It’s going to be great to see the new vehicle in the metal and check out what people are going to be buying next year. The Saab 9-3 ePower will be there as well.
I’ll get a Q&A post up on site closer to departure.
Speaking of the US, Mike Colleran’s done a quick interview with an industry magazine over there, mainly speaking about dealership and distribution.
This is the only thing that’ll probably be news to the regular Saab news follower:
What changes, if any, are planned for Saab’s parts distribution network, especially relating to the availability of parts to the American aftermarket and independent repairers?
We only distribute parts directly to Saab dealers who in turn can resell to the independent distributors and repair shops in the U.S. We distribute parts to all dealers in the U.S. from our PDC (Parts Distribution Center) in Allentown, Pa. Our availability of parts has improved significantly since the Spyker acquisition from a low point of 88 percent in March to a current average of 94 percent.
Here’s a question for you – who or where was the first Saab dealer?
A newspaper in Växjö thinks a local might provide the answer. Niclas L has provided a translation:
Tingsryds Auto Workshop is a traditional family business which next year celebrates its 75th anniversary. The company has sold Saab since the 1950s, which means that it is probably the world’s oldest Saab dealer.
– I usually jokingly say that I was born in a Saab, the owner Sven-Olof Carlsson says.
Tingsryds Auto Workshop is today run by the brothers Sven-Olof and Jonas Carlson. They have sold Saab for 60 years, Opel in 20 years and the latest brand Chevrolet has been selling for 4 years. With good service you have a loyal group of customers who always come back.
– Good service always pays in the long run, Sven-Olof says.
Swedish quality brand
In addition to Tingsryd the company has also been present in Karlshamn for 19 years.
– In total, we currently have 38 employees in the company.
That Saab is close to Sven-Olof’s heart, there is no doubt about. The family business began selling Saab in the early 50th century when Sven-Olof grew up and the car brand has followed him through life since then. After several turbulent years the future looks bright again for Saab.
– It’s very positive. The sale is back at the same levels as before the crisis.
What is it that makes Saab such a great car?
– It is a Swedish, safe quality brand.
Sven-Olof also highlights Opel of course.
– Opel has a very wide range from Opel Corsa to the new Opel Insignia. Opel has always had cars with very low cost of ownership. Recently we had premiered on a brand new Opel Meriva.
DAVID FÄRDIGH, MAGAZINET
I’ve always heard the name Philipsons mentioned in relation to Saab’s early days but I’m not sure how those early dealership arrangements worked.
My suspicion is that the reporter is claiming seniority for this dealership because of its age, and because it makes a nice story. And of course, he may be right, too.