Australian Saab distribution – Ateco says ‘No’

I’ve received an advance snippet, apparently from tomorrow’s Carsguide as it will appear in the Melbourne newspaper, the Herald-Sun.
It’s a scan, which I’ve had to enlarge and treat for color, so it may be a little fuzzy.
What it says (for those can’t be bothered) is that one of Australia’s larger automotive importing agencies, Ateco, has apparently turned down the opportunity to distribute Saab down under, saying the agency is almost worthless.
He then has a crack at Hobart, where I live, but I’ll leave that along for now…..
I’ve heard enough complaints about Ateco to not be too fussed by this. They’re apparently quite selective with their model mixes, meaning we could miss out on some vehicles all together.
Still, it leaves Saab in Australia languishing in the legacy that GM created for it here. Whilst they had some absolutely fantastic people in recent times, the burdened those people with failed ventures in Hummer and Cadillac, soaking up resources that used to be used (pretty well) for Saab’s promotion.
The last 12 months, like the rest of the world, saw Saab decimated here. I’ve heard informally that Saab sold just one new vehicle here in Oz in the first quarter but I don’t have access to the official stats to back it up.
We talked about Australian distribution a little while ago, based on a story in Go Auto that had Ateco as the leading contender.
The other two contenders were companies named Inchcape and Sime Darby, neither of whom Go Auto saw as prime candidates for taking on a Saab franchise.
I hope they can work something soon. Better still, I hope they can make a brave decision and do the job in-house. It can’t take that much in terms of resources, can it?
OK, candidate for naive statement of the year, there, but still…..
Thanks to You-know-how-you-are for the advance clipping.

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