“Everyone will want to have a Saab”

This headline is a quote from an Interview that Zamier Ahmed did with ttela. A rather good interview because it has some questions asked in a way I would have done. Not all in this is interview is new to us but some parts are very interesting and open a view on the investment strategy of Brightwell. I’ll stick to the things that I found to be of particular interest for us, if you want to read the complete piece head over to ttela.se. Be careful with googletrans, it flips the sense more than once in here.

Much is currently confidential because negotiations are ongoing, but Ahmed can confirm that the company has not changed its approach. On the contrary:
– We will place a bid, but we want to do this right. It requires many analyzes, and Saab is a huge undertaking.
At the same time you eager to start production and believe that after completing the deal the timeframe two months is not unthinkable.
– As I said before, we want to start as soon as possible. The supply chain is not intact right now, but we will of course ensure that all parts of Saab are working. Our goal in all of our investments that they will come to great success in the end, and in this case, this requires that everyone is happy, says Ahmed, who confirms that Brightwell also interested in Saab subsidiary Parts.


Brightwell seems to have a very professional approach to this issue. Everything has to be done properly and it is in the interest of all as we don’t want to see Saab in a deja vu again in two years. Despite he gives a cautious timeframe for a possible restart of production he still stresses that it depends on so many factors that it is almost impossible to judge it definetely in todays situation. As I already wrote yesterday some suppliers are no longer there and to fix that will be a big task in itself.

If you want to compare his statement to the 15 weeks that Youngman was talking about please keep in mind that Brightwell plans to continue the GM models while Youngman would still have to adapt the current 9-3 to avoid GM involvement. From the sopplier side we have heared that it would take 12 weeks so I’d judge Zamier’s statement here as based on the best possible conditions.

– To say that Saab is similar to one of our previous investments would not be true. Saab is a unique animal in any way. You can not compare with another brand of car, either, says Ahmed.
But Bright Wells earlier investments – as well as an ongoing negotiation with a yet unnamed company – could fit very well with Saab, says Ahmed.
– Overall, the company fits into our portfolio, and using the products we had previously invested in and Saab’s technical expertise, we would eventually be able to do one of the most environmentally friendly cars, says Ahmed.
– I am convinced that in the future, everyone will want to have a Saab. Everyone.
How do you plan to Saab to be controlled?
– We will set up a team solely consisting of people from the automotive industry.
Where do you see Saab in a year during Brightwell?
– We produce cars. How many is too early to tell, but I see that we produce and deliver.

Here he gets to one aspect that caused quite a bit of sceptisism towards Brightwell. They are aware that they to a degree explore new fields when acquiring a car company so the get the people who add the expertise they need. What they seem to have on the other hand is knowledge on the financial side of those deals as well as a vision where to go with their investments. As Alphan Manas characterises it their goal is to focus on products that make people’s life better. When it comes to my life, my Saab surely does that.

After all, if long time experience in the car industry would gurantee success in running a company like Saab the GM days would have been like paradise for our favourite car brand. GM has proven here that if you lack a vision and understanding you have nothing to gain.

If you are considering production also in Turkey?
– We’ve talked about this, of course, but it is not in our current business plan. But in the long run, if it is successful, absolutely. The markets we want to focus on are the current, so to speak. U.S., Europe, of course.
According to Ahmed counted Saab as a premium brand in his homeland. For over half a year he has led the Brightwell team which focuses on Saab.

I’ve been stating for quite a while now that it would be dumb for any investor to put a lot of money into an acquisition of Saab and then water the brand by taking it away from Sweden. Brightwell seems to be pretty aware of the fact that the Saab brand is to a huge degree linked to Sweden. What makes me feel good when it comes to Brightwell is that they were looking at Saab already before the bankrupcy so they did already recognize its value before bankrupcy came.

When I recall all the statements we got from Brightwell so far I have to say I like what I hear. It is optimistic but not too exaggerated. They want to change things but without neglecting what Saab stands for today. A well balanced approach.

Peter Doyle
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I appreciate the wants they have but still feel they will need to get by GM. I feel no licences will be offered by GM. Anybody who ndoes buy Saab will pretty much need to start with the current 9-3 and develope the Pheonix platform. GM is afraid of the competion from another car company, even one as small as Saab. GM knows how a rival quality product can hurt their bottom line and they will do everything in their power to stop any deal of buying Saab as a whole.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I tend to agree that GM won’t license to anyone—-and if they do, to Brightwell, it will be packed with conditions that tie Brightwell’s hands as far as competing in markets where GM doesn’t want Saabs to be sold. In other words, useless licensing for much of the world. GM is still GM.

Chris Carrier
Member
4 years 7 months ago

On this board, we like to call GM “arrogant” and “afraid of competition” at the same time. The two cannot coexist. I would suggest it’s the former.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago

??? Cowards can indeed be arrogant.

Moody Saaber
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Although Saab’s Bilmuseum in Trollhättan recently avoided dissolution , the Saab Cars North America Heritage Collection are to be auctioned in a 10-car lot on Friday, February 10th, not sharing the museum’s lucky fate. Since the cars are to be sold as one lot of 10 vehicles, there’s a high change that another museum or collector will buy them and put them on display for the public. The collection, which was kept out of public display in Michigan, features some pretty awesome cars. The first one is a restored 1952 model 92 sedan 25hp with transverse-mounted two-cylinder, two-stroke engine and… Read more »
joseglv
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I like what i´m seeing too.
The optimistic side maybe is due to the “inside” knowledje(?) of VM and the possible GM involvment. GO BH!!!

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Yeah—-I hope the optimism is based on inside information and it’s not a case of incredible naievety. 8 weeks to restart production? Guys, let’s all be honest with each other: About week ago, the Youngman people were being panned here because they said they could see starting production in 12 weeks. Now, we’re hearing from Brightwell, 8 weeks. I understand the huge “advantage” of GM cooperating with Brightwell (if that’s not a fantasy). But 8 weeks to start having cars roll off a dead assembly line? I’m not an expert in manufacturing, but that seems ambitious to the point of… Read more »
hogge
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I’m becoming more and more positive about Brightwell and this entire situation.

David-SAAB
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I too am becoming quite convinced about Brightwells commitment & thorough approach to their bid and the ongoing optimism they show.
BW up!

Alex740
Member
4 years 7 months ago
I think this is all cheap talk and hot air directed squarely at the Saab enthusiast community to garner support and I find it very funny that so many people on here are falling for it. The only real piece of information they have given us is that they want to invest several hundred million euros, that’s not nearly enough of what Saab needs to restart and maintain the company AND develop new models. Aside from that, it all seems like cheap PR stunts and nice sounding quotes about the brand to get their name in the news and find… Read more »
Skipper
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Well I’m quite warming to Brightwell overall, BUT……how on earth will they get over the GM issue? Do they know something that we don’t know?

ivo 71
Member
4 years 7 months ago

They may not have to. They have stated more than once that they are talking to GM about the possibilities of continuing the production of Saab model lines with GM-content. GM’s PR doesn’t know about it, they say, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it isn’t true. If they can make GM change their attitude then they are, realistically speaking, the only ones with a chance of making Saab profitable in a reasonably short period of time without having to invest huge amounts of high-risk money for a long time.

Ivo

Katsura
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Talk is cheap, How did Saab fair under another big talker?

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 7 months ago

+1000

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago

That’s a bit of a low blow—I think the other big talker had motives that were pure. I’m not sure about this group. I hope I’m wrong, but my sense is that Brightwell is not the best option if the goal is to re-establish Saab as a viable worldwide car brand—-with a long future. No experience in the business, questionable resources—-not my first choice.

Dannii
Member
4 years 7 months ago
I for one don’t give a hoot who re-establishes Saab again as long as it is equitable, produces environmentally friendly cars and the business generates money for its shareholders. For all the experts out there, where were you when Saab was cannabilized into the Scania fold and when ABB ascquiesced to GM and sold the remainder of their stake in 2000? Did you produce this kind of persistent negative comments which has become so prevalent on this blog? Remember, someone somewhere said: “Experts, I believe, are people who know more and more about less and less until they know everything… Read more »
Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago

No, the information superhighway has grown in leaps and bounds the past 12 years. I would have never had as many sources of information to follow things back in 2000.

Allan B
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Good comment, Dannii

JasonPowell
Member
4 years 7 months ago
“Talk is cheap, How did Saab fair under another big talker?” I don’t understand comments like this. Everyone on here wants to know everything about what is going on and to say talk is cheap would mean that you would rather they wouldn’t share or “talk”. There are other groups like the Swedish group that have not spoken at all and I for one find it very annoying to not even know who they are let alone their intentions because I do like to know what is going on and a Swedish group that has an interest in Saab would… Read more »
Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Jason: I don’t disagree with most of what you wrote—-but how do you know there is “nothing left for him to gain?” Do you know if he has (or does not have) an arrangement with Brightwell, as a paid consultant? Or as a future executive if Brightwell wins a bid? I’m trying to be as objective as possible because truly, the ONLY THING I have to gain in that if Saab survives, I can buy another new Saab. That’s all I have here—-love for the brand and hope that at some point, new cars with the Saab brand go on… Read more »
JasonPowell
Member
4 years 7 months ago
To be honest, I don’t know if he is being paid anything but even if he is, it would be a drop in the hat to what he has lost. My response was more to do with the fact the he has poured all of himself into trying to save Saab and it would be much easier for him to just walk away. I don’t personally think Victor has much if anything to gain in helping a prospective buyer and I do think he truly cares about a future for Saab and Saab employees. I try not to pick favorites… Read more »
Saabim
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Brightwell will do it. Good article. I believe they know whats to do. Saab will go Turkey 🙂

bpsorrel
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I would say, “cautiously optimistic”….. 🙂

Alex
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Hah, Yea Ron Paul!

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 7 months ago
paddan
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Now THAT’S what I call real badge engineering.

spacy
Guest
4 years 7 months ago

Why are they showing a current generation 9.3, when they only have the rights to the OG9.3…..?

James
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Because they don’t only have rights to the og9-3… in fact I don’t believe they are even doing anything based on the og9-3 (do they even use the engine?)… SAAB sold IP and tooling for the 9-5 and early years 9-3ss… it surprises me to see the newer 9-3 bodywork though, I thought it was up to 2006 or something… Imho, that deal represents something analogous to what Youngman is likely looking for: cheap, opportunistic, access to technology as a stepping stone in the competitive Chinese market. The safety aspect is a big area that was lacking in Chinese cars… Read more »
xelav
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Good to here that they understand Saab =Sweden. If they find a way to produce the 95 sportestate , they ‘ll have my vote.(i wish i had à vote in this:) duh) I really want that car. M&M are still in the game? Smoothoperators…

SAABNUT
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I fail to see why BH, M/M, Youngman etc continue to pursue the process of aquiring SAAB unless they have viable plans and funding for such an undertaking.

The mere process of preparing a bid and analyze SAAB cost millions.
That brings in a sense some hope and credibility to the unfolding events.

I’ve always considered my self as an optimist and will in light of recent news continue to hope and dream of a future for SAAB, albeit restructured and different.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I agree with you—-but let’s acknowledge that Saab is dissolving like sugar in water. Something has to happen very quickly for Saab as we know it to be saved. This is taking too long.

Saabissimo
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Brightwell sure know how to make the right noises. If they will do what they say they will do, then they could be an interesting buyer. I’m still curious when it comes to their funding, but I guess that’s none of my business after all…

From a selfish standpoint (to satisfy my curiousity) it would be interesting to get some more public statements of this kind out of Mahindra. But at the same time I quite like when a negotiating partner has the business sense to skip the talking and keep the negotiations where they belong – on the negotiating table.

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 7 months ago

+1 to the latter statement

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago

One thing I’ve learned in over 25 years working with companies large, medium and small: Sometimes the biggest talkers have the least amount of goods. Sometimes the quietist executives are hiding the biggest stash of good stuff—-waiting for the right time to show their hand.

Bravada from GMI
Member
4 years 7 months ago

For the first time I can only agree with you, Angelo

davidgmills
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Me too. Its about time we agreed on something. Well to be fair, I guess we have agreed on a number of things before.

Niklas G
Member
4 years 7 months ago

>Brightwell sure know how to make the right noises.
Well, since they get advice from Victor Muller, I’m sure they know from him what is the right things to say. More interesting is whether they cab back upp all those good intentions with financing and a business plan good enough to get this deal signed.

Time will tell, Nothing we can do about it meanwhile but to hope for the best.

3cyl
Member
4 years 7 months ago

If the SAAB they build is a SAAB “everyone will want to have ” will it be a SAAB?

RS
Member
4 years 7 months ago

If it’s the former Saab engineers with their knowhow that are back to work it will be a Saab. Too much of them lost or someone else outside Sweden trying to replicate a SAAB, it won’t be.

3cyl
Member
4 years 7 months ago

SAAB engineers don’t have a history of engineering cars that everyone wants. (That is not a criticism.)

RS
Member
4 years 7 months ago
EXCELLENT point and that’s why the statement from ZA is fundamentally incorrect (some say for example only RWD cars can be premium, something that Saabs will never be). This brand is made for countries where 5 months of there year it is possible that the road is frozen. This alone brings some special characteristics to the car i.e. Saabs are not only safe, but should be very difficult to crash. The car has to be relatively heavy (sturdy) in the future also and can’t really ever be the favorite of the drifting, 0-60 mph loving automotive journalists who want their… Read more »
xelav
Member
4 years 7 months ago

@3cyl: yeah, good thought!

xelav
Member
4 years 7 months ago

They say the market will be US and europe, so maybe they may not export to China , as à deal with GM ?

metalhead
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Funny, they kept saying they will place a bid, and it takes alot of analysis, till now, no bids. And it is almost mid Feb…

Quixcube
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Not sure why they are clinging to the old 9-3 as being so vital. It’s popularity was fading rapidly over a year ago. Add another half year to bring it back into production and another 3 months for any real number of people to notice its back and I dont think it has much of a chance to sell in any real numbers. 9-4x and 9-5 might see a surge if advertised correctly, but they are out of step now with the very high fuel economy standards being pushed in those segments now. I say it’s new 900 or bust.… Read more »
mnztr
Member
4 years 7 months ago

The current 9-3, while a bit long in the tooth, is still an excellent product, and priced right, would be very popular. Just remember the buyer of SAAB has no R&D cost to depreciate against the 9-3, so they can sell it at a very attractive price point. I would load it up and sell it in a fixed config. Auto/Manual/Nav…..maybe use it to introduce the new 9-3 telematics…

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Key words: Priced Right.

davidgmills
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Sounds like a European analysis. Definitely not an American one. All dealers in North America will be long gone by the time the new 900 is built. And the 9-5 is a much better car for America than the new 900 will be. And mpgs here don’t matter as much and the 9-5 gets very good mpg for its size in turbo 4 form. The 9-4 probably has too much competition in America, but SUV’s are hot here, so maybe it could find a niche. But my dealer has not seen much interest in the 9-4. He’s had interest in… Read more »
Paul
Member
4 years 7 months ago
I think they should just sell the 94x and the 95 but there’s a problem with the 95. Have you tried getting into the rear seat? Its likely you’ll bump your head. The interior, although spacious and comfortable feels slightly more closed in than the old 95. And the car feels too big to be a drivers car. Apart from that I liked it but I think I like the 94x more until the wagon version comes out. VOB Saab (who have moved their Saab operations two doors up to their used car section), is selling their Saabs at 20%… Read more »
rune
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Well, if you sit in the back seat of the 9-5, then of course it will feel like too big to be a driver’s car! I can’t imagine how you’d be able to even reach the pedals.

Sitting in the seat designated for the driver however, turns the 9-5 into a completely different beast.

Kikaluka
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Don’t recognise what you (Paul) are saying about the 9-5. The backseat wins it hands down from all German competition (A6, 5, E), getting in never struck me or my passengers as an issue. And it’s more a drivers car than the 5 series. The 9-5 is sporty where the 5 is comfortable (read boring). Before buying my 9-5 I compared it to a 535xi, and the 9-5 wins on all the points you mention.

There is a problem with the 9-5, and that is the lack of marketing, not the product.

julie@KellySAAB
Member

+900 to both Rune and Kikaluka
I sell these cars and no one has ever complained about ingress or egress from the rear seat. And it’s clear, Paul, that you mustn’t have driven this wonderful, full sized, yet sporty and fun sedan! The 9-5 is superior in every way to the old gen as well as the competitors in it’s class.

Chris Carrier
Member
4 years 7 months ago

It is a little low, but I only notice when I try to put my 2 1/2 year old into his car seat.

Allan B
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I have to mostly disagree with Paul, too. The ng 9-5 is very nimble to drive and cosseting behind the wheel; meanwhile the backseat area is so big and comfy it is all you can do not to drift off to sleep. But I do agree with Paul that the aperture getting in and out of the back is a little low and a little restricted given how ruddy huge the car is inside and out. Sweden, August 2009 my first, and to date only, drive in a ng9-5, a fond memory …

davidgmills
Member
4 years 7 months ago

An even more legitimate complaint is the size of the trunk lid. Huge trunk and small opening. A hatch made so much sense and if you really wanted to keep the sedan look, the hatch could have been disguised.

Paul
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Yes and it’s Chris’s point I was contemplating in particular as we have an 18-month-old, plus grandparents with poor mobility. I liked the size of the trunk but not the opening which would be potentially tricky to get a stroller and wheelchair out (hence why I was waiting for the 95 wagon to come out, and why the 94x looks attractive. This was just before our daycare closed and hence any car payment has to go towards that instead unfortunately). My other point is that someone who is buying a drivers car without having to think about passengers all that… Read more »
rune
Member
4 years 7 months ago
If people refuse to get behind the steering wheel and drive it, then yes it is a problem. Logically speaking, the 9-3 and the 9-5 aren’t that many inches apart though. As for the trunk, I find the lid’s clearance quite sufficient, but I am concerned with the aperture once the seats are folded down. I once pushed a 2 meter bed through there, and I had to do all kinds of tricks to get it loaded (pull a bit, then run back and push, repeat as needed). The good news is that, unlike my 9000 CSE, I did not… Read more »
metalhead
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Just saw a Turbo6 Aero in the carpark a couple of hours ago in silver, parked my silver 9-3 beside it, man it looks good… But for the price, it is crazy in my country. The Turbo4 Vector(FWD) costs more than 200k SGD, and there is no Sat Nav, no rear entertainment, small 17inch rims, no TPMS, no ventilated seats and no lane departure warning system. With the Turbo 6, i believe it will cost more than 250k SGD, and still no Sat Nav, rear entertainment, ventilated seats, lane departure warning, or even TPMS. No matter how much you pay,… Read more »
rune
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Yeah, the SatNav option is a mystery to me. It is (IMO) a very expensive option here in Sweden (but to be fair, as I recall, priced lower than the SatNav in the German brands). If it had not been for its tight integration with the HUD, I would not have bothered with it. The one I have lacks maps. Half of my trip around Europe last summer took place out in some magical field where no roads existed — at least according to my 9-5’s SatNav. Go past Austria and you are definitively on your own. Would be interesting… Read more »
metalhead
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Yah, the IQon I believe is the best news i heard about Saab since the take over by Spyker. Many people actually likes Saab, and many more wants to get one, really. But the dealer here sells cars at throat cutting prices, and many held back. If you are here on the streets, the number of Saabs you see on the roads, you will not believe it has gone bust. There are still many who would like to get a new Saab in the future, me included.

leriksso
Member
4 years 7 months ago
I hope that the time taken is that they want to act seriously and they will make an offer they can stand. I do not trust completely in Chinese and that they would be the best for the brand. Zamier Ahmed’s vision sounds like the best for Saab right now. However, I believe that nothing happens during this month but nothing happens occasioned during the month of March, bad or good. In order to get GM to agree there are two things they need, money, and not least something to offer the GM sees gains, shareholders language. You just have… Read more »
saabyurk
Member
4 years 7 months ago

The only way I can see GM accepting a deal is if the Saab buyer agrees to use at least 50% GM technology for the next 100 years, and to stay out of China for that time also. Why would GM agree to making a little money for the next few years to help a competitor get on its feet without any GM technology so it could compete in the future without any benefit to GM? I think whoever restarts Saab will have to do it without GM.

Simon
Member
4 years 7 months ago

My opinion is that GM would accept a deal with Brightwell if the offer is good for all and if GM keeps the same amount of shares they had before the SAAB bankruptcy, without investing any new money.

Alex
Member
4 years 7 months ago
I don’t think dealing with GM would be a bad thing as long as it ensures the restart of SAAB. I’d rather have SAAB alive with GM as a temporary crutch, then a dead SAAB gone forever. Having GM licenses would do nothing to stop them from producing new vehicles in the future. It’s just a temporary measure. They need to hurry up, more and more owners/dealers/enthusiasts are being driven away as time goes by. Dealers here in the US literally think SAAB is gone for good, they are not aware of this bidding process. News of it’s survival has… Read more »
Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Agree—-but where is there any shred of credible (CREDIBLE I SAID) hope that GM will “ensure” the restart of Saab? Their public statements have been anything but.

aslak
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Shommedamonyy brightwell friends. you got global media coverage worth 200 MSEK already. Now time to show greens for some respect to Trollhättan. Who has the required 10,000,000,000 SEK to do what you promise to do.
Not you, not un-existing oil, gas, government reserves or maybe existing mickey mouse ?

dezzer
Member
4 years 7 months ago

what you taken ???

ivo 71
Member
4 years 7 months ago

@ colexavier: I’d like to see some sources providing information about Brightwell’s financial scope. You seem to have that information, given what you keep repeating here. Or are you just venting your feelings about Turks and other Asians? You know, sleazy Arabs, IP-stealing Chinks, that kind of thing…

If so then please leave this platform now and go indulge your xenophobia elsewhere. Otherwise stop spewing unsubstantiated nonsense.

Ivo

MikeSf
Member
4 years 7 months ago

What is your malfunction?

Rolf Hägg
Guest
4 years 7 months ago
I don’t hold any of this newsworthy until I hear there is a deal with GM. The only thing I’ve heard from GM is that there will be no deal for anyone. Right now, to me at least BW just hired VM to produce a lot of smoke and mirrors. None of this means anything without GM and until we hear anything from them in a positive manner, it’s pointless to continue to discuss, hope and pray. It will only lead to utter disappointment. What FACTS do we actually know now? • We know that whoever takes Saab over will… Read more »
aslak
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Best comment I read in SU in 2012

Peter, Sweden
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I really don’t get your (pessimistic) way of thinking. Saab IS an auto producing company. Why does an auto producing company have an auto producing company as the owner? It’s about visions, ideas and — money. Sure, I really don’t know how deep pockets these players have, but you don’t know either, most certainly. No one’s expecting anyone to say hooray yet, but can’t we even try to look at things positively until we get the whole picture? The benefits of negativity are non-existing.

Rolf Hägg
Guest
4 years 7 months ago
I just don’t see the point, Saab WAS an auto producing company. Now they have zero money and are only producing cars that are not finished gathering dust in a once active factory, couple that with their fate is in someone else’s hands that may or may not be qualified to deal with everything that needs to be dealt with and I can’t see the positive. Don’t get me wrong, I get that this is a very optimistic spot on the net, no doubt and I’m not here to rain on everyone’s parade, reading back through the posts, I see… Read more »
rune
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Licensing issues were a known factor and not something mentioned at the last moment. The Chinese were warned off after Lofalk mutated the deal. I understand you are frustrated, but at the moment the simplest explanation is that BH does indeed have the money (few people are willing/able to put hundreds of millions on the table only to walk away shortly afterwards). Your alternative hypothesis is more complex, and as such warrants more evidence to back it up. Is there anything the past two years have taught me, it is that rich people have nothing to gain by flaunting their… Read more »
Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago
It’s a very strong post—–but we part ways toward the end. I do believe a company that has automotive experience—-as well as experience in acquisitions of bankrupt companies—-as well as a whole hell of a lot of money—–as well as a nice little bonus of vehicles that have been approved to sell in markets around the world (including U.S. EPA certification for a couple trucks)—can most definitely rebuild Saab without GM cooperation. Yes, GM willingness to allow licensing of technology would certainly clinch the chances for success—-but a very slow, steady plan, carefully implemented, can salvage what is left of… Read more »
rune
Member
4 years 7 months ago

What good would that strategy do? Hinting of successful talks with GM to please us in the peanut gallery?

That doesn’t make any sense.

Dannii
Member
4 years 7 months ago

P – tell me quickly: when the PAG (Premier Automotive Group of Ford) was dismantled and Volvo carted off to Geely, did the Volvo fan base fan so much persistent negative comments and speculative innuendos with no real substance whatsoever vis-a-vis why Volvo was being sold to a mainland China based company and that the West really had scant knowledge about Geely nor where Geely got the wherewithal to buy Volvo?

ivo 71
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Are you really thinking that Brightwell and VM are simply blowing hot air out there just to please us or get us on their side? Come on.

Ivo

Rolf Hägg
Guest
4 years 7 months ago

Only time will tell. The second I read the money will come from investments that we can’t disclose the source, I was turned off. I don’t want to hear that kind of speak. Tell me that we have the money, show the administrators the money and the plan and then there should be no problem assuming the company, no need for smoke and mirrors, just the facts.

davidgmills
Member
4 years 7 months ago

We went through this several times two years ago and all of the prospective buyers had questionable financial reserves. It was hard to tell legit buyers from the non-legit buyers and as it turned out we still got an underfunded buyer.

And underfunded buyer will mean the death of Saab in North America. And I share your frustrations because I have six Saabs, one of which is brand new with no warranty. An underfunded buyer leaves me in the lurch.

“Show me da money” is what I care most about.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago
David: And depending on the outcome of all of this—saving Saab two years ago wasn’t/isn’t a good thing for some buyers who have cars they bought in 2011, now without warranty coverage. Having a $45,999 car without a valid warranty—-and concerns about parts being available—-it doesn’t get much worse. Hobbling along with a drastically underfunded investor is a slow death. The group that cobbled together just enough money two years ago—-went into this with good intentions but a severe misunderstanding of the resources needed to make it all work. I’m very fearful that a group of investors from Turkey might… Read more »
Alex740
Member
4 years 7 months ago
I completely agree with you P, one of the few comments with a realistic view on the matter. We have no real facts from BW, just a lot of BS feel good comments that people are latching onto. Saab needs serious investment to survive and BW and has stated they are putting in several hundred million dollars which is not nearly enough. Others have stated that they will have other investors down the road but they also still want GM involved. Has everyone already forgotten that GM essentially made it impossible for other investors to get involved just a couple… Read more »
rune
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Brightwell Holding obviously should not have said anything at all. I do not get why some of you are so ready to axe down every good intention shown? In recent interviews that I have seen, BH hints at a several million hundred euro bid. They have not gone into specifics concerning what kind of money they will invest AFAICT. Bottom line folks: There is no need to go on a crusade against any of the interested parties. None here have the ability to look into the future. We can’t tell if five years from now, Youngman would want to move… Read more »
hilmar
Member
4 years 7 months ago

What on earth could change GM´s decision with their IP and fear of competition?

Allan B
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Maybe they really, really like Turkish Delight?

tmra
Member
4 years 7 months ago

They do actually. President Obama -the actual boss ofGM- has listed Turkish PM Erdogan among the five world leaders who he has the closest personal ties with.
PS: http://www.todayszaman.com/newsDetail_getNewsById.action?newsId=269076

hilmar
Member
4 years 7 months ago

And who tells me whether this is not only a tactical move ? And would Turkish Delight would really help Saab ? 😉

hilmar
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Too much “would” 🙁

tmra
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Well at this interview that till have posted, Zamier Ahmed also talks about the government support which he names “moral support” for the moment. What that means, i think in terms of GM, Turkish Government can very likely to besiege their colleagues in the US. As we know US Government owns almost %40 of GM market shares.

Alex740
Member
4 years 7 months ago

The american government is not going to intervene to save Saab, I’m sorry but that’s just absolutely silly.

rune
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I find it hard to believe that the second biggest NATO member (measured in size of army) won’t be able to get some ear-time with the President. This would be a very minor favor to ask. GM are stepping on toes, quite needlessly so, and it would be in many’s interest to yank their chain a little. Cost: 0. Benefit: Lots.

Yosef
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Imagine if the Saab diesel shortcut TID would be TD such as 1.9 TD which would stand for 1.9 Turkish Delight 🙂

xelav
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Mahindra showed nothing at all! Where did they show commitment to Saab ? Did i mis something here?

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Maybe they’re not good at flapping their gums, carnival barking—–but look at their recent business record. Not bad.

davidgmills
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I suppose Saab can use a good carnival barker at the moment. It helps keeps the spirits up in those places where the lights are going very dim. But other than that, carnival barkers don’t help matters much.

OliverH
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Quote: We produce cars. How many is too early to tell, but I see that we produce and deliver. Quote: If you are considering production also in Turkey? – We’ve talked about this, of course, but it is not in our current business plan. But in the long run, if it is successful, absolutely. The markets we want to focus on are the current, so to speak. U.S., Europe, of course. They’ve not clue how much cars/ Saabs? they would build but they’ve a business plan. All the phrases looks like there’s a politician election and not a takeover of… Read more »
hilmar
Member
4 years 7 months ago

+1 !

xelav
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Dannii,you are right about that situation with Volvo, but that’s the difference between Saab passionists and Volvo drivers. And that whole selling process was mainly kept out of the press, and didn’t took so long. And only once, saab is for sale for the ? time.

scand
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Here’s the part of the puzzle I continually cant figure out; 9-3 OK , they restart that model. That will be the second time in recent years production has stopped for an extended time, and restarted. The model will then be 12 years old. Its most recent sales history (in the states at least) was dumping them for $19K, and before that, offering $8K rebates. You can say its lack of advertising, or fear of the bankrupcy, or whatever, but of the 20 000 or so 9-3’s made in the spyker era, they were not exactly flying off the lots.… Read more »
Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Rebranding other vehicles (Ssangyongs?) and offering the 9-3 as well—-and as quickly as possible, develop the PhoeniX

LG Aero
Member
4 years 7 months ago
A good overview of the realities. The 9-3 is too old to carry forth except with low pricing. The 9-5 is very nice, but generally $10,000 too high in price for the US market to even notice. Selling luxury cars requires brand value imaging which frankly means that if a car must be desired by the general public even if the mass of the public can’t possibly afford it. That requires consistent marketing, exceptional quality detailing and tightly controlled dealer network. Another leg for this stool is what a new owner would do to restore order to the market re… Read more »
rune
Member
4 years 7 months ago
The 9-3 still looks like a new car. It still drives like a modern car. What would you rather drive than a 9-3 2.0T Aero with XWD? XWD is still the most recent Haldex AWD-system on the market and Saab has their own eLSD technology mixed in with it. What car performs better in the winter for the same (or lower) price? As I keep saying, the sales were picking up steadily. I think it is more correct to base an analysis on the last months of production rather than look at the year as a whole. (both time-series are… Read more »
Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Totally agree. I posted on another comment a minute ago—-many people aren’t even familiar with Saabs or the 9-3 because the marque has been out of their price range. If you can drop the price of the 9-3, even taking away a few goodies—-it opens the door for some new buyers. The car is well equipped, drives and rides beautifully and has a luxury feel to it. At the right price, a whole new market of prospects would suddenly be interested in it. It’s an old car to us, because we follow Saab closely. For many people, it’s still an… Read more »
xelav
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Good post jason, cheers.

Turboladdade
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I am convinced that in the future, everyone will want to have a Saab. Everyone.

This is the exact attitude I want to see from a prospective Saab buyer.

3cyl
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Why? It sounds like what they have in mind is the Kleenex of cars.

tmra
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Come on, just emphatize, why would you use such a sentence? He most probably has the plan, the idea that will carry them on that future, and most importantly, he believes in the soul of Saab, what it was, what it can be and what it will be at right hands.

ivo 71
Member
4 years 7 months ago
@ tmra: Which is all good, great even. But BH also need to have enough money to realize all that and be willing to do it. And that’s the point most of the people here would like to know a teeny weeny bit more about. A billion euros (milliard outside the USA) is about the minimum required. Probably somewhat less if a deal with GM can be arrived at but, nevertheless, a very substantial investment is still needed over a reasonably long period of time. By only referring to ‘undisclosed sources of capital’ and particularly his mention in passing of… Read more »
tmra
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Very well written Ivo, actually the fairest so far. Your points are totally right, i can not deny any.
Alphan Manas said; by this passed Friday, there would have been some news about BH placing a bid, but nothing came up yet. Hopefully there might be some at the weekend. Fingers crossed.

3cyl
Member
4 years 7 months ago

It could be said that I stated my response quite “softly”.

JerseySaab
Member
4 years 7 months ago

There was a time when people oohed and ahhed over Saabs. I remember when I bought a new 900 in 1985, nearly everyone reacted to it very favorably, even enviously, with comments like “that’s a serious piece of machinery” — and this was a base model with manual crank windows and no stereo! At that time Saab was in its glory days and had a boatload of credibility with the motoring public (at least here in the U.S.); Saabs were greatly admired and desired.

This is probably the type of thing that the Brightwell comment refers to.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Honestly, Saab’s biggest challenge is in getting newcomers in for a test drive. Often, when someone sits in a Saab for the first time, and drives it, they will buy. It happened to me—-it’s happened to other people I know. As old as the 9-3 is to all of us, the vast majority of people have never been in one, never driven one or been driven in one. If a buyer could produce the 9-3, even the current version—-drop the price a little after decontenting it—-and if a strong ad campaign got younger, newer prospects into Saab showrooms, that car… Read more »
Rune Eriksson
Guest
4 years 7 months ago

Fiat stopped production of the Nuova Croma in December 2010. This car shares many parts with the Saab 9-3; the platform drive train is essentially the same. Considering that Fiat also has IP rights to this platform, couldn’t Saab’s eventual new owner take over some parts of the defunct Fiat Croma production line? As far as I know Fiat has not shipped the Croma production line to another country (yet). Just an idea to outsmart GM.

amigabuzz
Member
4 years 7 months ago
New Saab owners which ever one …please have the capital $$$ to market the cars. This what is needed in the US. You need to grab NEW customers in the 9-3 space at least in the US, the darned KIA Optima sales have taken off due to heavy and edgy Advertising http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=479v1DnMjGk&feature=related 270HP $30,000..http://www.torquenews.com/1070/kias-super-bowl-commercial-plays-gender-fantasies …..they actually show Optima drivers as if they were on banked race tracks….this goes to performance level. We really need the Born from Jets and Paul Oakenfield music in a hurry….no one was impressed with 60 years of SAAB brought us to the new 9-5 …what… Read more »
RS
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I just hate copycats. This Korean car (like the Hyundai Genesis) is a mongrel of every European brand out there -including Saab. Those clean lines and that gage cluster looks awfully familiar. Not to mention the wheels.

Nice touch btw to joke in the ‘drift ad’ about left lane drivers and right brain thinkers.
http://saabsunited.saabklubben.se/2011/03/saab-ads-recently-spotted.html

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago

The Optima is a desireable car—-inexpensive, loaded with features and preliminary feedback shows decent reliability too. But yes, the advertising is a key component. I think Saab should offer a 9-3 with less content at a lower price—-add some interesting bright colors to get attention, come in with an “Offer You Can’t Refuse” ad campaign touting the new lower price—-and they’d sell in enough numbers to make Saab viable.

saabserb
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Hope this is just another DI rumor:

http://di.se/Artiklar/2012/2/11/258919/Indisk-Saab-intressent-pa-vag-att-dra-sig-ur/

Shortly: After negotiations about licenses with GM have failed, Mahindra is seriously reconsidering buying SAAB.

TurboLamko
Member
4 years 7 months ago

DI just wants to make headlines, you might remember last week when they wrote this. Down with them and focus only on Saabsunited because their sources are the only ones that know when it’s true and when it’s not true!

Ralph
Member
4 years 7 months ago

To make a remark now about the process is so totally not in line with Mahindra’s consistent silent approach until now that this DI article seems rubbish. I expect them to come out with a statement only after they’ve signed the deal or definitively lost interest.

TurboLamko
Member
4 years 7 months ago

+1

Indeed!

TurboLamko
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Do not give up the hope, everything can sort out, just have a faith!

Griffin UP

Have a nice weekend everyone!

MeanSabean
Member
Ralph
Member
4 years 7 months ago

That’s based on a Bloomberg report that’s based on the DI report mentioned above….

MeanSabean
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Brightwell is are last hope!

900jubileum
Member
4 years 7 months ago

We have not heard anything about Mahindras plans for Saab and we should be wary of media speculations. Anyway, I have become more and more positive to Brightwell!

TurboLamko
Member
4 years 7 months ago

If Mahindra would pull out they would make an announcement!!

Just rumours from DI= Daily Id**ts

saabserb
Member
4 years 7 months ago

I don’t see why would they make an official statement of pulling out knowing that they have never officially been in. I as all people here think it is a wild rumor, but I also know a saying “where there is smoke there is fire”.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago

If it’s true that Mahindra won’t come in because of GM—-then it’s obvious that GM has handpicked Brightwell to be a lackey of sorts. The business plan will be pigeonholed by GM restrictions. Not good. Definitely not good. An underfunded and inexperienced “investor” (not car company) handpicked by the General…to fail again. Geesh.

JasonPowell
Member
4 years 7 months ago

Angelo, we can’t assume to know this of Brightwell and their ability to get funding. We are not in a position to write them off as we don’t even know what is truly happening behind the scenes. Let alone that they will more then likely have a great team of automotive people working for them. Let’s not say anything too damning about them for now.

Angelo V.
Member
4 years 7 months ago
If they are the only choice, what else do we do but move forward and hope for the best. Jason, let me ask you something: If you needed a series of surgeries for a life threatening conditions, and these were the two choices, which one would you take: 1) A surgeon says he and a group of other doctors he knows will handle it. They have access to a decent hospital, experience in similar surgeries and they really want to step in and save you. All of the doctors involved say they will work with you as long as needed,… Read more »
ivo 71
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Moreover, we have no idea how much they are able and/or willing to spend on Saab and its resurrection. For all we know they are acting for some very flush backers who prefer to remain anonymous for reasons of their own. Maybe because they think that their dress code may not appeal to the Receivers? Just a joke, this, of course but there sure IS a lot of money controlled by rather dark-haired men who prefer not to wear pants. I wonder how we would react if, say, the investment vehicle of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia or maybe the… Read more »
Ralph
Member
4 years 7 months ago

…and where there’s fabricated smoke, there’s fabricated fire.

ivo 71
Member
4 years 7 months ago
Have you noticed the final paragraph in that ‘rushlane’ (whatever that is) article? The shares of SAAB are down 16%. Interesting, isn’t it, that shares of a bankrupt company, which was 100% owned by another holding to boot, are still being traded on some share exchange. I wonder which one. I would hazard to guess it’s the one at Ulan Bator. Yeah, google that one 🙂 . On a more serious note: Any automotive ‘news source’ whose ‘experts’ don’t comprehend the difference between Saab Defense and Saab Automobile shouldn’t be taken seriously, the more so since they just rehash (well,… Read more »
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