How the G-Minch stole Saab

Mike Aukerman left the following in comments on Dec 24th 23:59. At the end I have embedded the Christmas Saab ad from a couple of years ago. Enjoy!

Every Swede up in Sweden liked Saab a lot.
But the G-Minch, who lived far west of Sweden, Did NOT!

The G-Minch hated Saab! The whole Saab way!
Now, please don’t ask why. No one can say.
It could be, perhaps, that their shoes were too tight.
It could be their head wasn’t screwed on quite right.
But I think that the most likely reason of all
May have been that their brain was two sizes too small.

But, whatever the reason, their brain or their head,
They stood in the Ren Cen planning for Saab to be dead.

“They’re planning the Phoenix!” they snarled with a sneer.
“Tomorrow is Saab’s time! It’s practically here!”
Then they tapped their G-Minch fingers as the Chinese were arriving.
“We MUST find a way to keep Saab from surviving!”

For, tomorrow, they knew all the Swede women and men
Would wake up bright and early, and build Saabs again.
They’d rush to the factory in southwestern Sweden
The G-Minch couldn’t stand the thought of being beaten.

Then they got an idea! An awful idea! THE G-MINCH GOT A WONDERFUL, AWFUL IDEA!
“I know just what to do!” The G-Minch laughed one Sunday.
“We’ll tell the Chinese “No way, no way,
Will we ever approve your involvement with Saab.
We care less about you. Go find a new job.”

But the Swedes wouldn’t stop; nor would the Chinese
“We’ll find a new way, we don’t care what what you please.”
And they sat at the table, to hammer out a deal.
To try to save Saab; nothing was ever so real.

This story’s not through, or so we are told.
Now we must wait to see what will unfold.
As we celebrate Christmas, about to arrive
Keep crossing your fingers; Saab will survive!

Saab will return. They have no choice.

xelav
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Thank you, well spoken! I am hungry for more news to come.

Moody Saaber
Member
4 years 9 months ago
Little Red Riding Saab Fairy Tales of Charles Perrault Once upon a time in the middle of a thick forest stood a small cottage, the home of a pretty little girl known to everyone as Little Red Riding Saab. One day, her Mummy waved her goodbye at the garden gate, saying: “Grandma is ill. Take her this basket of cakes, but be very careful. Keep to the path through the wood and don’t ever stop. That way, you will come to no harm.” Little Red Riding Saab kissed her mother and ran off. “Don’t worry,” she said, “I’ll run all… Read more »
Tomas Vladik
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Well said.
Lucky new year for SAAB from Czech too !
TomasVladik

AJ Murphy
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Perfect. Nice Job, Mike!
AJM

Tomas Vladik
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Saab is an Majestic car. GM doesn´t undestand.
I know many very good cars, but majestic is only one of them.
TV

saabtec
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Way to go Mike!

MariusGTV
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Well said. Really good sentiment and so apt.

To adopt the sentiment from the movie ‘Miracle on 34th Street’……….’WE BELIEVE!’

Griffin Up! Cuore Sportivo!

Hirsch
Member
4 years 9 months ago

That’s cool and I’m sharing it!

nichell
Guest
4 years 9 months ago

Nice . That was good Rune.
We’ll cross our fingers,
We’ll wait and we’ll wait,
T’ll they bring the good news on how we evaded the Grinch, and we never will do business with the Grinch again.

Torso
Member
4 years 9 months ago

I would really love to have a look on that part of the contract between GM and VM that states: “Any Chinese involvement economically not allowed”…….

rune
Member
4 years 9 months ago
Torso, there are, apparently, various ownership transfer clauses in these contracts. They are in place to let GM have a say in who gets access to their technology. The latest deals made GM uncomfortable, and here we are. Though we have now long passed beyond the extra innings, there is still some hope left. I heard some amazing news just now that gives me new hope. (sorry, it comes from a single source, cannot be verified and I was not allowed to repeat it anyway, but it was such news that my bird flu riddled body almost flew away on… Read more »
lol
Member
4 years 9 months ago

New hope ??…….
More canadian or chinese or….

M.A.
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Thanks Rune. I hope tose amazing news show up in the following days. 🙂

nordican
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Canadian Please….‘: http://youtu.be/mWQf13B8epw
😉

gustaf
Member
4 years 9 months ago

That was very good, thank you! Made my day 🙂

saabyurk
Member
4 years 9 months ago

So beautifully written, thank you. Good though, that you can’t see the tears in my eyes.

Zizou
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Ditto for me!

74StingSaab
Member
4 years 9 months ago

a little humor to pass the time…. nice!

hans h
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Lovely ! 🙂

Nicola
Member
4 years 9 months ago

I got chills down my back.

After a couple years of continuous news, you cannot understand my struggle for one more, I’m uncomfortable with this frozen status of “near to death”…

turbokalle
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Haha! Well written!

GreekSaabDriver
Member
4 years 9 months ago
Here we go again… Let’s go blaming GM for Saab’s troubles. Here’s how I see it: GM invested in Saab without a clear plan for it. True. But then, isn’t that what VM did, as well? Didn’t he basically use Koenigsegg’s plan, when Koenigsegg themselves backed away from it? Did it not occur to anybody that maybe they had a reason for doing so? We might like him better (David against Goliath, and all that), but had GM not invested in Saab, we might have been having this conversation ten years ago, and without the benefit of blogs, world-wide rallies,… Read more »
BMW Rider
Member
4 years 9 months ago

+1

rune
Member
4 years 9 months ago

You must have missed last week’s news then. SWAN put together a plan that consisted of a convertible loan from Youngman. It did not affect the current ownership structure, yet GM pulled the technology licenses from under SWAN’s feet.

As for the post itself, well, I am sorry you did not find it humorous. Hopefully the next one will be more to your taste.

Ode76
Member
4 years 9 months ago

+1

Niklas G
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Thanks for sharing some hope and for not sharing any details before they are confirmed, final and official. 🙂

BMW Rider
Member
4 years 9 months ago
VM knew the full ownership by the Chinese deal wasn’t going work and said as much later on but when it happened he was spewing out “SAAB”s future and future of its employees is now secure…” I admire his tenacity but really it was just more Blah blah blah. What a horrible carnival sideshow the whole thing turned into since early this summer. GM might not be the good guys in all this and I think they should have played a much more active role in helping find a way forward for SAAB knowing the depth of the situation but… Read more »
rune
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Yes, VM said early on that GM would never accept the 100% deal, but there were plenty of people (even here) who pushed him on.

After the deal was completed, what would you have liked him to say? “We now have the 100% deal in place, I’m sure it won’t work, we are all going to die”? I can’t recall having heard a company’s owner or CEO talk down their own business.

Ode76
Member
4 years 9 months ago

and more +1

aerostar
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Just for the record. GM has an obligation to pay those warranties. This is no “Goodwill” gesture by GM. If it was they would have paid them all. GM wouldn’t know how to look-up the term “goodwill” in the dictionary never mind understand it.

Dreadnought
Member
4 years 9 months ago

I can’t believe peofple are willing to let GM off the hook for this mess.

GM scotched any deals that could have saved Saab, and the warranties of those who bought SWAN manufactured SAAB cars.

What exit plans could SWAN have made? They are bankrupt, in hundreds of millions of EUROs debt-they tried to secure funding, which among other things would have covered those warranties-and all deals were nixed by GM.

As far as GM being nice guys to cover the warranties of the cars manufactured, they were LEGALLY MANDATED to do so:

http://blogs.insideline.com/straightline/2011/12/general-motors-to-honor-some-saab-warrantiesbecause-they-have-to.html

General Motors To Honor Some Saab Warranties…Because They Have to

900_S
Member
4 years 9 months ago
Haha, very cute! 🙂 I don’t necessarily see GM as the evil enemy, but I thought what they did at the end was a little… beyond protecting their technology. More like preventing potential competition. Did it look like Victor put all his eggs in one basket with the Chinese? Definitely. I don’t know why and anything I say on the subject is just speculation. Maybe they were the most interested and willing to invest the most–I don’t know. It seemed like GM had a lot of sway over the deal–and it could be argued that Victor caused the whole situation… Read more »
900_S
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Also, as far as the poem goes–it’s just entertainment. Sure, one could say it fans the anti-GM flames, which is the popular crowd here, and might be a little unfair to those who disagree, but… I guess that’s up to the SU crew to decide. Personally, I don’t see it as inflammatory… but I’m more on the anti-GM side, so I’m biased.

clean_kirill
Member
4 years 9 months ago
As long as nobody reads forum I put in here: http://www.zr.ru/a/394926/ Translated by Google: The Chinese company, Zhejiang Youngman Lotus Automobile will continue to implement plans to assemble cars with technologies Saab, despite the bankruptcy of the Swedish company . As told Automotive News China edition of the Chinese company’s Rachel Pan, Youngman got a promising platform for Phoenix, which was developed for the Swedish automakers Saab 9-3 new generation and has been shown on the concept of PhoeniX in 2011 at the Geneva Motor Show. Youngman has founded a new company in Sweden which will promising developments in the… Read more »
rdantest
Member
4 years 9 months ago

I will never buy a GM product again. There should be a permanent world wide boycott of GM among SAAB lovers.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 9 months ago

I traded my Buick today for Kia. I still have my GM Saab and that’s a keeper—-but I’m with you—I can’t see myself ever buying another GM. They are devils.

Troll96
Member
4 years 9 months ago
Just because the situation is dire is no reason to get out the pitchforks re: who’s to blame. In looking back, 1990 GM invested $1.66 billion (in 2010 dollars) for product development and half ownership of Saab. Twenty years later, Spyker got the whole company for only $74 million in borrowed money. VM frequently spoke of how the deal for such an iconic brand was too good to pass up. And it was. One would think that a buyer with a “fully-funded” business plan might have quite a bit of spare cash left over after such a bargain-basement purchase. But… Read more »
Saabissimo
Member
4 years 9 months ago
Troll96 delivers a good summary of the situation here. The fundamental problem was that Spyker was underfunded and over-optimistic from start, but we kind of knew that all along, didn’t we? Then, with the loans that followed it became more and more difficult to combine the requirements of the stakeholders, all with different agendas. VM tried all his best of course, but all these factors made it an impossible task for him since he came into the whole deal underfunded. Yes, GM could have been more lenient in their approval process. But so could other lenders. And to say that… Read more »
Gatelaw
Member
4 years 9 months ago

I seriously doubt that insulting the board or the company will improve the situation for Saab, or contribute to finding a solution for our beloved brand. Otherwise it was an interesting spin on telling the tale of how a selfish giant was looking to its interests when destroying a small legend. But leave out the needless insult…there is nothing unintelligent about GM, just heartless.

Troll96
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Not an insult at all. Just a litany of unfortunate developments.

theSandySaab
Member
4 years 9 months ago
There are many reasons today to buy a certain product, or not. Still, image and perception are extremely important. My personal image and perception of GM are very negative, and without having to motivate it further – I will not purchase ANY GM or related products. First having been bailed out themselves, then being instrumental in letting my favorite car brand bleed dry to a painful death, when there were other alternatives. The blame can be thrown around, but I truly believe Saab’s death could have been avoided. GM might have made a commercial decision, but they will never get… Read more »
theSandySaab
Member
4 years 9 months ago
Oh, and I read that Volvo is being provided with and in part develops the Ford technology that now is engrained in every Volvo model, even the very latest ones, not yet released. If Ford can do this, why could not GM??? While my personal Ford ownership experience (2002 Ford Explorer XLT) was abysmal (by far the worst car I have every owned interms of quality & reliability), I think Ford is commendable for sharing their IP with Geely owned Volvo. There seem to be no (major) issues with IP etc… I think Ford is able to think outside the… Read more »
GerritN
Member
4 years 9 months ago

“If Ford can do this, why could not GM???”

I think you answered your own question already. Ford is car people, GM is bean counters.

skn
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Awesome

Couldn’t be more true

SAAB on!

“we will overcome” this insult too

CSD_ChineseSaabDriver
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Great to see how much real Saab fans love this brand

Smithy
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Ahh – you poster the reindeer video – beautiful! And wow, do I like this tragical yet brilliant poetry!

mnztr
Member
4 years 9 months ago

I can’t say I would never buy a GM product, but I am pretty certain they are unlikely to build something I want. Who knows what I will go to is SAABs become unviable, maybe a BMW i3 with range extender.

theSandySaab
Member
4 years 9 months ago

…my personal new dream-car (at the moment) is an Idua S5 (still way to expensive for me).
Also, for e-propulsion, seen the Tesla model S, awesome…
BUT, now is the time to purchase the Dream Saab, for me a 2008-2012 9-3, either a TtiD SC and/or a nice Vert….
And a low mile TurboX….. (drawling)
I find the 9-3 beautiful in all three versions…

Joe
Member
4 years 9 months ago
Firstly, I would like to begin by saying I am a very avid fan of Saab cars, I have in a period of 11 years has in total no less than 7 Saabs, my current 9-5 aero was due to for a change to MY11 Aero V6. As this was a new car which I was keen on ordering that has not prevailed due to stoppages at Saab. This is the problem with blogs sites, they are run by people who usually have a bias opinion and prefer not to see comments which they deem to be negative. A blog… Read more »
rune
Member
4 years 9 months ago

@Joe,
“VM would have been more than aware when he brought Saab from GM, licenses would not be interchangeable as how he has suggested.”

What has been said is that there were ownership transfer clauses in place that would give GM some control in case someone acquired more than a 19.9% stake in the company.

What was done, at the very end, was to put together a deal that would not trigger those clauses, thus taking GM out of the equation. GM decided to pull the licenses anyway.

900_S
Member
4 years 9 months ago
@Joe You bring up some good points, like how Saab owners find a Saab favorite and hold onto it rather than buying a new one or trading in every few years–but not everyone is able to do this. Also, Victor is definitely subject to criticism like anyone else. I think he made a bet and perhaps assumed too much, and then was surprised when the cards went against him–but let’s not forget Saab was about to share the same fate as Saturn and Pontiac when he purchased the brand. I don’t know how many were interested in acquiring Saturn or… Read more »
jim
Member
4 years 9 months ago
Saab’s recent collapse has been a black eye on GM and deservedly so. They are not a serious car company. They are catching up to other automakers. Essentially GM learned modern automaking from Toyota. More recently, Audi and BMW have influenced both GM styling and interior product development. GM’s peer is Hyundai Kia. GM is third string. Having said that, Saab had potential with GM bones. GM just didn’t have the wherewithal to make Saab continue. GM was coldly rational to determine that Chinese ownership of Saab (which has privileges to GM’s intellectual property) would create an ambiguous legal situation… Read more »
mnztr
Member
4 years 9 months ago

I can understand GMs concern about it’s Chinese business, but surely there were ways to put barriers around it. No exports of GM IP to China or limit of 10K units of 94x and 95 per year until new GM IP free models emerge. Now they have completely lost control of their IP.

maanders
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Right. If Saab only sold a fraction of the cars in the US that GM sells, why would GM assume that Saab would sell more than a fraction of what GM sells in China? Seems like there would have been room for both with the competition factor being minor.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Absolutely. This was about GM not wanting to have the world see a Chinese company do what they couldn’t do in 20 years—-make a profit on Saab. It was an ego thing—they didn’t want to look bad by having their incompetence exposed.

mnztr
Member
4 years 9 months ago

I read a couple of interesting things – 1. Dong Feng is bidding on SAAB assets and one thing that was quite shocking – the liquidation will not proceed until APRIL!!!! OMG.. that is wayyyyyyy to slow. Any truth to this? I fear April is so far away that the core of the company will be completely dissipated by then.

Rufus Rudog
Member
4 years 9 months ago

Saab must return–not just for the great cars but commercials too.

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