Developing a future Saab portfolio

You could see this as a follow-up to the post I did last week about a potential restart based on a 9-3 model alone or you could just see this as a bit of distraction while we are waiting for news to come. Either way is fine for me as this thoughts came out of some good discussions I had recently with members of our team. While we all thought that starting production based on the current 9-3 model would be a first step that could work we were drawing it a bit further asking us what should be next after the next 9-3 is there. I’ll put this into a bit of a fictional story to get you in the right mood for the discussion this piece is looking for…

So let’s imagine it’s early in 2014. The old generation 9-3 did a good job selling 35.000 units the year before after it has been refreshed when Saab was restarted in fall 2012. The next generation of the 9-3 just hit the market after it was presented at the IAA in 2013. For the first time in Saabs history hatch and Combi were released at the same time with a 3-door and convertible variant to debut at the Geneva motor show in March 2014. While that new 9-3 is expected to push up sales compared to the old model it is still pretty clear that it will not be enough to reach the break even point.

While in recent years Saab had tried to fill that gap in sales with the 9-5 and the 9-4x the new management decided to go a different route. They created the 9-1, an entry level Saab to attract new kinds of customers usually served by Audi A1, Fiat 500, Mini as well as those who used to drive a Saab but simpy don’t need a bigger car. The quick development of that model has been possible through a platform partnership with BMW and the help of engineering companies that were founded by former Saab employees during the bankrupcy of Saab. As the 9-1 is due to be released in a big event at the Saab museum in Trollhättan in May those engineering companies are already busy creating the first phoenix-based generation of the 9-5, that is unlike the previous 9-5 more aimed to the European market in terms of size. Rumors already mention a potential 9-4x or a similar vehicle but this is still not confirmed.

Of course that was a nice success story we’d all like to watch. But the main point in this is that I’d really prefer to see a 9-1 before a 9-5. Assuming that the 9-3 may grow a tad to offer enough space for a family of four in wagon configuration a small Saab could create more volume and attract new customers. Add fuel saving drivetrain technology and typical Saab design along with quirky features like the good old fasten seat belt signs – I bet it would sell pretty well.

Once that is archieved and some cashflow is there go for the bigger models to complete the model range. A major problem in 2010 was that the 9-5 was no car to make volumes. A new 9-3 had been a much better base for the restart of Saab. I spoke to many dealers here in Europe about that and most of them agreed. So for any buyer this is a big opportunity and a 9-1 would enlarge it even more.

Those are my thoughts, now it’s your turn…

KaiC
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Beautiful scene 🙂

dcpattie
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Lauch 3 variants from the Phoenix NG 93 right off the bat. I’m talking about a classic 5-door, 3-door convertible and 3-door coupe. Maybe even a 4-door sedan since that’s what the U.S. market likes. Saab could just sell those 3-4 models until they develop something smaller. I think the days of full size executive cars (9-5) are dead unless they find a partner fast.

sam de Hoyos
Member
4 years 8 months ago
As long as we are dreaming……………this has been a dream of mine for over the last decade!! I even wrote several letters to the Saab design team over the last decade about this. Along with the new platforms which we all agree Saab needs to grow, I’m just curious……….how many of you feel the way I do……….. and would love to see a retro 900 turbo Aero that looks, drives and sounds 95% classic with some modern design improvements? Just like the Dodge Challenger or Ford Mustang………all classics in their own right but nothing like the Saab 900 Turbo!!! They… Read more »
davidgmills
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Only this time don’t make it so damn ugly.

sam de Hoyos
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Ugly???? How did you even get on this forum? 😉 Lol Let me guess……. you prefer the VW Scirocco looking 9000? Or the NG 900 that looks like very similar to the old ISUZU Impulse???? Talk about damn UGLY!!!! Well………to each their own. I personally think the original 900 was the best looking car Saab made before GM took over. And the real beauty of the that car was you either loved them……….or hated them because they were so unique looking. That is what makes Saab SAAB! Unfortunately over the last 2 decades GM killed that uniqueness and now, only… Read more »
Alexandros
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Nice thoughts there, Till!

Although I know that you aren’t a prophete, I missed a sentence in your story, like: “…it’s early in 2014 and after two years of ownership, XYZ managed to keep Saab alive and bring it back succesfully to the market.”

Or, is the mantioning of BMW a hint in the future…?

philip
Member
4 years 8 months ago

On Euro manufacturers:
I don’t get why BMW would be interested. Saab offers them no added value.
Volvo, would seem odd.
Fiat / Alfa enormous culture clash.
VW Why? They have Audi, VW, Seat, Skoda and Bentley, SAAB would add very little to them.
Porsche (are they still separate from VW?) Saab would fit well if they wanted a non sports car brand
Renault Noooooo………………
Peugeot Citroen Could make sense, they are good on engines but lack sound sporting design and build quality.
Is there any other major European brand (ignoring GM and Ford Jaguar / LandRover on the basis they aren’t European)?

OliverH
Member
4 years 8 months ago

FIAT knows about the capabilities of Saab. They worked closely on Project TIPO (Saab 9000, Fiat Croma, Lancia Thema, Alfa 164) and with the gift from GM to Fiat with the past “should have been new 95”, the Pixbö Plattform.
Saab could help to get new and better Chryslers.

900 classic cab
Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Great scenario 🙂 I have thoughts between a 9-1 and a 9-2.

900 classic cab
Guest
4 years 8 months ago

mostly thoughts on which one

900 classic cab
Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I mean doubts

meg haviland
Member
4 years 8 months ago

more 9-2 than 9-1 I would do. Fiat not making it’s target #’s as predicted. Sound familiar?
Nice write-up Till.

WD78
Member
4 years 8 months ago

I think the future Saab modell after the new 9-3 should be a car that is profitable. Not a high-volume-seller but more a high-profit-per-car modell. That will make the company more profitable faster. Bigger cars like SUVs are more profitable than smaller cars. I think that is the first key to success.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Lower volume but “hoped for” higher profit per unit has the company bankrupt. They need a higher volume, more affordable line of cars.

WD78
Member
4 years 8 months ago

There is bigger profits on SUV cars. They are priced higher than a ss or sc but does not cost much more to build. To bad that the 9-4X never was properly launched and that Saab never manufactured the 9-4x themselfs.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 8 months ago

I agree with that—-more profit on SUVs. But also, remember that volume means better news for dealers, who do maintenance and repairs. There has to be a balance along the line—-but I do believe there is a need for an entry level Saab (there always has been). Less profit per unit, more units sold—-dealers happy with the service business. Also, keep the higher profit/lower volume cars in the line, but on the higher end.

hogge
Member
4 years 8 months ago

As allways, my thought is:
9-3>Sonett>Everything else

Also, Saab should make a “Turbo X Evolution” based on the current generation 9-3 and take it rallying.

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago
First off, if Saab is to survive off the old 9-3 for the time being, they unfortunately will need some kind of repositioning closer to “kitted out VW” than the more premium brands, though the pricing level is essentially the same (e.g. if you look at loaded Passat and “bare bones” A4 pricing, it’s the same area, but Saab has to forget BMW M3 prices for the time being). So, we are left with a one-car brand, which is not a bad thing per se, if you look at where MINI started out from. Then again, the 9-3 is a… Read more »
Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago
BTW, why the 9-1? Well, because it’s easier to sell a cheaper car than an expensive car, as Saab has learned with the 9-5. Saab is great at making cars functionally better while costing the same. It’s not that great at making super-premium cars with wood veneers and V8s. The expertise in THN could be better used in a 9-1 type of car than a 9-9 six-metre Maybach-replacing limo. Besides, Saab’s major markets are European countries. USA didn’t prove either profitable or majorly successful for Saab – people there want large cars on the cheap, which is contrary to what… Read more »
michael
Member
4 years 8 months ago

+1 on smaller 9-1. It would sell easier and in larger quantities, supporting a healthy turnover, cashflow and larger supplier part orders (which would help to keep parts price down). It should be solid, sporty and better-than-average quality, and also fun- and driver-centered. An outstanding scandinavian design is a must. It should be an emotional choice. Look at Minis – customer forgive them poor reliability for sportiness, design and emotions they cause.

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Umm, not necessairly. MINI is unique, one cannot count on Saab generating such hype. It has to be a great product that one does not have to “forgive” anything. It can be less “emotional” in that it has a more functional design, but it should be absolutely reliable, and very functional. Driver-oriented is a given, in that it is an engaging, comfortable, spirited drive. If anything, Saab could continue to compromise on interior opulence, making this a statement rather than weakness. Actually, just imagine a MINI (same chassis, same engine) as if it was done by Saab – roomy, spacious,… Read more »
JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Saab has always relied on the numbers of the American market. It is a large market so even a small splash equates to large numbers.

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago

If it is at a loss, what’s the point of making that splash? Saab has had GM’s development budget behind them and two tailored-for-US models, and still failed, and even at prices much lower than in most other countries of the world, people still complained Saabs were too expensive.

Perhaps it’s time to move on and look to India, China et al. for that volume?

davidgmills
Member
4 years 8 months ago
They complained that they were too expensive because GM cars on the same platforms cost much less. The LaCrosse is selling like hotcakes in the US. But it costs much less than a 9-5, is associated with a brand that has been around 100 years, and has dealerships all over the country, not just in major markets. Frankly, if the speculation is true that GM wants to kill Saab, (I am not one who thinks that) it should want to kill Saab because a really well marketed 9-5 at the right price point with a great dealer network, would be… Read more »
Wittendorff
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Nice scenario.
personnaly I would prefer to see a smaller SAAB. This would make it possible for many people, as my self, to buy a new SAAB and support the factory, instead of always buying used ones.

900 classic cab
Guest
4 years 8 months ago

+1

i. ant. kal.
Member
4 years 8 months ago

+ 91

same with me

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago
If Saab was wise enough to set up a used car programme, you still could support the factory. Saab was terrible at making the most of the car’s lifetime, this is where they should take leaves out of VW’s and BMW’s books. Every Saab should be tracked throughout its lifetime and re-sold, serviced, supplied with parts, services and accessories by Saab and related parties for as much as possible. Saab could possibly double or treble their sales if they took to the used car market. Few cars live for so long as Saabs do – not necessairly due to reliability… Read more »
900 classic cab
Guest
4 years 8 months ago

very interesting

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Very profitable, actually. That is why I believe that if any of the Saab sales, marketing, product management, fixed revenue etc. folks left, it’s no harm done. They’ve left out money on the table that could have kept Saab afloat.

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

As the enthusiast community has shown, there is a strong market for older Saabs, it would also capitalize on the heritage of the brand. If you recall, a number of years ago Nissan did a similar thing by restoring and reselling Z cars to gain publicity and draw people into the showrooms. They sold the car for a lot of money and it made a splash. Saab always had the greatest accessories, teaming this with “heritage” parts could be a money maker and a way of keeping and adding to the customer base.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 8 months ago

+1

Wim Maes
Member
4 years 8 months ago
I could not help it, but I had a big smile on my face reading the story Tim…. And I’m still not able to let the smile go. Same thing when I’m driving my Saab…. While we are dreaming…; Would it not be a good idea, after producing the current 93 for the first years,to plan indeed the new 91 and the 93. But if I was able to put in some ideas.. I would start with other model names… For example the 91 becomes the 90 and the 93 becomes the new 900, same for the 95… will be… Read more »
Coke is it
Member
4 years 8 months ago
My guess is that it’s less expensive to develop a new 9-5 on the new Phoenix platform since all engineers already are working on that platform. They know what the platform can do. A 9-1 built on a platform from another manufacturer will lead to engineers to learn a new platform and customize it to be a Saab and not just a rebadged BMW/Mini/Whatever. Many components can be shared between the 9-3 and 9-5 since they are built on the same platform and that will make both the 9-3 and the 9-5 cheaper to manufacture. In Sweden a new 9-5… Read more »
rune
Member
4 years 8 months ago

“They need to be released within months of each other” — even if that would have meant delaying the release of the sedan..?

I strongly suspect that if taking that action had been an easy thing to do, they most likely would have thought of that themselves (and carried it out).

Coke is it
Member
4 years 8 months ago

My guess is that there wasn’t enough money to finalize the SC on time. But a new owner need to have funding to get the sedan and the combi released closer together. One solution to minimize the need for more than one body style right away is to introduce the hatch back, that would be a nice compromise to everyone that want a combi and to those who prefer a sedan. It would of course appeal to all that are longing for a hatch back. It’s a win win.

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

New models are typically staggered to maintain interest in the model over its life span.

akis96
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Although my girl-friend probably would love to drive a 9-1 (preferreable electric or at least hybrid) I need something the size of the Saab 9000 to transport my stuff & the whole family.
Saabs are cars for active folks… they like to transport, move or tow stuff… a small car means less weight being allowed to being towed. The “old” Saab 9-5 sc is just great.

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago

That is why Saab could probably do with two model lines in the long run – (very) small 9-1 for the city-dwelling folks to carry the essentials around (up to four people, shopping, kids, perhaps some sporting gear like a bike on a clever bike rack), and a 9-3/9-4/9-5 series of mid-sized vehicles for the whole family and longer trips.

m!ko
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Till, nice prophets, hope them all are true, but… – I’m worried about the “35.000 units of OG 9-3” – without that, further developements can be hard to make into real models, so… Saab needs a loads of cash from possible new owner (it is not sold yet, sic!) – good thing would be, what someone mentioned here before (sorry, I can’t remember who and when, it’s not my idea, but it’s a good idea) – sell cars like Apple sells their products – launch them on market and say: they are ready tu buy, you can place bids right… Read more »
David-SAAB
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Perfect scenario. Niche models can be good, look at Mercedes-Benz and BMW, these guys are the niche masters. Many cars from 1 platform while each car looks completely different.
Figures crossed hey?

OliverH
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Hopefully the drawings come true in general – new owner, production ramps up. And we’re in line that production can start in summer (negotiations with suppliers, staffing the departments, pushing phoenix). Maybe the time to relaunch of production can be used to use first components of Phoenix while make the 93 GM IP free. I’m personally no friend of a 9-1/ 9-2 or 9-4. But before discussing models (which are aligned to market demands) it needs to be defined if america (US/ Canada) is the volume market or any of the other expanding markets. This has to be decided by… Read more »
David-SAAB
Member
4 years 8 months ago

++1

kochje
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Nice writing. However I am not in agreement with the volume of the 9-5 (A major problem in 2010 was that the 9-5 was no car to make volumes.”), at least not if the new owner has serious plans to enter the Chinese market. Chinese are fond of big sedan cars; so the new 9-5 on the basis of the Phoenix platform will have a huge volume opportunity in China. So I agree that 9-3 and 9-1 are good ideas but do not kill the 9-5 while that would be a big mistake. The actual 9-5 BG would also have… Read more »
OliverH
Member
4 years 8 months ago

And I don’t know if a Saab dealer wants to deal with 91 customers, which are likely customers moving from other brands to Saab. The 91 is entry as the customers also.

MariusGTV
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Sounds good. Revamp/improve the current 9-3 to generate more interest and hope it keeps the buyers looking for a good saloon/wagon/cabriolet interested and develop a new 9-1/9-2 which really engages and strengthens Saabs core qualities! I don’t see why the current (albeit improved) 9-3 couldn’t carry on as a one model offering. Alfa Romeo currently only offer two models and both are hatchbacks; one a three door and one a five door! No wagon, no saloon, no coupe, no cabrio. If Saab can still offer the 9-3 in all its different forms then I think it would at least keep… Read more »
David-SAAB
Member
4 years 8 months ago

What about Alfa 159 saloon, 159 sportwagon, Brera, MiTo, Guilietta, Spider. That’s 6 body styles.

anders
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Alfa doesn´t produce the 159/Brera/Spider anymore.

David-SAAB
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Still on sale in Australia

David-SAAB
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Still manufacturers but not sold in all markets

David-SAAB
Member
4 years 8 months ago

….and not to mention Guilia arrives into showrooms 3rd quarter this year (replacement 159) and AlfaSud SUV first quarter next year. One cannot live on 2 models alone.

m!ko
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Guys, isn’t the NG9-5 full GM IP? So new model should be developed also by longering phoenix platform, as a whole new car, current NG9-5 is not going to be allowed to make for anybody, like was said by some of GM’s spokesman last days

“9-4 like” car would be also a volume pusher, so don’t push it away – vide the popularity of crossovers, SUVs etc.

kochje
Member
4 years 8 months ago

So “like” 9-5 and “like” 9-4 and both without any GM IP anymore.
However the styling can more or less be kept, not?
These cars are unique on today’s roads and do at least not come out of the general catalogue nearly all other brands do take their models from.

exsaab
Member
4 years 8 months ago

It would be possible to run with a 1 car model line if you have the heavy financial support of a major backer, ie GM/Fiat!

Going it alone on sub 35000 units I think would be a bridge too far. I think I saw VM’s breakeven number at 100k units!

liftarn
Member
4 years 8 months ago

With the GM fat trimmed the break even was at 80k units.

Troels, Denmark
Member
4 years 8 months ago

9-1 before 9-5 : YES! – I agree!
My personal opinion (which might not be very popular here 🙂 ), in continuing your scenario: Forget all about a new 9-4X! If Saab will get this chance to change direction I think Saab should stick to the heritage about aero-dynamics and work hard to be leading in environment-friendly cars in general, by making innovations and developments regarding power-train, weight-reduction, aerodynamics and much more. All turning the Saab-image, even more, in an eco-friendly direction.

michael
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Don’t forget about fun and great design! 🙂
9-X BH and Air for me, please. Maybe with some Phoenix clues.

Troels, Denmark
Member
4 years 8 months ago

You are so right! And 9-XBH and AIR are my favourites as well 🙂

Ralph
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Yes, all of that and in a small package. Kind of how Saab started with the 96. The same audience still exists, I’m sure.

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Does it? Most people associate with the 900 not the 96. Remember that Saab is a premium car, producing only small cars will alienate many people. The 9-5 and 9-4 are right sized for premium cars, even the 9-3 is a bit small. There are many of us in the snow belt that need a functional car, not just a small eco statement.

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Again, perceptions of the US vs. RoW are so divergent Saab needs to make a choice. They’ve had the right portfolio for the US, and still failed. Perhaps Saab needs to remain a very niche choice in the US.

goose
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Nice – reading this successtory almost makes this bankruptcy as the best Saab could overcome.VM himself could not have been more motivating.

I only missed the part about the ‘grand opening’ of the new Saab Museum. Would be great if the municipality and New Saab would enter into some sort of JV and exploit the museum together.

Toby K
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Its a great shame about the 9-5 and 9-4, I liked them (but not enough to buy one)

Agree if Saabs volumes have to sise to ensure profitability you have to look at the bulk market segment which is “compact”
If you can compete with Vauxhall’s Astra , the VW Gold or Audi A3 by entering a well made entry level car that includes the Saab Values (eg hybridised, AWD, turbo charged )you will have a market at your disposal bigger than the luxury sector. its a good idea. Question is can it be done in the time available?

xlx
Member
4 years 8 months ago
If the PhoeniX platform is suitable for NG9-3 only, than both 9-1 as well as 9-5 would mean development of a whole new car, wouldn’t it ? After the so desired restart the unit sales would be low anyway. And a 9-1 would mean lower margin than a new 9-5, even at a reasonable price and lower unit sales. Also if Saab would like to be seen in company car fleets, 9-5 would make more sense. Therefore imho from the money perspective Saab would earn more money = faster recover from red numbers with a 9-5 than with a 9-1.… Read more »
SpinM
Member
4 years 8 months ago
I don’t know about 9-1, but would dearly love to see a golf or a BMW 1 series (if you prefer that)size model, that can outclass the former in terms of handling and perceived quality and the later in terms of practicality. A light, cool looking entry level Saab. From there I would go for a Sonett (think something between Audi TT and Lotus) to impove the image of Saabs as light, fast and cool cars (but never forget safety). Only after that the time would be ripe for a 9-5 as it takes loads of reputation before you can… Read more »
baas900i
Member
4 years 8 months ago

what about the addition of a light commercial vehicle akin to the peugeot partner, citroen berlingo, vw caddy, it should create a sound income stream if the scandinavian municipal authorities decided to support regional industry.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Depending on who buys Saab—-I can see some of their future models being Asian/Indian small cars re-engineered/rebadged as Saabs. That will cover the lowest end of the line-up. They can continue to offer premium cars at the higher end, that are pure Saab—-made in Sweden. The sweet spot is the middle—the current 9-3, with a little imagination and tweeking—-can carry the load for a couple more years.

baas900i
Member
4 years 8 months ago

paying good money for “the badge, the brand” then dumbing it down would not make sense…

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Making money and staying in business makes sense. Other consumer items have benefited for decades—-trading on a name/badge but decontenting items and lowering the price. It’s been done successfully with cars too. The approach Saab had for the last couple decades drove them out of business. If they are to start again, they need to do something very different in terms of product positioning, pricing and model offerings. If a desireable, affordable car can’t be built in Sweden, it needs to be sourced somewhere else—-but the brand will still move the cars. I’m not saying they need to rebadge junk——but… Read more »
Thylmuc
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Rover desperately tried that.

Dan P
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Agreed, that would completely destroy any respect for the brand. It’s bad enough that Saab’s were known for a long time as “rebadged Vectra’s”, without them becoming an absolute laughing stock by badge-engineering third-world cars. They need to build solid, reliable, European-built cars, end of. Why throw away their one advantage over brands like Hyundai, Kia, etc?

metalhead
Member
4 years 8 months ago

I believe the 9-1 would be a bad choice, simply because i don’t believe Saab can make it attractive enough to get people to get the 9-1 over the Polo or the A1. I would say, get the current 9-3 up and running ASAP, make a 2 door shorter version to compete with the C30, 1Series, A3, or Sirocco. Also make that a 2 seater convertible, along with the current 9-3 lineup, I am sure its more than enough to bring the extra cash. And please, please, get the V6 engine back into the 9-3.

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Why a V6? A V6 has never been a Saab “thing” and they have always been slow selling. How about a turbo4 that can accelerate the way an old hot 2.3T 9000 or 9-5 did.

Saablime
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Great article. Very thought provoking. I’d be interested in a 9-1. I also like thinking actively about the future of Saab. Here’s to more of that.

JM Gaitan
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Target Hyundia or Kia, the European alternative? Change the dealership culture to instead of an owner/customer to being a member of a “club” and have 6 year/100K mile bumper-to-bumper warranties. You have to beleive the the age of the design that almost all of the bugs are worked out.

A Saab 9-3 with a 1.6T or a 2.0T and getting 30-35mpg hwy at a reasonable price say 28-32K I think would be a steal. offer a performance Hirsch edition.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Right on target—-JM, if they can execute what you just described, they will be stronger than they ever have been. Yes, European alternative to Hyundai/Kia—-price points closer to Volkswagen and Mazda—-not Audi and BMW. That doesn’t mean they can’t produce a flagship model that competes at the higher end (Hyundai does). But to survive, they need to move downmarket to sell cars.

JM Gaitan
Member
4 years 8 months ago

A Diesel option would be nice too – The new Passat with a TDI is 30K, wow, can Saab produce a 9-3 with XWD and a Diesel for the same price? I would buy one today. No AWD offered on Audi A3 nor VW Passat/Jetta, with the diesel option.

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago

This all proves US, for the time being, is a lost game for Saab.

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Just remember as all manufacturers have learned, volume does not necessarily equate to profit. Downmarket cars equate to smaller profits. Also, go too far downmarket and you could damage perceptions.

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Hyundai? KIA? I think driving those brands proves one of two things only (even if it sounds shallow) and that is:

-You are cheap!

-Your life choices have not allowed you to purchase a real car, instead you have purchased 80% of a real car even if it is reasonably well styled and well equipped. Kind of like a cheap veneer over plywood.

philip
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Going for the 9-1 ahead of 9-5 would not be a risk free option. The smaller the model the fiercer the competition in terms of advertising, price and style (so model life is shorter), and therefore the more important volume becomes to reach break even. It is not a market in which Saab has any heritage or reputation which will make it difficult to get potential customers into the showroom to see the new 9-1. Develop and stabilize your core business and expand from there. I think that makes 9-5 a safer development, and the SC provides a model in… Read more »
metalhead
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Spot on, the competition for the 9-1 is much more difficult to break into, especially when you are a brand new company.

Dejjo
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Come on Youngman, make it happend….bring on the 9 with a bunch of numbers after it 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9…….and a nice little sonett and aero X supercar.

RS
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Great article Till. Whoever ends up owning Saab has to make a strategical decision about positioning Saab. To me there is no alternative to keeping it premium (more expensive than the VW’s and KIA’s) regardless of the current situation. Saabs are built for the road/use and ones you start slipping down from that into a price war there is no stopping. However they should put in smaller turbo engines in the 91/92 and the NG 9-3 ASAP in order to reduce starting price. A bit OT. I’ve seen numerous comments about Saabs being too heavy in the past two years… Read more »
m!ko
Member
4 years 8 months ago

how about modern mateials? carbon fiber, light metals etc? Saab was always innovative, so make a car lighter, keeping it safe is a thing to do. As a bonus you’ll get a lower fuel consumption, and maby a little more cash from spare parts, like repairing a carbon fiber car after an accident will be more expensive.

1. I don’t want anybody to have an accident
2. If it happens, the cost of repairing should be taken by insurance companies 🙂

RS
Member
4 years 8 months ago

I have nothing against light super strong materials but they cost a lot of money pushing the asking price higher and margins lower. That’s why we don’t see them in affordable cars.
I’ve also been told that some ‘aluminum Audis’ have sky high insurance cost because they’re so expensive to repair. Carbon fiber must be the same?

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Why does a car have to be light? A strong selling point for our new 9-4 was the perception of weight and solidity, something our 9-3 does not posses. This is also why in the past I have enjoyed older Mercedes models. They feel substantial, they feel well crafted, they feel safe.

m!ko
Member
4 years 8 months ago

I do understand enthusiastic voice, that heavier cars are more to like, but I’m from the country, where for average salaray you can get a small bucket of petrol,

@RS – good to know about that alu-audis, thanks for the tip,

and also agree, that a car with lighter modern materials is more expensive at the beginning – that’s true, I didnn’t think about that, so… still no replacement for displacement, heavy and well equipped cars are going to be built, and consume seas of oil

michael
Member
4 years 8 months ago

If it could have a carbon fiber monococque, it would not need to be fixed unless a car crashed in the wall on some 200km/h. But this is a dream anyway until someone founds a way to make carbon fiber parts in production, not by hand.
Audis (and all other aluminium cars) are so expensive to repair because aluminium requires a special welding process, is very difficult to paint and also the parts are put together with rivets and glue (rivet-bonding). Kind of insane for a thing that lasts 10 years, if you ask me. 🙂

RS
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Jason, see my post above 😉 But to be honest the NG 9-5 with autobox and XWD would have benefitted from a small diet. Weighing around 2 tons it is a lot for a 300 hp V6, not to mention a 220 hp Turbo4.
A S-class Merc is the same with 380 to 500 hp. I wonder what GM was thinking putting power restrictions on Saabs in general…

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago
They were protecting Cadillac. It amazes me that the people in Michigan, and other parts of the US feel that Cadillac is a luxury brand. I rent Cadillacs at the airport when I need a big sedan, other than that I can think of no one that purchases these things that is not over 65 or a Criminal, or Jersey Shore wannabe with greasy hair and too much male jewelry. The one exception is the escalade, and that was primarily because it was a luxurious Suburban and offered with All Wheel Drive instead of 4wd unlike the GMC and Chevrolet… Read more »
Bernard
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Unlike almost everyone else here, I think a new 9-4X or 9-2X would be the most important second car. However, the most important aspect of this car is that Saab must re-think what an SUV/CUV can be. Compare the 1970s 99 Combi-Coupé to a Volvo wagon to see what I mean. Saab must provide utility, comfort over rough roads (ground clearance, comfortable suspension) without the compromise of a high center of gravity, poor fuel mileage, high cost, low driving enjoyment, and derivative styling. The nearest thing currently on the market is the Countryman, but it’s awkward and ugly and its… Read more »
Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Sure. Think MPV more than SUV. People buy SUV because:

1. They’re fashionable
2. They think they can haul more stuff and passengers

Saab is not fashionable per se and won’t be. People won’t be buying Saabs because Paris Hilton drives one. But people could buy a Saab 9-4X because it hauls more stuff in a better way than other “CUVs” – and doesn’t itself look like a wannabe dork or make you look like a pretentious deekhead.

Bernard
Member
4 years 8 months ago

It’s not just a fashion thing. They do ride better over rough roads, which is more and more of an issue in most of North America (and probably China).

They are also easier to get in and out of, which makes them appealing to baby boomers.

They also provide better sight lines, mostly because of all the other SUVs on the road…

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

They also have ground clearance that makes them easy to deal with in New England snowstorms.

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

It is funny that the countryman comes up, we looked at this when we bought the 9-4x. The 9-3x would have been great but it wasn’t made “Cross Country” enough. you are right that the Countryman is ungainly, it also is not terribly functional in regards to space etc.

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Actually, living in a country where we only have a vague idea of what a road should be, I have found premium sedans to soak up the bumps better than the SUVs, but you sure are right when it comes to getting in/out and the perceived better visibility (actually, where it counts, sedans are better again, especially Saabs). But both are delivered just as well by non-offroad-wannabie CUVs and MPVs. Think Buick Rendezvous without the ugly gene and with a serious interior. Or Opel Zafira. Those kinds of cars are all the rage in most regions but North America –… Read more »
JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

who wants to buy a minivan? I wouldnt say that the 9-4 has off-road aspirations, it is a crossover much like the Rendezvous. I believe that the assumption that Saab doesn’t need the American market is wrong. Market share is unimportant, even a tiny market share equates to thousands of sales. This market is, and will continue to be, important for Saab because buy cars and Saab has a strong customer base here.

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Come on over to Europe, everybody and their grandma wants a “minivan” – actually, a compact MPV. Then hop on a plane to Japan, where “minivans” of all shapes and sizes dominate the streets, and finally have a chat with the Chinese businessmen, who value the comfort of “full-size business minivans”, such as the Buick Firstland. Saab had the most success in the US when they were making the most un-American cars. Same for VW with their Beetle – they actually were trendsetters, not trend-followers there, leading to the hillarious development of the Chevrolet Corvair. Saab should remain un-American and… Read more »
JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago
On the idea that Saabs are not fashionable-Saab had the greatest success when Robert Sinclair realized that his customers wanted expensive toys not appliances. Saabs should be different, they should be more intelligent, I do not believe for one second that Saab can not reinvent the Crossover as we know it. If Saab produced an XWD equivalent to the old 9000T (i.e. a 9-5x Sportcombi or better yet a hatch) then this would be the ultimate vehicle. This accomplishes the same thing. I am not saying build a car that follows the crowd (apparently this is OK as long as… Read more »
Doctor Donk
Member
4 years 8 months ago
New owners of Saab please drop idea of cheap cars. Target at luxury segment (Bentley, Porsche, Maserati) producing small number of cars. I believe that SAAB employers got enough skills to pay that segment, they only question is money to start. 1) Don’t sell saabs which can’t make 0-100 at less than 5 seconds and can’t archive 250km/h. 2) Don’t try to get money by producing tons of low quality cars. 3) No plastic in cabin. No fake wood, no fake leather. 4) Everything people know about safety should be in any saab. 5) No producing outside of Trollhattan 6)… Read more »
JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Not many things in that list other than safety that equate to a real SAAB

Thylmuc
Member
4 years 8 months ago
For a complete change, I like to suggest a totally different concept, different from anything so far done. It is a combination of own ideas I had before, and the Scania modular concept that allows virtually any truck configuration from basic modules. Assume that to be based on the Phoenix 9-3.: -Not three variants like hatch, sedan, and wagon. Instead, the rear is an open interface that allows the owners “plugging in” “trunk modules” that convert the car to whatever you want it to be. Hatch, sedan, or Toppola. Or Pick-up. -Not one size (must) fit it all. Instead, one… Read more »
Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago
I believe there is something important between the lines of what you say – Saabs should come off the production line as standard as possible, and be customized at the dealer’s. There isn’t THAT much you can do, but still: 1. Engine chiptuning 2. Exhaust modifications 3. Add-on hybrid capability is a great idea! -> if feasible 4. Extra interior appointments 5. Wheel swaps 6. Accessories The sole purpose of “extras” on automobiles is price discrimination – to make the customer who can pay $2K more for the same car pay that money and feel they are getting something extra… Read more »
Thylmuc
Member
4 years 8 months ago

No. I did not mean this. Google for the Scania approach.

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Perhaps, but I still believe I had a good idea 🙂

Scania’s approach, which I have found only moderately irrelevant links googling for, is not quite copiable by Saab due to very different unit cost, production volumes and relationships with customers. Scania is more of a “mobility solution provider”, Saab delivers finished consumer goods.

Thylmuc
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Finished consumer goods is what I question. For sure, or more precisly, for cost reasons, that can only go so far, and will never reach the level of Scania. But why not take the concept a bit further than what was already aimed at with the Phoenix platform? A bit more individualised production where it really counts. Body concept, interior space, etc. I forgot to mention a heavyweight towing kit… It might in fact make more sense to provide variants and luxury options for the 9-3, than to develop a completely different car, i.e. a 9-5. At least given the… Read more »
Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago

I believe the technology is simply not there. There are ways to make short-series bodies at reasonable prices (hydroforming), but they seem to limit the flexibility of such arrangements with regard to what you propose. I don’t believe this is where the automotive industry’s untapped potential lies, at least for now.

But I might be very wrong. I know nothing about automotive engineering and design.

BLACKAERO
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Saab is a European car company. Therein lies it’s cache. Yes, Americans are supposed to like big cars and most car manufacturers have had to accommodate that purported need, but if they want to maximize sales they also have to have a “midsize” model in their lineup for people like me who do not like or want a big car. My two 9-3’s fit me like a glove. I cannot imagine owning any other car. Every time I drive them they put a smile of satisfaction on my face. I think a company like Kia could be a good model… Read more »
Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Kia does it totally opposite from Saab – by cutting corners. Their products are OK – but only just. They seem to be as good as the other cars, and if you’re not especially demanding and not much into cars, they’re OK. If you try to pry under the covers, you will see the build quality and materials are not quite VW-level, the cars don’t handle all that well, the fuel economy numbers are a bit off, the NVH could be better, there is a list of comfort-limiting gremlins overlooked during the design phase etc. But for most buyers, and… Read more »
Bernard
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Kia/Hyundai are doing exactly what Toyota did in the 80s and 90s, with the added twist that they are spending a little bit of money on design.
As my mechanic says, “they sell cars to people who don’t like cars.”

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago

I believe Toyota and Honda were a bit more perfectionist – but they have discovered somewhere midway through the 1990s that Americans aren’t as demanding as the Japanese and some European customers, and they’d readily accept a larger, yet 80% “undercooked” car.

This is why Hyundai and Kia are making a killing in the US, and are still fighting for a meaningful market share in Europe.

SAABfansince14
Member
4 years 8 months ago

No more REBADGING! Saab can’t command any kind of premium that way. The annoying endless comparisons to its similar cousin never bodes well for Saab, and people do a lot of research these days into buying cars. The current gen 9-3 is done for face it. The launch needs to be focused on brand new merchandise all around. Otherwise it’s not much of a rebirth/ second chance.

BMW Rider
Member
4 years 8 months ago
9-3 has a slim chance of carrying the torch and selling in numbers but it would have to have a major revamp of the infotainment system to even have a hope to attract new buyers. Pricing will have to be on par with VW or lower. It was a great car in 2003, it’s still a good car, but it’s not a premium car in it’s current form. New variants are probably out of the question (hatchback and coupe), too much money for crash testing and development for a stopgap model. The market would have to live with the SS,… Read more »
Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Look at JLo commercials. Look at Fiat sales. Think again.

m!ko
Member
4 years 8 months ago

It’s not J-Lo’s fold, that Americans don’t like fiat. They still remember “Fix It Again Tony”, and, of course, mentioned before – fiat 500 – it’s to small for the Americans. And selling a “fashion toy” in volume of 25.000 units – it’s a dream for fiat. unreachable. Even if it was advertised by Bruce Willis rescuing the world from Mappet Mutants. The fiat 500 would be eaten by cookie monster, and Gonzo would take all badges from Lancia and rebadge it to Chrysler.

The only F-word Americans know, is Ferrari.

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago
No, it’s JLo’s fault. She failed to resonate with the target audience, and the ads are plain stupid and pointless. If the entirety of the Internet says that, it probably is true. Americans like the Fiat, but it’s a fashion choice. Fiat failed to make their products in vogue and lost any track of what the target audience should have been. This proves how hard it is to promote a product on image alone. It’s better to have some really substantial advantages on your side, and Saab has boatloads of those. Just make sure the right people get to know… Read more »
m!ko
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Every prouct should be advertised in a complex philosophy, that’s what was poor for Saab during last years. building good cars is not enough. Make people to buy them – it’s a challenge. About adverts i know, that you can put in it any actor, but that’s the director, who says, like actor/actress should play, and that’s the PR/CI departments, who finds the actors and accepts strategy. Some agency showed plain and stupid spot with J-Lo, and Fiat’s communication department accepted it. I’m informed about Fiat’s way in USA only by official channels, sell voumes etc, so I’m leaving this… Read more »
BMW Rider
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Indeed there are thousands of Saab enthusiasts but they didn’t by the current lineup of 9-3,4 and 5 in droves so why would they buy the current 9-3 in droves if that is the sole offering? Saab needs to attract new buyers without preconceived notions of what a “real” Saab is because the Saab they buy is a real Saab to them. Saab needs is loyal following as much as it needs to grow new enthusiasts if a rebooted company is going to survive. If you don’t like the pop celebrity spokes person thing, tho either Beyonce or Kim Kardashian… Read more »
Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago

How about going for the fans/owners themselves, explaining why they have bought their 2011 9-3s (because we did, far more than 9-5s, do remember that), how the car really is as good as it gets and no worse than competitive choices.

Even Mercedes, whose client base is usually thought of as people you don’t want to talk to, and neither do they want to talk to you, had a campaign built around authentic owner statements, perhaps overly dramatized and overstyled:

http://www.mbusa.com/impact/index

akis96
Member
4 years 8 months ago

this feels like the national soccer team – every citizen is a wanna-be team-choach and knows what to do all the time…
Right now there are hundreds of Saab-Fans thinking they could run Saab and decide what’s being produced. I hope we aren’t scaring off potential investors who can’t handle fans being that close and involved 😉

zippy
Member
4 years 8 months ago

The only problem with the 9-5 is that Saab totally dropped the ball and never actively marketed the car. The car should have easily sold 50000 units a year with the right advertising. It is, by far, the most unique looking car in its class and shows what Saab is capable of when outside interferences are minimalised.

philip
Member
4 years 8 months ago

I do agree it looks great (and drives better on 17 inch wheels than 18 inch).

It is so good that GM want to kill it, and that appears to the main objective of GM at this time.

jond
Member
4 years 8 months ago

The 9-5 is a lovely car, but a bit underpowered.

You know, there may be scope for a really upmarket saloon/hatchback to compete with Jaguars and higher end Mercs with all the power, the looks and the handling. That would be my dream and it would enhance the brand image, which might also help sales at the lower end. It could be sold all over the World. But actually I’m glad that it doesn’t exist already, because I’m afraid that would create all sorts of frustrations and/or financial stress for me. Maybe in seven or eight years’ time? Please?

kochje
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Just buy a Hirsch or Map Tune and the issue can be easily solved.

kochje
Member
4 years 8 months ago

sorry; Map Tun

OliverH
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Have fun with getting the horses on the road. As i can tell you with my 95 Saab-Performance: No pony more will get the way on the road. close to 300 hp is the limit of driveability. I don’t want to drive a 95 project car from Maptun with their aggressive setups.

SAABBob
Member
4 years 8 months ago

I got shivers while reading your post, till. Well done.

SAAB should continue its leadership in safety & responsible performance (turbocharging). I would welcome a 9-1 (or 90) to complement a new 9-3 (or 900) in a world where fuel prices are likely headed upward. At the same time, perhaps the new owners (please let there be new owners) should rethink SAAB’s presence here in North America where the baseball-cap crowd has been fooled by their “need” for trucks.

welshwizard645
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Much as I hope Saab gets resurrected and finds a way of getting the current models produced again I see a few problems: a) the plant is haemorrhaging staff now b) sales organisations are evaporating c) Saab perceived as dead, so improving perceptions in the trade would be more difficult than it was in 2010 So, if someone came along with £500 million today, how soon can production be resurrected? Saab, in the meantime will have disappeared from people’s consciousness… Final note, in the news here BMW Mini Cooper S models powered by the 1.6 Turbo engine (PSA/BMW unit) are… Read more »
hilmar
Member
4 years 8 months ago
For a future scenario don´t forget to advertise all around the globe that Saab is now economically stable. 😉 Although I have no idea how Saab should be able to take away customers from other premium brands they are used to. I would like a more quiet diesel engine.There is enough power with the existing 4cyl petrol engines, the cost effectiveness is o.k., no need for a 6cyl. I think. For the future the development of affordable fuel cell technology would be great. The 9-3 and 9-1 is a good start, a smaller (like 9-3X) and a bigger SUV or… Read more »
ArchDandy
Member
4 years 8 months ago

+1

Chicago Swede
Member
4 years 8 months ago

I just want a vehicle the size of the OG 900. It was the perfect size and could carry anything with that huge hatchback! Make it a fast turbo-hybrid and watch them fly!! Why by a BMW 3 series or Audi A4 when you could have a SAAB??

saabturbo
Member
4 years 8 months ago

+1 000 000
I so agree. Make the new 9-3 as good as the old 900 and then make a Sonett! The end. No crapy Suv’s. The 9-4X is a bad idea from the start. Suv’s don’t go fast, they don’t handle well, they aren’t aerodynamic, the aren’t fuel efficient and they are ugly…not for Saab!

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

I beg to differ. The 9-4 handles well, looks good, etc. And it is a good vehicle to own. I would argue that it handles better or as good as any of the Classic 900s I have owned. I would argue that the Sonett was a flop, regardles of it being interesting, and is not a functional car as all Saabs should be. That being said, I would love a modern equivalent of the SPG, particularly with XWD.

Bernard
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Given that SUVs are not going away as a major market segment, shouldn’t Saab try to make one that fixes all of these issues?
I would love to see a Saab SUV that’s fast, handles well, is aerodynamic, fuel efficient and good looking.
Don’t assume that new Saabs can only be copies of existing designs.

Chicago Swede
Member
4 years 8 months ago

WHO NEEDS AN SUV WHEN YOU COULD HAVE A OG SAAB 900 WITH A HATCHBACK BIG AS REFRIGERATOR? sorry, I just don’t get SUV’s by any brand. Who wants to drive a truck that drinks oil fields whole? A true SAAB hybrid SUV would be the only way you would get me behind the wheel of an SUV.

Zizou
Member
4 years 8 months ago

AMEN!

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Sorry to burst your bubble, but there is typically only a 3-4mpg difference between what we have been getting in the 9-4x 3.0i XWD and our 2009 9-3SC 2.0tXWD in combined cycle driving. When we make trips we tend to use the 9-3 because highway only it is about a 7mpg difference, but not in mixed driving. I am all for fuel efficiency, but the 9-4 is more comfortable and functional in many circumstances. The compromise would be a 4 cylinder Turbo 9-3 based SUV similar to an Audi Q5 2.0t

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Whole oil fields whole? A little exaggeration isn’t it? We are talking about a Crossover not a Hummer or Suburban.

davidgmills
Member
4 years 8 months ago
If the 9-5 was not a car to sell in large volumes, please explain why the LaCrosse has been selling like hotcakes in the US. I see them everywhere. But of course an entry level LaCrosse is probably less than an entry level 9-3, so the real reason the 9-5 didn’t sell here was cost and perhaps the fact that so few people even knew Saab was still alive, although if sold at a better price point, many more people would have known Saab was still alive. The 9-5 is highly tweaked LaCrosse and no doubt much better, but the… Read more »
davidgmills
Member
4 years 8 months ago

And if the 9-4 had GMC on it instead of Saab, it would be selling like hotcakes too at the right price point.

JasonVT
Member
4 years 8 months ago

People know the Buick exists. The equivalent Cadillac SRX is nearly 10,000 dollars more expensive than the 9-4 but people never got a chance to know about the 9-4 because there was no advertising. People only saw the initial splash with the 50,000 dollar 9-5 and then it dropped off the radar with no ads. Do the people outside of this forum know about the 9-5 turbo4 in the 30s? I don’t think so.

Alex740
Member
4 years 8 months ago

It’s all about the demographic, Saab appeals to the Audi/Volvo crowd here in the US and the obviously GM made 9-5 and 9-4x did not appeal to them, they were both made in a very American way of more car for your money rather than more quality (when compared to Audi/Volvo). The large Buick and GMC appeal to a totally different kind of American consumer that wants the most car for the money and considering the kind of junk they have been buying from GM the past 20 years, the LaCrosse is an amazing car at a fantastic price.

CSD_ChineseSaabDriver
Member
4 years 8 months ago

9-3 has big future in China, but only if the 9-3 sedan is modified with extra length like BMW, MB, Audi all did in China. The backseat of most sedans are normally too narrow even for not big guys.

Alex740
Member
4 years 8 months ago
The market is full of medium sized and largeluxury cars, Saab should be different to make a name for itself rather than always being 2nd best to the Germans. There is a large gap here in the US at least for small, european, premium and versatile cars. Mini is the only company that comes close to that but I think their retro cutsie look is turn off for a lot of people who want something fun to drive with the versatility of a hatch that’s still nice enough to show off around town. I would say a 9-1 and then… Read more »
Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Not necessairly – the bulk of the Chinese auto market is still small cars. The Chinese burn the same oil that we all do, and the Chinese government is getting really tough on larger vehicles, at least the large-displacement ones. At the same time, the Chinese middle class is emerging, with entrepreneurs, managers and people in creative professions (both artistic and that of “polytechnic” kind), as well as finance and professional services. There will be more and more people looking for the “European” kind of premium – not too much, not too showy, only just, but all of high quality.… Read more »
Alex740
Member
4 years 8 months ago

But we have already seen Youngman’s plans for Saab and they included an SUV larger than the 9-4x and and sedan larger than the 9-5. I hope I’m wrong but all indicators over the last 6 months point to Youngman wanting to take Saab upmarket and big

Snowshoe
Member
4 years 8 months ago

The car industry will need to change and and provide more efficient transport
The second car in a family is today quite often a small and sometimes older car.
I think there is a market for a somewhat smaller second car that is SAFE and efficient. Perhaps a small hybrid or electric car.
It might not need all the bells and whistles of a premium car but it should still be built with quaily.

Red J
Member
4 years 8 months ago
Nice picture Till, nevertheless the guys in THN have already shown to be able of a bit more. I don’t have full insight of what has been developed there since 2009, but from the few I know I can say that it is at least as much as much bigger car companies do in the same time frame, with lots more money. So with the right funding and having phoenix as a real scalable platform different cars could make its first appearance simultaneously. And regarding those 35.000 cars, I hope they start doing as McDonalds: Think globally, act locally!!. It… Read more »
3cyl
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Something with three (or two) doors.

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