What the Deal With Hawtai Means for Saab *UPDATED*

First, as Victor texted from his cell phone from China, “This is it!”

And as our own commenter Bravada essentially said, “It’s time to Haw-tai!”

Basically the deal has two arms.

  • It gives Saab a very strong alliance in the Chinese market, not only to sell their cars in a vast dealer network, but also as a major opening for possible technology sharing and partnerships. This should help defray future development costs, especially for things like diesel engines which Hawtai has proven to be quite good at, and RedJ points out should give Saab access to the VM V6 diesel engine family again. In fact, at least a dozen manufacturers in China were vying to tie up with Saab, but they chose Hawtai because of their partnership with Italian VM Motori and their new advanced diesel engine plant.
  • It allows Saab a lifeline to continue operating with mid-term financing subject to approval from the Chinese government, EIB and Swedish NDO.

UPDATES

  • Many have noted in comments that the NG 9-3 will be built in China at a Hawtai factory exclusively for Chinese production. This was confirmed to several reporters at the press conference. “Production in China is for China, production in Trollhättan is for the rest of the world,” said Muller. “We believe we will sell more Saabs and if they are to be exported from Sweden, we will need more employees in Trollhättan,” he went on.
  • Muller expects the first payment to go through within the next 10 days, the rest of the €150 million will need to be approved by the Chinese government, EIB, and Swedish NDO and take 6-12 weeks. Any deal over $100 million US needs to be approved by the Chinese government, and China Car Times believes the deal should go through. According to Unni Jerndal, communications director at the National Debt Office, it has not received an application for ownership assessment yet, but as soon as it comes in they will try to work as quickly as they can. Fortunately the Gemini loan gives them a little breathing room.
  • According to Lars Carlstrom, Antonov was heavily involved in Saab’s deal though he hasn’t received approval to be part of Saab by the EIB just yet. “We have been eyeing Hawtai for a while and know about their activities. What we have learned is very, very positive,” he told just-auto.com.
  • The Spyker (soon to be Swedish Automobile) board will go from 3 seats to 4, adding a spot for Hawtai at the table.
  • By having the Chinese as part owners (up to 29.9%), that means they have a vested interest in Saab’s success, not just their own. This means they should be much more willing to develop technology on Saab’s behalf. When Saab makes money, they do too– this can’t be overlooked, and is one of the hidden benefits of the deal.
  • Also noted in comments by Niklas from an SvD interview, Victor Muller says that the current contract does not allow Hawtai to use Saab technology in their cars, but they are open to that possibility in the future. This means more cash for Saab, in essence this extends their potential lifeline even further.

Having a partner in the worlds largest auto market can’t be undersold, Saab needs a Chinese partner if they want to thrive, and they need to establish a foothold ASAP. Hopefully this allows them to revise their business plan in the medium term (Victor Muller says this means a year) to reduce pressure on other markets to produce higher sales numbers.

Also, Hawtai is actually quite good at a few things. For such a young company (only a decade old), they’ve invested heavily in clean diesel technology and worked with partners like ZF on engine gearboxes. While many have noted they have a history of less than desirable practices in their design department, they have invested heavily in R&D. According to China Car Times, Hawtai is owned by a very powerful parent group (the aptly named Hawtai Group) that had the foresight to envision the Chinese auto industry as one of the major growth areas in the world economy. So far they’ve bet right, if you ask me. The Hawtai Group has a net worth of 13.6 billion RMB (€1.41 billion) and is classified as one of China’s top 500 companies. So far their main industries include paper making, chemicals, forestry, supplying electricity and heating, and also international logistics.

On the second part, or the ownership stake, let’s break it down. As a part of the €150 million transaction, Hawtai will invest €120 million for up to a maximum of a 29.9 percent equity stake in Spyker on a fully diluted basis. In other words, they’re paying 4 times as much as Vladimir Antonov is for the same amount of the company. But that’s not the whole story, as Vladimir appears to be leveraged from several other angles through Gemini Fund, and his agreement to purchase and leaseback Saab property. With Hawtai, the deal makes much more sense in this more concrete initial investment. Like we mentioned before this deal shook out, we didn’t expect that any Chinese company would be able to acquire more than 29.9% of Saab, lest they be required to submit an offer to buy the remaining shares per Dutch law.

The remaining €30 million will be in the form of a convertible loan agreement in the amount of €30 million with a 6 month maturity, an interest rate of 7% per annum and a conversion price of €4.88 per share. This deal must be approved by certain Chinese governmental agencies, the EIB and the Swedish National Debt Office. As part of the transaction, Tenaci Capital will convert €42 million of its current loan to Spyker into share capital in Spyker at EUR 4.88 per share, which also means Victor on paper is essentially selling a huge portion of his interest in Spyker to the Chinese.

So what does the resultant ownership picture look like? Well it’s not exactly as simple as carving it up into 3 little pieces, but that’s nearly what we have. Vladimir Antonov will own 29.9% of the shares of the company, Hawtai will own up to 29.9% (if the 24.6 million shares work out to that number, but it won’t exceed that amount), and the 40% left over is split between the rest of the shareholders, of which there are a number that we’ll delve into in longer form later. The importance of this announcement is that Saab now has a strong Asian partner that will bring a lot to the table, not the least of which is a lifeline.

Bravada from GMI
Member
5 years 4 months ago

I didn’t quite say that, but being quoted alongside Victor Muller is an honour enough to accept any quote attributed to myself 🙂

till72
Member
5 years 4 months ago

It sounds very interesting. Not only the money they get but maybe also the opportunity for Saab to bring knowledge into the development of gearboxes and diesel engines and design them to their demands. Add the entry point to the chinese market and we can be quite proud of the management team who got that partnership done.

Troels, Denmark
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Thank You Jeff for the more detailed information! 🙂
I do appreciate it very much.
It is nice to see a future for Saab again and I feel confident that they will now do the right priorities in the difficult act of balance between marketing, producing, liquidity and investment/development.
I really hope that this will mean that the new 9-3 with its innovative traction-technology will nor be delayed (much) !

NLSWEDE
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Being in spare parts business i hope this will gain our business as well.

BoeBoe
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Tenaci Capital will convert €42 million of its current loan to Spyker into share capital in Spyker at EUR 4.88 per share, which also means Victor on paper is essentially selling a huge portion of his interest in Spyker to the Chinese.

This means that VM will BUY shares! He wil have 8.606.557 new shares.

ivo 71
Member
5 years 4 months ago
Boe: not buy. He will, after the conversion, hold 42 mio euro worth of shares so Saab won’t have to pay the interest on that amount. If he holds on to them then that’s a much bigger risk for him personally, going from fixed yield to diluted pie-in-the-sky maybetype of yield. But he will probably sell those to the Chinese as part of the deal since these are existing shares and selling them instead of issuing new ones will reduce the dilution of the individual share value. I wonder how the current existing shareholders (Trenton International Ltd., Gemini, Mubadala) feel… Read more »
BoeBoe
Member
5 years 4 months ago
Do you know how a convertible loan works??? I guess not! Spyker will isssue 8,6 million new shares to Tenaci Capital. And my guess is that Tenaci will hold on to them because they get them at a price of 4,88 per share (the stockprice at the moment is almost 5 euro). If Victor Muller wants to keep his share of almost 30% in Spyker he will keep onto these new shares. A lot of new shares will be issued in the coming months and if he doesn’t get some extra shares his share will dilute a lot. He will… Read more »
BoeBoe
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Trenton = Brendon O’Toole = CPP = Vladimir Antonov
Gemini = Convers = Vladimir Antonov

ivo 71
Member
5 years 4 months ago
Boe: I thought I did know how it works. And I disagree with your assessment of what will happen because I think VM will convert and sell to the Chinese at a pre-fixed share price before major dilution occurs by large-scale new issues. He has to do that to restore his private capital equity which now largely consists of a loan to an hitherto ailing company. This is his chance to make a buck and keep it. But this is not the podium for such discussions so I propose that we drop it. CPP/O’Toole = Dorwind, not Trenton = (probably… Read more »
mike saunders
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Gemini = Convers/VA

It’s an end-run around direct ownership

ivo 71
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Well, Mike, it doesn’t really matter all that much how much you own, now does it? It does, however, matter a lot more how much you control. Even if VA isn’t the direct owner of the Gemini hedge fund, he presumably can exert full control over it. But those client intake contact locations in London, Moscow and the Baltic countries are a bit of a giveaway, I’ll grant you dat 😉 .

Ivo

ivo 71
Member
5 years 4 months ago

sequel: but I couldn’t find anything on publicly accessible sources about that Trenton International thing, except for a Florida real estate corporation. Which probably isn’t the one. Bummer…

Ivo

GerritN
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Like I said before; I wouldn’t be surprised if the shit hits the fan at the Amsterdam stock exchange. They’ve been on VM’s case for a long time already (or rather the Dutch share holders association) and the way that shares, loans and ownership is moving around is a bit shady.
Not that I really care. For instance, without the Tenaci construction of last year Saab would be dead now. Now again it is survival of Saab as a car manufacturer that is important, as long as the Saab spirit survives that’s fine with me.

ivo 71
Member
5 years 4 months ago

VM was probably going to move Spyker/Saab to the Stockholm exchange anyway so let the VEB do their best. Or worst.

Ivo

goose
Member
5 years 4 months ago

According to Dow Jones:

VM confirmed that the 9-3NG will be made in China as of 2012.

Interesting, does that mean: ALL 9-3NG’s?

Troels, Denmark
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Hopefully not.

900 classic cab
Guest
5 years 4 months ago

+1

JH
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Of course not.

Tim
Member
5 years 4 months ago

I guess they will produce NG 9-3’s for the local market and maybe the rest of Southeast Asia.

RS
Member
5 years 4 months ago

I was going to say the same thing.
VM knows the importance of ‘Swedish’ 9-3’s for the Europen/NA customers.

Troels, Denmark
Member
5 years 4 months ago

I believe you are right.
I also hop that the new technology from Saab will flow to Hawtai a little delayed. So Saab will use it first – or maybe that Saab sells some innovations to Hawtai and keep some for themselves…
Not that I have anything against the Chinese, but because I find it very important for Saab to keep on being special by, at any given time, always have some technical features solely.

Börjesson
Member
5 years 4 months ago

According to Muller, what is built in China stays in China. To me, that’s the most important detail of this deal.
DI.se

GerritN
Member
5 years 4 months ago

+1000!

P.H
Member
5 years 4 months ago

So…tell me about the 9-4x and the possibility of a diesel now?

Patrik B
Member
5 years 4 months ago

The 9-4X is built by GM, with GM parts, in a GM factory in Mexico. So my guess is that it will be very tricky and expensive to introduce a new low volume engine in that factory.

So unless the 9-4X becomes a huge hit and Saab don’t know what to do with all the money I say that you would have to wait until the next generation of the 9-4X.

Bravada from GMI
Member
5 years 4 months ago

The 2.8 V6 is a low volume engine already. I believe the introduction might actually be easier than one might think. There was significant engineering work done to accomodate the original VM V6 diesel in the Theta Epsilon.

Daniel B
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Hopefully the Diesel V6 might be able to become optional in Europe. Like Expressen wrote, it would be a shame that a possible success of the 9-4X saleswise in Europe never came due to the lack of diesel.
I definately see myself interested in one if there is diesel as an option in 2012.

/Daniel

saabonaut
Member
5 years 4 months ago

I just hope we’ll not get again such a disastrous and fault-prone V6-3L Diesel engine like in the 9-5 some years ago.

GerritN
Member
5 years 4 months ago

At a certain point the 9-4x production (or rather its successor) will move to Trollhattan. I think that’s the moment a diesel version will be introduced.
The 9-4x will keep on being produced in Mexico because it is meant for the US market and has a much bigger profit margin when produced in North America. There is no significant interest in diesel engines in the US, so I don’t expect a dieseled 9-4x.

JH
Member
5 years 4 months ago

I believe that Hawtai intends to sell cars in Europe too, and then I think it is likely that they will buy spare parts distribution services from Saab Automobile Parts AB in Nyköping. Those facilities are world-class and not fully utilized and Saab has said that they intend to sell distribution services to third-parties. Now when they are partnering with Hawtai it seems likely that their spare parts for Europe could be distrubuted by Saab. Another win-win situation! 😀

ivo 71
Member
5 years 4 months ago
And they will really need those services if Hawtai cars are technically as advanced as all those other Chinese-made vehicles that couldn’t make it onto the European markets. Should the Hawtais pass the Euro/NCAP testing, that is. Most, if not all, other Chinese cars couldn’t. Remember that Landwind/old Frontera clone? I guess that’s one thing Saab could do for Hawtai: make sure that thair cars pass the Euro/NCAP crashworthiness testing and so can be considered safe enough to be sold in Europe. Whether downscaled Bentley-lookalike sedans with an 1.8 litre gasoline engine, BMW 5-series headlamps and a mega-incar entertainment and… Read more »
zippy
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Im sure Saab’s could be built in China for local consumption. It makes sense really.

Having said that I still dont think E150million isnt going to solve the problems at hand in the long term. This is most definitely the last kick at the can and Saab will not survive another situation like it has just gone thru.

Griffin Up!

psmisc
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Having dealt with Chinese investors, it’s amazing the kind of cash they have laying around begging for a piece of any company with decent products. Given Saab’s technical expertise and a foot in the door to China, securing further financing wouldn’t be much of a problem.

Chris_de_Ze
Member
5 years 4 months ago

VERY Nice deal.
Saab gets a good financial boost (which they desperately need) and Hawtai gets access to some advanced technology (which they also desperately need)!
Where the Russians fit into this agreement? Or they were left out?

It would be good if Hawtai cooperate with Saab to develop together a smaller (9-2) car.

They already have an 1.8T/160hp engine available on the cars they produce (I don’t know where it comes from).
Now it’s time to have a 2.0T (from Saab)!
I suspect that their 2.0lt and 2.4lt engines are from Hyundai (their joint venture partner).

So it’s a swedish-dutch-american-chinese-korean-russian partnership! Really international.

Kittciokas
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Where the Russians fit into this agreement? Or they were left out?

I think, that Antonov could use older SAAB tooling to make cheaper cars for Russian market, just not under SAAB badge, and Chinese could use newer SAAB tooling to build their own cars under their badges, while producing newest SAAB’s for local (or maybe Asian-South American) markets. And as for cheap SAAB 9-1 or SAAB 9-2, it could be made in China.

“So it’s a swedish-dutch-american-chinese-korean-russian partnership! Really international.”

You missed Mexican (9-4X), German (ZF Chassis Systems), Italian (Jason Castriota) and Lithuanian (Snoras bank).

Osama Dajani
Member
5 years 4 months ago

You’ve got a good sense of humor:

SAAB is losing it’s Swedish character / Identity, and its independence.

As long as it survives, then, that’s fine.

Troels, Denmark
Member
5 years 4 months ago

As long as the engineering, development, design AND production mainly will stay in Trollhättan, I don´t think one should worry about that. Even through the GM-time Saab has been able to keep an identity and integrity on a level, among “family-cars”, only matched by Alfa Romeo.

Ruben NL
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Anyone seen the interest rate? Expensive money, that will be transferred after approval by 2 governments and, again, the EIB.
I just hope that Saab will get more a more swift co-operation than the last time, when the long waiting was on the EIB.

Tim
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Actually the interest rate isn’t that high. Paying 7 per cent is about average.

Toby K
Member
5 years 4 months ago

@Jeff

” While many have noted they have a history of less than desirable practices in their design department”

What do you mean exactly?

mike saunders
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Their previous cars were ugly poorly executed knock-offs of European and American designs, a practice that has been the pattern of Asian carmakers since the ’60s, and continued with Hyundai and Kia into the 80s and 90s.

First generations of most Asian cars were extremely derivative until the in-house designers evolved their own design vocabulary for specific brands. They did it so well that some Euro and American brands started copying some themes and scale from Acura and Lexus.

Toby K
Member
ivo 71
Member
5 years 4 months ago

They considered but didn’t act. That Geely Roller-lookalike never went into production, Geely restyled it for the 2010 Beijing Car Expo. It now looks like…a Chinese car.

See here: http://www.egmcartech.com/2010/04/13/rolls-royce-can-breathe-easy-geely-ge-gets-restyled-for-2010-beijing/

Ivo

mike saunders
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Good lord, that’s absolutely hideous.

Two or three charges of C4 should take care of it.

Toby K
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Also I wonder how BAIC feels about this-its a wierd dual brand competition set up within the same region-is that really clever or a dilution of Saab? Maybe if you have lots of money you buy from swaeden-less and you buy from Hawtai then finally less and by last year’s model from BAIC. Covering all bases with a few companies i guess…

Osama Dajani
Member
5 years 4 months ago

That’s all about desperate measures to survive. SAAB might be a hopeless case 🙁

ante
Member
5 years 4 months ago

If beamers and mercs can be manufactured by joint ventures with brilliance motors/auto without being diluted i’m sure Saab will be perfectly fine…

Troels, Denmark
Member
5 years 4 months ago

…or some others might be… 😉

Toby K
Member
5 years 4 months ago

True, I guess it’ll be a bit like STEYR building verts at Russelheim I wasn’t even aware until I found out here!

SAAB_Andee
Member
5 years 4 months ago

no saab convert was ever built at russelsheim. converts for ex. were built by valmet in finland or until 2009 by steyr in graz/austria.
and for example steyr in the moment manufactures the mini countryman,the aston rapide,peugeot rcz and until 2010 the bmw x3

Kittciokas
Member
5 years 4 months ago

SWEDEN: Antonov “heavily involved” in Saab Hawtai deal
http://www.just-auto.com/news/antonov-heavily-involved-in-saab-hawtai-deal_id110712.aspx

gryphon95
Member
5 years 4 months ago

With this deal, SAAB today is a little less Swedish. Will Hawtai run SAAB into the ground like GM? I don’t think I can stand to watch that again. (Remember that GM upped its investment in SAAB over the years.)

ante
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Less Swedish than yesterday?

ivo 71
Member
5 years 4 months ago

I’m sorry to remind you but Saab hasn’t been Swedish-owned since Spyker took over. But it is not going to be Chinese, either, since Hawtai isn’t going to acquire a controlling interest in the company and so won’t be able to run Saab into the ground.

Ivo

gryphon95
Member
5 years 4 months ago
@ivo 71, ante, Once Spyker realizes the cost savings of manufacturing in China vs. Northern Europe, does anyone here think that SAABs will continue to be produced anywhere but China? Even the 9-4x is being built in Mexico. I trusted the Dutch (Spyker) to understand the Swedishness factor. I am not confident that the Hawtai will. This is a very sad day for me. I have two SAABs in my garage: (1) a stunningly gorgeous 2010 SAAB 9-5 Aero (Carbon Gray Metallic, NAV, Tech Package, and 19″ Edge 10-spoke wheels) that I signed up for as soon as the order… Read more »
Khrisdk
Member
5 years 4 months ago
You fiorget the factor of prople like yourself. People that are willing to pay what it costs to have things produced locally. There ar no needs to cut costs if people would are willing to pay the price of a european car. Do you think that Ze Germans will be build in China in the near future? If you assume that Saab will be build in China you also assume that noone are willing to pay the price for the cars that are produced in Sweden. If this is true it is US, WE the consumers that are the reason,… Read more »
P.H
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Bit dramatic. Hawtai aren’t owners. Saabs will always at least be built in Northern Europe.

gryphon95
Member
5 years 4 months ago

How can you say that when Hawtai owns nearly 30 percent? Remember GM started with owning a portion of SAAB before expanding its ownership stake to the whole company.

OddJob
Member
5 years 4 months ago
The Swedishness of Saab will be even deeper rooted now when all the people that develop Saabs are gathered in Trollhättan, instead of being spread out on different GM locations. Then it does not matter if the cars are built in Mexico, China or elsewhere. The ‘Swedishness factor* is defined very clearly already at the early design stages. Look at BMW X5/X3 they are not built in Germany, but in the US and shipped to the rest of the world as ‘German cars’. The Volvo XC 60 is not built in Sweden but in Belgium. Most Japanese cars sold in… Read more »
SAAB_Andee
Member
5 years 4 months ago

a stake of 29.9 % of a company isn´t the same as owning the company. so hawtai isn´t running the company …

(for historians – Gm owned 100% of saab 🙂 )

gryphon95
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Also for historians – GM eventually owned 100 percent of SAAB after upping its initial ownership stake. GM started off being viewed as SAAB’s savior, and we all know how that worked out. “Enemies often appear as angels.”

Quijote
Member
5 years 4 months ago

I’m a little confused about distribution. Would only Chinese built Saab 9-3s be available for the Chinese market? What about Swedish 9-5s, 9-4x, and possibly 9-2?

Additionally, will Saab have their own showrooms, or will they share floor space at Hawtai dealerships?

SaabKen
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Time to Wang Chung, folks !!

MrTinkertrain
Member
5 years 4 months ago
I can not really understand the negative comments here. You have to be very romantic if you think that a small company like Saab can survive without that solution. Look at Volvo, they have been eaten by Geely, 100%. And they are looking for more employees, more capacities, they showed us a new concept car which might be the rival of the german flagships. We do not know even what is gonna happen and we are crying? What the hell is this? Nowadays I would buy anything with “made in china” tag than “made in the USA” … and last… Read more »
Red J
Member
5 years 4 months ago

People,
the main reason everyone is building their cars in China are the import taxes, it is almost prohibitive to import a mid-size car to China.

Saab was going to build in China for the Chinese market as they wrote the MOU with CATC, and they are going to do the same now.

Furthermore as a foreign company you have to find a partner if you want to run a business in China.

And exactly this is what everyone is doing.

xlx
Member
5 years 4 months ago

what about exporting from China ? Will be there a quality difference between a chinese 9-3 and a swedish 9-3 ? If not, than they have to have a pricing policy which keeps away customers in countries around China to buy one in China and import it home. Does it mean lowering prices around China and probably somewhere else as well ? I’ve seen this several times in other industries, so why not in car industry …

Red J
Member
5 years 4 months ago

How many LWB A6 or 5-series you see outside of China?

Why should it be different for SAAB.

JoachimD
Member
5 years 4 months ago
Great news! Hopefully the swedish journalists can cut SAAB some slack for the time being and perhaps buy some new SAABs! It looks promising and despite what many people think of Victor Muller – he has saved SAAB twice now! He is not a manager (a very poor one he himself confirms) but the PR guy. Do you think JAJ will delay his retirement a little with this news? Probably not, unfortunately. SAAB get a scandinavian (or half scandinavian) CEO replacement for JAJ to calm the Swedish nationalistic feelings. Also I think for big emergent markets like China, Brazil and… Read more »
Lars S
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Hello all!
I’m away on education all week and have unfortunately killed my laptop. Anyway, I managed to get a hold of a computer and felt that I just had to post a comment after what’s happened even though I probably haven’t got anything to add to what’s already been said. Please forgive me for that. I agree with everyone saying that this is great news. Now Saab can concentrate on what they’re best on – manufacturing and developing stunning cars!

Francisco
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Ok.I’m very happy about this but I DONT WANT ANY CHINESE DIESEL ENGINE IN MY NEW 9-3

Sorry…

psmisc
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Italian diesel engines. Hawtai has a partnership with VM Motori.

Peter, Sweden
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Fransisco, VM Motori-engines are italian.

Francisco
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Peter,

Vem Motori is owned by Fiat 50% and GM another 50%????

Red J
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Francisco,
you seem to be new here.
I think 99% of the people here know that VMM is an Italian company that was owned by GM and Penske, and a couple of months ago Fiat bought the 50% stake from Penske.
Fiat is now using the VMM V6 Diesel on the Chryler SUV (whatever its name is).

So please, enlighten me and tell me what you mean with your comment!!!!!!

gryphon95
Member
5 years 4 months ago

I’m sorry to any who didn’t like my comments about concerns with Hawtai’s ownership stake in SAAB. I’ll STFU from here on out. I realize that there are many fans and folks in Trollhättan who are jubilant, and I don’t want to detract from their joy. Regardless of my personal views about this latest development, I am hoping that SAAB grows stronger and stronger every day.

Engineer
Member
5 years 4 months ago
Gryphon, I do understand your point of view. However, I don’t really agree in all aspects of it. As the deal looks like now (even though I’m an insider I don’t know so much more than you do) it is a give and take operation. Fine. It doesn’t bother me the least if we can make Hawtai cars be really good in their segment as long as we can create great SAAB’s which are SAAB-engineered and, for the most part, built in Trollhattan. If we can build SAABs for, say China, in China with a quality that is SAAB, I… Read more »
quickening
Member
5 years 4 months ago
Wow. SU might need to do a case study of automakers in the Chinese market so people get the idea that this is the NORM with automakers. The Chinese government imposes insane import taxes on vehicles. And they require foreign car companies to partner with domestic companies if there is going to be local Chinese production. Which of course everyone does in order to avoid the import taxes. VW has a joint venture with SAIC. GM has a joint venture with SAIC also (Shanghai GM). Pretty much every major auotmaker has a partnership or joint venture with a domestic Chinese… Read more »
Victor Siwicki
Member
5 years 4 months ago

A little offrelated topic,

Does anyone know , or can give me any phone number to a SAAB dealer that knows when the new 9-5 SC can be delivered in Sweden.

My dad must order a car in 2-3 weeks. But since our local dealer cant give us any date etc, he wont be able to order it.

And also the 9-4x if possible.

cheers

Tim? ANA?

OddJob
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Just sign up on the order book today, the sooner you do it the sooner you’ll get delivery. As you probably may realise nobody can tell you today exactly when deliveries take place. It depends on where you live, what specification you order etc…etc.. Production of the SC starts second week in August and first cars are at the Swedish dealer launch in the beginning of September. The 9-4X about a month later.

JasonPowell
Member
5 years 4 months ago
Antonov was heavily involved in Saab’s deal though he hasn’t received approval to be part of Saab by the EIB just yet. I don’t think enough can be said about this man. He isn’t even in on paper and he’s busting his ass to get things done. The guy gets slaughtered by Saab fans saying they don’t trust him or his intentions, yet he is one of the guys getting it done. I know that the survival of Saab will bring him a lot of monetary gain, but with all the crap he’s had to go through to get it,… Read more »
turbo_black
Member
5 years 4 months ago
Sorry, you can spin this how every you want, but the fact remains, that the business plan was supposed to be fully funded. It was not. The 9-5 was supposed to be great… it is so-so, at least how priced and equipped in the USA. And Saab being owned by Chinese means that I will never, ever buy another Saab, just like I will not buy a Volvo. I love Saab, loved the cars, love the town. This company is no longer Saab. The cars are no longer special. Being owned by Chinese will not help. The concept at Geneva… Read more »
Engineer
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Thanks, but your first statement is wrong. You just think you have the facts, but you don’t. Few do.

Me, my SAAB collegues, SU and many others are SAAB. Partly owned, funded by Chinese, Swedes, Dutch or Penguins – doesn’t matter…

SAAB_Andee
Member
5 years 4 months ago

would be cool owned by penguins …

@turbo black come on and be serious 29.9% isn´t owned by chinese.
i don´t wanna know for example how much american stock listed companys have chinese partly owners…..

OddJob
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Sorry to say but you are not right at one point. Please don’t give up, this is going to be great. 29.9% means no influence as compared to 100% gm dictatorship. Saab is independent and will remain so. We’ve all been under great emotional pressure for a long time but this is really going to work out well.

MarkoA
Member
5 years 4 months ago

The cars are no longer special.

You got to be kidding, right? So, everything they´ve done (RD too) turned to crap just like that?

This is the new beginning. I see 9-2, Sonett etc on the future lineup. And they will be more special we´ve ever seen. VM said so and I have no reason to doubt that. Phoenix + eAAM + IQon + BMW Engine and who knows what..? The future of Saab starts today. And I´m really excited about it now.

Audun
Member
5 years 4 months ago

I look forward to se the results. 🙂

Niklas G
Member
5 years 4 months ago
Sorry if this is posted here before, but anyway, here’s a prettified Google-trans of some quotes from this SVT interview with Muller, basically saying that Saab technology stays in Saab cars, and this deal is mainly about selling Saabs in China and Hawtai cars outside China. SVT: Should not also the Chinese Government give green light for the deal to become reality? -Yes, that is true, said Muller. Have you been given the green light? -No, we’ve just signed. Hopefully We have an OK within a few weeks? Are you worried? -I’m always worried, said Muller. Will we see Saab… Read more »
Niklas G
Member
5 years 4 months ago

In the videoclip on that page, the SVT reporter gives a somewhat different message, though, saying that Hawtai wil gett access to some Saab technology although the details are not clear yet.

So I guess we will just have to wait and see exactly what comes out of this. =)

fvh
Guest
5 years 4 months ago

Does General Motors (GM) still own a share of the new SAAB??? I’d almost rather have GM still own SAAB then China….

74StingSaab
Member
5 years 4 months ago

yup

fvh
Guest
5 years 4 months ago

Cool….I like GM……

Niklas G
Member
5 years 4 months ago
So the company that spent years trying to kill SAAB is a better partner better than the company that wants so co-operate with Saab and introducing them on the biggest car market on the planet? C’mon, give Hawtai a chance. I have not heard worse things said about them than some people have said about guys like Muller and Antonov. =) Actually if someone should collect everything bad ever written about these guys, it’s much more than everything bad ever written about Hawtai (but most likely not on par with everything bad ever written about GM). But nonetheless, VM and… Read more »
Niklas G
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Ooops, a smiley disappeared in the first paragraph. I didn’t want it to sound “accusing” against anyone, rather just pointing out that if we somehow could protect Saab from cooperating with anyone with a bad reputation, Saab would already be extinct. =)

Bravada from GMI
Member
5 years 4 months ago
Hey, GM didn’t “spend years trying to kill Saab”. GM came to Saab’s rescue when it was on the brink of collapse from underinvestment and lax operational management, as well as lack of modern expertise in many areas (not necessairly pertaining to vehicle design and engineering). It gave Saab the freshest, arguably best and best-selling lineup ever, it brought it back to profitability (Saab Automobile AB was profitable from 1994, when the NG came on line and became an instant sales hit and 2002, when GM took over the remaining 50% of Saab and had no interest paying taxes in… Read more »
Romac
Member
5 years 4 months ago

+1

Niklas G
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Indeed Saab got a great factory and many other things from GM. I was mainly thinking of the “bad parts” in the last years, Saab not being allowed to do what’s best for Saab, which could be described as slow “strangling” blah blah etc, but indeed GM did good things for Saab to, so I was unnecessariily harsh there (and I really honestly love my 9-5 from the GM years 🙂 ).

Anyway, all of that is history now, and I’m glad that Saab so far has avoided going back to 100 % ownership by some bigger car company. 🙂

sonett71
Member
5 years 4 months ago
When I was talking with people on the time when Saab was saved early 2010, we was talking about what could happen for a Saab success. And the talk was very much about a deal like the company just have signed with HMG. But it was more like I was thinking it could be a deal with BAIC. I think it is not a very big difference and I am sure Victor Muller is doing the very best for Saab, and this time HMG is the winner (of course together with Saab). I think Saab also will have a very… Read more »
OddJob
Member
5 years 4 months ago

Please make a comment of respect!
At the artickle in China Car Times there are a few questionable comments which I think belong to some Saab-critical elements in Sweden. If anyone here feels the deal is positive news I think it’s a good idea to go there and make a poistive comment to pay Hewtai respect for having the good taste to choose Saab as a partner. We owe them that. This is going to be very good and very exciting.

Nissi
Member
5 years 4 months ago
In my opinion Hawtai´´s cash payment to Spyker gives Hawtai a future hold on SAAB´s present owners during these renegotiations. The agreement is however no doubt good for SAAB as a company. It is always better to have a company with money in the bank as de facto “ruling owner” in stead of a company with mostly “debts in stead of assets” as owner. In many comments this deal is treated as an “agreement”, but as I see it, this is only a “letter of intent”, which will be renegotiated, and renegotiated again during coming months. It took almost a… Read more »
Chris_de_Ze
Member
5 years 4 months ago
I am surprised with some guys rejecting the idea of buying a Saab if Saab is being owned by Chinese (which is actually not true since the Chinese share can not control Saab). I don’t know where these guys live but have they ever examined/searched where most of the consumer products they buy every day are manufactured in China? If they do, they will definitely be surprised at the end! Personally I don’t see anything wrong with the Chinese deal. It looks promising and encouraging. It is at least better than having Saab die. Because this is what was going… Read more »
Audun
Member
5 years 4 months ago

I completely agree with you Chris Z.

KaiC
Member
5 years 4 months ago

+ 1.
I want to say that we shouldn`t draw conclusions before the results.This is an other whole new beginning for SAAB.If the deal will be longer enough . SAAB will grow up soon in China even in the world . 29.9% percent of shares of Saab owners Spyker is perfect. I heard SAIC wanted 51 percent of the shares leaded the join venture between SAAB and SAIC to the death. Because SAAB doesn`t want to be a GM factory again. SAAB choses the right way.

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