We all knew that the Saab deal was done, in principle, but all of the final details were still being hammered out. A big sticking point was the fact that Saab’s new owner, NEVS, wanted the rights to use the “Saab” name, but needed approval from Saab AB.
As expected, that is now all in the past, as NEVS and Saab AB have reached an agreement to allow NEVS licensed usage of the famed name. However, NEVS was not able to procure a license to use the half-lion, half-bird Griffin emblem that Saab was also famous for. This means all new Saab vehicles will either have a new emblem or just a decal that reads “Saab.”
A strange development in this that has almost fallen through the cracks is the fact that NEVS has also secured the intellectual property rights to the aborted Phoenix platform. The odd thing about that is that Youngman just entered a deal with Spyker to manufacture a car based on the Phoenix platform, which Youngman purchased the license to use back when Saab first went under. This means that there may be two cars running around in China bearing almost identical styles, but different names and completely different drivetrains. Strange...
What would be even more odd in this dysfunctional triangle would be if NEVS contracts Spyker and Youngman to manufacture the Phoenix to attempt to save a little production cost. That’s highly unlikely of a situation, as NEVS also secured all of Saab’s tools and its extremely high-tech Trollhattan plant and testing labs.
Get your popcorn ready for this one, we smell a lawsuit coming up at some point...
Click past the jump to read NEVS’s press release.
gallery: Saab PhoeniX concept
National Electric Vehicle Sweden AB
National Electric Vehicle Sweden AB (NEVS) has finalized its acquisition of the main assets of Saab Automobile AB, Saab Automobile Powertrain AB and Saab Automobile Tools AB, effective August 31, 2012. The prerequisites for implementing the NEVS business plan are now in place. The acquisition includes IP rights for the Saab 9-3, IP rights for the Phoenix platform, tools, the manufacturing plant, and test and laboratory facilities. The acquisition also comprises all outstanding shares in the property company which owned the Saab facilities in Trollhättan, Sweden.
NEVS has signed a licensing agreement with Saab AB regarding the rights to use the Saab brand name for its future vehicles. The vehicle manufacturing company is named National Electric Vehicle Sweden AB, “NEVS”. The vehicles and related products and services will be named SAAB. The present logotype will not be used.
Recruitment to the management team and key positions is in progress. As of today, about 75 people have received employment offers.
NEVS is wholly owned by National Modern Energy Holdings Ltd., whose founder and principal owner is Kai Johan Jiang.
NEVS is an international consortium formed by Swedish and Chinese stakeholders. Based on existing resources and with the addition of Japanese leading edge technology, the company is establishing a new venture in Trollhättan, solely dedicated to development and manufacturing of electric vehicles (EVs). NEVS aims to become a leading manufacturer of electric vehicles.
Kai Johan Jiang, founder and main owner of National Modern Energy Holdings Ltd, the majority shareholder of NEVS:
“China is investing heavily in developing the EV market, which is a key driver for the ongoing technology shift to reduce dependence on fossil fuels. The Chinese can increasingly afford cars; however, the global oil supply would not suffice if they all buy petroleum-fueled vehicles. Chinese customers demand a premium electric vehicle, which we will be able to offer by acquiring Saab Automobile in Trollhättan. Engineering and development of our first electric vehicle has been underway for an extended period in China and Japan, and now, with the manufacturing facilities in our possession, we are able to continue development work on site at Trollhättan.”
Karl-Erling Trogen, Chairman, National Electric Vehicle Sweden AB:
“I am delighted that we can build on Saab Automobile’s skills in vehicle design and production to start a new future-oriented venture in Trollhättan, where world class manufacturing facilities are available. We will match Swedish automobile design and manufacturing experience with Japanese EV technology and a strong presence in China. Electric vehicles powered by clean electricity are the future, and the electric car of the future will be produced in Trollhättan.”
“The efforts to implement our business plan can now be multiplied, focused on the development of a world-class electric vehicle in Trollhättan. In approximately 18 months, we plan to introduce our first electric vehicle based on Saab 9-3 technologies and a new technology electric powertrain.”