tree here Brian. If GM don’t allow some kind of deal, which I think would be a bit bizarre, then this derivative of the Epsilon platform or the Phoenix platform will have to be the starting point. I do think though that a deal will be thrashed out with GM, my only worry is what influence is this going to have on the short and long term design of future Saabs?

  5. And so the roller-coaster continues…

    The so-called JC-900 appeared to be well on the way to development long before JC came on the scene. It’ll have GM technology strands running right through. Saab can’t dump GM (yet) – they’d have virtually nothing left. GM clearly want Saab to survive otherwise they’d simply pull the plug on all the licensing deals in place. Change of ownership changes the basis on which deals are done, and the validity of existing deals, possibly including the BMW engine deal.

    …it is hard to sit and watch, but that’s about all we can do!

  6. Funny thing happened on the way to making The Deal (sale, whatever). My driver’s side door lock has been only working sometimes. Oh, this is nothing major, only a minor warranty repair. My 9-3 drives just fine, but I do need to be able to get repair parts sometime. So, while all the business stuff is going on how about doing something to keep the Saabs on the road running. My wife’s backup business plan is for me to start calling myself “50%Saab”.

    Just a thought.

  7. Thank jeebus the drama for once is plain Drama and not the Fat Lady about to open her mouth Drama. Buckle up all, this will (hopefully) be interesting 🙂

  8. I think Saab will need to phase out as much GM IP as it can over the next 3-5 years.  This will shorten the life of some models, but is probably unavoidable.

  9. No matter what happens, we all love and support Saab. I do not think now is the time for blame game. We should focus to keep promoting our love for Saab and not turn this negative and ugly against GM. That behavior only ruins our image of being “intelligent”

    1. James:  I’d rather be ugly and alive than intelligent and dead.  General Motors needs to be dealt with harshly if they succeed in blocking this deal.  No more Mr. Nice Guy here. 

  10. I think this is not the time to get over emotional on this. I am a bit surprised that Pang Da, Youngman and Lofeld were not anticipating this. A change of control clause should be reviewed carefully before agreeing a transfer like this. Victor Muller was anticipating this and stated that explicitly when interviewed by Autoweek.nl. I think the original deal whereby the Chinese would be partners would probably not trigger a reaction like this from GM. Question how NDRC would react? To be continued….

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