Just a few more thoughts on BAIC and their Saab derived show cars

Beijing Automotive are showing their Saab-based vehicles at the Beijing Auto Show starting this Friday.
With that in mind, I’d like to know what you guys think of the Hautai B11? And I’m very keen to know your thoughts on the Dadi Unisonous.
Haven’t heard of them?
If that’s the case, then you find yourself in the same position as 99% of the non-Chinese population with regard to Beijing Automotive and their use of Saab vehicles as a base for their new products.
I’m seeing a reasonable amount of hand wringing in comments with people proclaiming that they feel devalued by BAIC’s efforts, etc. I’m trying hard to sympathise with you, but at the end of the day, I’m struggling.
The fact of the matter is that none of your neighbors are ever likely to know that the 9-5 or 9-3 in your driveway is going to form the base of what will likely be a very good car that’ll be sold in China.
You only know about it because you go looking for Saab news on the internet. Heck, the average punter out there in non-Saab land doesn’t even know that Saab is still alive and a large proportion of them never GM were Saab’s owners to start with. How are they going to know something like this?
“But I’ll know about it” I can hear you saying.
Well, yes.
But in regard to that, I’d encourage you to build a bridge and get over it. Your car is still every bit as good as it was yesterday, last week or last year. Whatever BAIC build will be built for the Chinese market only in the near-medium term. It’ll be a very long time and a few trade-ins before there’s any chance of a BAIC-sourced vehicle having any influence whatsoever on your vehicle’s value.
This deal is worth a bucketload of money to Saab in both cash and ongoing consultancies. It’s a great deal; one that makes quite a bit out of nothing. It’s quite possibly one of the main reasons Saab was still in a position to be sold earlier this year.
These vehicles we’ve seen are show cars that were made in a hurry. They will change before they’re made for real and that won’t be for some time, anyway. In fact, BAIC are still building the factory that’ll make these cars and it won’t come online until 2011. The new 9-5 will be well and truly bedded in by then and a new 9-3 will be very close.
So please….. chill.
Your street isn’t going to fill up with Chinese imitations of your car. Your car is still as great as it’s always been. And the deal is helping Saab to stick around and bring us all-new cars.

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