Automotive News interview US Saab boss Mike Colleran

Automotive News have conducted a pretty good interview with Mike Colleran, head of Saab Cars North America.

Some of his answers raise good questions.

What else is Saab doing to rebuild the business?
……you have to do some other things. You’ve got to instill confidence in the consumers that they can buy these cars and not be concerned about buying the cars.

That raises the question as to what the warranty period is going to be for the new Saab 9-5, and the rest of the range, too.

We’ve previously heard Victor Muller say that their warranty costs so far are less than anticipated. I’m not suggesting they invite tragedy upon their own heads, but if those costs are down for good reason, then an attractive warranty on new Saabs will go a long way. If you’ve been watching the broader automotive market then you’ve seen what a good warranty (along with good product) has done for Hyundai in recent years.

In terms of image, what else has to be fixed?
Awareness that we are here. I think there are a number of consumers who have the perception that Saab is gone.

That makes me wonder what we can do, as an enthusiast community, to help. Maybe some sort of viral video contest? All in good taste, of course. Maybe a make-your-own-print-ad campaign?

I’ve got my hands full writing all this stuff, but my ears are open to ideas I can co-ordinate.

Are all Saab dealers using GMAC?
No. GMAC is our preferred partner. I would say roughly three quarters of the dealers use GMAC for wholesale. And then on the retail side, dealers are free to choose whomever they want.

For that retail transaction, go find the absolute best lease deal you can.

It’s very good reading. There’s some good stuff there about sales targets and currency movements. In short, things are looking positive.

Thanks to Vince for the link.

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