In march 2011 SWAN Saab presented themselves on the Geneva Motor Show as a new company with lots of ideas and new pieces of technology that they wanted to implement in their future cars. For those nostalgic among us, you can review the press conference here.
Jason Castriota showed with the PhoeniX concept car, where the post GM Saab design was heading to. Now, two years later, SaabsUnited is bringing to you the design of the first offspring of that design language. This car will never hit the road, but from the comments on this side on designs that still do not show the final product, my impression is that this car had the potential to help Saab get back on its foot.
One of the technology pieces that would have put Saab back ahead of other companies is the eAAM electric rear axle. From their presentation on the Geneva Motor Show we learned that the Chinese Qoros will be using it but not on its full potential, as we learned that Qoros will not implement torque vectoring in its car. I don’t like the idea of Audi telling the world in 2014 or 2015 that their eQuattro system is the first electric rear axle with torque vectoring, as we know that eAAM could have been today ready for production.
The other piece of technology that Saab demonstrated at the Geneva Motor Show was the IQon infotainment system.
IQon was an Android based infotainment system. It was like the flexibility of a modern Smartphone or tablet combined with the car integration of a legacy infotainment system. Being this such a promising system, what happened to it after the Saab bankruptcy?
Swedspot was founded in February 2012 by 6 guys that worked at Saab Automobile on the IQon system. And since then they’ve been working on the system.
According to a recent interview from Ttela.se with Helen Falkås, business developer and founder of Swedspot, they have contacts with both suppliers and car companies. And TTela adds that they had seen the names of NEVS and Volvo on a whiteboard, and yes they also had contacts to Qoros.
IQon is not dead, but it will not be called IQon anymore, and we will se it or parts of it in some brands in the next car generation (in 3-4 years).
We have seen that in march 2011 SAAB presented what the future of Saab could have been. The creators of that have managed to continue their visions in a self-founded company, and now we have proof, that the car industry have interest in those vision.
This shows us, that Saab people have never been a company man, and where able to do more in a small organisation rather than on a global corporation like GM.
I wish all those small companies that have been created in Trollhättan in the last year all of the luck, and wish that part of this knowledge and quirkiness finds its way back to the Saab cars of the future.