Just when we thought that the Saab saga was reaching its closure, a new wrench gets thrown into the mix. When NEVS purchased Saab’s assets a little while ago, we were under the impression that this sale included the rights to the “Saab” name and logo. According to reports coming out now, this is not the case.
Apparently, the sale of Saab only covered the failed Swedish automaker’s physical assets. The truck-building company, Scania, and Saab AB still own the rights to the Logo and the “Saab” name. For NEVS to legally use the name, both Scania and Saab AB will need to sign off on the usage, and the companies are reportedly in talks about how to handle this.
We would assume that Scania has no issues at all and just wants a piece of that Saab resurrection pie. Saab AB, on the other hand, still runs Saab’s line of parts, which was not included in the bankruptcy. Saab AB could benefit by using this opportunity to negotiate their way into new dealerships when NEVS starts rolling out new electric-powered Saabs. Saab AB also has to consider protecting its brand image, and it NEVS completely botches this revival, it will make Saab AB look bad as well.
We’re confident that a deal will be struck between the three companies to allow NEVS the rights to the name and logo, but Saab AB will likely have a heavy hand in how the name is used.
As always, we’ll keep you updated as additional information comes to the surface on this seemingly endless Saab saga.
As Saab closes up its latest chapter, which included bankruptcy and many months or “We’re sold, wait, no we’re not” turmoil, we were left wondering what happened to the 900 (ish) Saabs that got held up at port whenever the failed car company filed for bankruptcy. Well, now that Saab has been liquidated to the point that only the 900 cars remain, we now have an idea what’s going on with them.
According to reports, all 900 cars will be auctioned off to varying companies and exporters. Only 300 of these leftover Saabs will make their way into dealerships and the dealers have the option to either put them up for sale at a 30- to 50-percent discount and sell them or strip them down for parts. Obviously the most profitable game would be to strip them down, but it may take a while to sell off all of the parts. So we may be in for some super-cheap Saabs hitting what remaining Saab dealers there are.
The majority of the leftover Saabs will be auctioned to exporters and rental companies. So, for an American to snag up one of these Saabs he has to either find a dealership close enough that actually wants more stock on its lot or pick one up after the rental car company is done with it – AKA after it has been thrashed to within an inch of its life. Who buys a used rental car anyways?
According to the inventory report, there are 67 company cars, which include a 1960 Quantum IV and a `70 Sonnett III, over 450 9-5s, 400 9-3 sedans, 60 9-3 wagons, 12 9-3 convertibles and 28 9-4X crossovers.
So thus closes another part of the Saab saga. Now we just have to see what NEVS can do with the bankrupt Swedish automaker.
few days ago, we let you know that several sources were reporting that bankrupt Swedish automaker, Saab, was finally sold to Hong Kong-based, Sweden-registered renewable energy company, National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS). This in turn booted Youngman out of the bidding war for the third time, but we had not yet seen any official reports. Well, we now have all something official.
NEVS’ boss, Karl Johan Jiang (interesting mixture of names) announced at a news conference that NEVS indeed won the folded automaker and that NEVS will indeed use the “Saab” name on its cars. NEVS was awarded the Saab factory, its tooling company and the 9-3’s architecture, which is odd, as BAIC purchased the intellectual rights to the 9-3 several months ago. We assume that BAIC got the drivetrain rights and Saab retained the underpinnings and body.
NEVS also let us know that we will not be without a new Saab vehicle on the road for much longer, as NEVS is currently developing an EV car based on the 9-3’s architecture that it was awarded and that car should be released in the next 18 months. Sales will start in China, then eventually move worldwide.
Unfortunately, NEVS’ bid did not include the 9-4x or 9-5 rights, so other than the 9-3, Saab will be starting all over again with brand new models, if it ever gets off of the ground. Given the Saab 9-3’s somewhat sporty nature, we expect to see a higher performance EV made of it. It definitely won’t be a screamer, like the Tesla Model S, but also not as slow as a Nissan Leaf.
There should be loads more information coming down the pike in the next 18 months, and we will update you as often as we can. Until then, congratulations to NEVS and the “Saab” name for making it through this long saga.
Back in 2009, we reported that little-known Chinese car manufacturer Beijing Automotive Industry Holdings Co. Ltd., which fortunately goes by the acronym BAIC, officially purchased the intellectual rights to the Saab 9-3 and 9-5. It was a rather odd transaction, to say the least, as few people knew what BAIC’s plans were with these rights.
Well, BAIC has officially come forward to let us all know the plan. There are two BAIC cars making their debuts at the Beijing Auto Show, which opens to the press on April 23rd and the general public on the 27th, one of which we know is based on the Saab 9-3.
The Saab 9-3-based model is dubbed the C70, but that is about where our knowledge stops, as BAIC has kept a pretty tight lid on the happenings on at their office. We can speculate that the C70 will feature a Saab engine, likely the 210-horsepower 2.0-liter used in the final 9-3.
The larger BAIC C80K is the most likely home for the high-output Saab V-6 from the defunct 9-5. This model has a little more info available, as BAIC teased us with a few images of the upcoming vehicle. From what we can tell from its outside, this vehicle appears to be designed to compete with the likes of BMW, Mercedes, and maybe even Bentley, but that 3.0-liter V-6 wouldn’t hold a candle to those makes. This makes it a possibility that the C80K’s engine is an in-house build.
Really cool, yet potentially dangerous, features on the C80K are the B-pillar-less suicide doors. This looks really cool, by giving one wide open entry with both doors open, but could potentially weaken the structural integrity significantly. We also know that the C80k will measure in at 205 inches long and 75 inches wide.
That’s about all we know right now about these new BAIC models, except that they will only be available in China. We will pass along more details as they come along.
There’s no doubt that Saab as a company has been running on fumes for the past couple of years, teetering that bankruptcy line more than any other automaker has in recent time.
But if there’s one silver lining to the malaise the company is embroiled in, it’s that some of their cars are still being represented in the world of auto racing. One in particular is Flash Engineering, which recently unveiled their new Saab 9-3 TTA race car that’s set to compete in the Swedish Racing Elite League this year.
The 9-3-turned race car comes with a dynamic wide body kit to go with a vented hood, a new rear diffuser, and a larger rear spoiler, making it primed and ready for some hardcore racing action.
According to Jan Nilsson, Flash Engineering’s Managing Director, the motivation to enter the Swedish Racing Elite series with a Saab 9-3 was to finally see how it stacks up against its local rival, Volvo, out on the track. “I have longed for 40 years to see the fight between Saab and Volvo on the race tracks," he said. "It becomes reality this summer and my biggest dream is to get all Saab fans to the TTA races to cheer us on.”
While we think that it’s a race that will get turn some heads, we think it’s a little more of a big deal to see a Saab vehicle compete in a racing environment despite the company’s well-chronicled financial struggles. Here’s to hoping for a good showing from the guys over at Flash Motorsport.
Updated 03/23/2012: Flash Engineering has unveiled today a first video for their Saab 9-3 TTA Race Car featuring a first test session. The test was a first run, at the Alés track in France, where the front was not completed, the final car is going to look different.
Saab may be on the short stick – again - as far as their future is concerned, but some of their models still find a way to make the news and try to move the spotlight away from their tumultuous future into something a little more optimistic.
In this case, the question has to be posed: who knew that you could take a Saab 9-3, strip it down to its bare essentials, build the whole puzzle back together, and fit in an 8.4-liter V10 engine that comes courtesy of a Dodge Viper SRT10?
You read that whole paragraph right, folks. The word’s ‘Saab’ and ‘SRT’ are coming together for a very revealing customer project. The final model, which is being called the ‘9-3 SRT10 MegaPower’, came from the mind of one Zaccho Pelle, who wanted nothing more than to turn his Saab 9-3 Estate from an otherwise mundane wagon into a Viper SRT10-powered, 600-horsepower piece of automotive madness.
Full details on the Saab 9-3 SRT10 MegaPower after the jump.
Saab’s entry level compact car has received a refresh for the 2012MY, and it also has a new name to go along with it. Now called the 9-3 Griffin for the US version, the hot hatch will be getting some interior and exterior modifications, as well as a couple of new engines.
Starting off with the exterior, the 9-3 Griffin will be receiving new front bumpers and signature Saab ‘ice block’ headlamps to differentiate itself from the earlier versions of the second generations. This is followed by a new metallic trim for the interior, as well as updated leatherette seats and unique storage pockets on the sides of the front seats.
More engine options will also find their way into the 9-3 Griffin, alongside the usual mix of 1.9-liter TTiD twin turbo diesel engines producing either 130, 160, 180hp. These new engines will come in 2.0L petrol flavors with 163hp or 220hp.
Hit the jump to read more about the 2012 Saab 9-3 Griffin.
February 23rd is a very special day for the boys of Saab. A year ago on this day, the Swedish automaker was officially given a new life by Spyker, and the former will be celebrating the first anniversary of Saab’s rebirth as an independent carmaker by releasing a special edition 9-3 Convertible that it’s calling the “Independence Edition”.
Set to be launched at a special party to be held at the company’s Trollhättan plant in Sweden, the 9-3 Independence Day Edition is a model that will be limited to just 366 units – one for each day that has passed since Spyker made its purchase from General Motors. Pass the cheese this direction, please?
Cheesiness aside, the 9-3 Independence Day Edition will come with a number of unique features, including a 2.0-liter Biopower engine that produces 220 horsepower, a bespoke Amber Orange metallic exterior paint finish, a set of 18" alloy wheels decked in a two-tone satin chrome and black finish. Meanwhile, the interior gets beige leather interior seats and a glovebox with orange piping, an orange turbo instrument needle, carbon fiber trim, an orange stitched sports leather steering wheel, carpet mats that come with gray piping, and a couple of other upgrades courtesy of Hirsch Performance.
As soon as the 9-3 Independence Edition finishes celebrating Saab’s one-year “rebirth” anniversary, the car is expected to make an appearance at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show. Can’t say that we’re particularly thrilled about the car. It’s a definite looker, especially that orange piping on the interior seats, but we’re not going to sell our souls in order to get one.
Staying true to the fact that they have become the official supplier for ECU upgrades, aero kits, brakes, exhaust systems, and a few other modifications for Saab models on the US market, Hirsch Performance has unveiled one of the projects they have been working on. The Saab 9-3 sedan by Hirsch Performance has been unveiled at the 2011 Chicago Auto Show featuring some pretty impressive little extras on it interior and exterior.
The specific model revealed at the show received a 30 HP upgrade, but that is only one of the options provided by Hirsch. Crack open a Saab 9-3 with a 2.8 Turbo V6 engine and Hirsch can pump it up to 300hp (up from 276 HP). Other engine setups can get updates from 140hp to 300hp.
The exterior wasn’t left untouched as Hirsch Performance is offering a rear spoiler, a carbon fiber body kit with a front splitter and rear diffuser, a four-piece mesh grille set, and a new set of 19" 6-Twin alloy wheels to give the Saab’s look a bit of spunk.
Depending on how much money the customer is willing to spend, Hirsch Performance can customize your Saab in every which way imaginable.
Hit the jump to check out performance statistics for their tuning packages.
Saab is continuing its efforts to become a self-sustaining company by making plans for the next generation Saab 9-3 and the timing has been set as Saab has announced that the new 9-3 will be making its world debut in 2012, most likely at the Paris Auto Show. The new model will feature a more dramatic exterior style, but it will also get a new electric four-wheel drive system that will improve fuel economy by 10%. This system was developed by engineering specialist American Axle and uses a newly designed multi-link rear suspension and two electric motors.
Jason Castriota, Saab’s new design director, said that the exterior styling has already been decided, with only small details - like headlamps - still needing to be chosen.
The 2012 Saab 9-3 will be offered with a new 200 HP 1.6-liter turbocharged petrol engine used by the Mini Countryman. There will also be a range of new diesel engines, but company sources would not be drawn on the likely source, saying only that “both parties are open to explore further opportunities as part of this relationship in the future”. Previous reports have suggested that the new Saab may include the new 184bhp 1.6-liter, twin-scroll turbo Cooper S engine and the 112bhp 1.6-liter diesel engine used in the Countryman. The new engines will be coupled to an all-new six-speed manual gearbox and a four-wheel drive system.