Dan Neil, formerly of the LA Times and now of the Wall Street Journal, has a nice fat headline claiming The Next Saab 9-3: World Exclusive First Picture!
Now, I can tell you a few things about this.
1) It’s (reportedly) Dan’s own pencil work based on him seeing the famous rendering on Victor Muller’s mobile phone. As such, it’s not “the next Saab 9-3” as Dan wrote in his headline. The sketch on Victor’s mobile phone is his idea for a new smaller Saab, one that would be a Saab 9-2, or 9-1, or 92 or 91 depending on what the naming convention will be at that time.
2) It’s not a world exclusive, either. I described the sketch, which I saw as desktop wallpaper on VM’s laptop, in a post that I wrote from Schipol airport in Amsterdam back in February:
The desktop wallpaper on Victor Muller’s laptop is his sketched idea for a new small Saab. This is the Saab 92 inspired teardrop shaped vehicle that he’s been talking about recently. Think Saab 9-X Air at the front and Saab 92/96 at the rear.
Based on that description, Jeff came up with this rough photoshop, which gelled reasonably well with what I recall seeing.
So, sorry Dan, but it was neither a 9-3 or a world exclusive. But it’s a nice Saab 93 (1950’s generation) you’ve drawn there.
The rest of the article makes for some good reading, summarising a good number of talking points with regard to Saab.
- Manufacturing in Sweden.
- Initial plans for the US
- Partnership with BAIC
- Technology sharing and breaking even
Recommended reading. Just ignore the sketch bit.