Something is going on in Austria

OK, Austria is not a big market for SAAB. In the years before 2006 Saab sold only about 450-500 cars per year.

Nevertheless Austria is showing the sales figures till the 20th of January, and I thought I could be interesting to see how Saab is performing, at least in Austria.

Let’s look at the previous Years.
Those are the total January Saab sales

– 2004 : 32
– 2005 : 32
– 2006 : 39
– 2007 : 16
– 2008 : 22
– 2009 : 10
– 2010 : 00

And in the first 20 day of 2011, Saab has already sold 16 cars in Austria.

I know that some of you will say that those numbers don’t say nothing, but 16 is also in-line with the last months of 2010, which means Saab is continuing in 2011 at the same level as at the end of 2010.

25 thoughts on “Something is going on in Austria”

  1. Verily interesting. Are you sure that this doesn’t simply mean that the dealership has improved their availability?

    Maybe this is a Muller & Jonsson effect…

  2. Well, at least it shows that customer confidence is returning slowly.

    Don’t have the numbers for Germany but it feels like Austria does relatively better now compared to the years before the sales drama.

    Anyway, ecouraging to see that sales numbers are slowly recovering.

  3. Sales numbers were rising. 16 saabs is more than saab sold in the first quarter 2010
    also this are registration numbers – and the january could be over 20.
    We also see in the moment a billboard campaign and some ads in newspapers. But the whole effort will be recognizable in two or three months -as the normal buyer orders a car

    • May you be able to explain if there is any incentive like low CO-numbers for lower tax on the cars in Austria? I mean, can the TTiD 9-3 be one extra factor to count on??

        • no TTiD effect – our co2 tax system is very silly. you have to pay more only 1 time ,when you buy the car. and the co numbers are higher than the 119 – you can say its VW-audi-bmw friendly.

          it would be fine if we also have the system with 119 or E85 .

          • I would not tie the TTiD effect to the CO2 numbers. Along with it come extremely low fuel consumption numbers at great power so that may attract buyers.

    • Although many Austrians are very patriotic, I don’t think there is any kind of negative attitude towards the brand because of taking away the vert production from Magna in Graz.
      I think SAAB has successively lost almost all of its presence in Austria. There is only a handful of dealers and there are only very few SAABs of the current model upline to be seen in the streets.
      I’ve seen the NG 9-5 in the dealership, but not once anywhere “in the wild”. Same goes true for the 9-3X, which is in many way a car perfectly suited for Austria’s Alpine driving conditions.
      What people see are BMWs, VWs, Mercedes and – Audis, Audis, Audis.
      But I do hope the people who buy SAABs now show them around a lot. People need to see the brand’s alive – and kicking!
      P.S.: At least, we see lots of billboard advertising now. I rejoice every time I drive by one of those red 9-3s.

      • At least I see a 9-3x in white every time i went to work and i have seen 2 9-5s (no dealer cars) in wild on my everyday way to work. but i think it´s a dealer problem to in austria.

    • I think the convertible production in graz had some influence. if you take the registrations from the years 2004-2008 you will see that there are real conv months in spring. we have seen months with over 50 cars sold – followed by normal months with 20 registrations.

      I also think there is a convertible factor in sales for saab in whole europe. you buy a convertible to register in spring so that you have your CV year (summer).
      in 2010 due to the problems in stock and production convertible sales must have been very very low. we have january now it´ts time to order or buy a convertible – so i think this has an effect on saab sales

  4. Even when there was CV production in Graz, those #s were lame. And whats up with Germany? The engines and lots of parts are made there. Hard to believe VW/Audi, BMW & MB have them so….brain-washed? And why are 90% of the cars black?

    • Seriously, Germans love dark colors and black is about the most popular Saab color in the USA. Personally it is my last choice. Give me white or red and yellow for a convertible.

    • Seriously, Germans love dark colors and black is about the most popular Saab color in the USA. Personally it is my last choice. Give me white or red and yellow for a convertible.

    • Saab in Germany suffers and will probably suffer some years due to the connection to Opel.

      In all reports about the new 9-5, even in the positive ones, you can read sentences like “the 9-5 is based on the Opel Ingignia”, “the motor is from the Opel Insignia”, “this is a larger Opel Insignia”, etc, pp.

      German car press loves Audi, BMW, Mercedes, VW and even Skoda or Ford. Very few journos will admit that the 9-5 plays in the same league as the German big three.

      My newest “hobby” is to count the days between the release of the new 9-5 in Germany and the moment I will see the first one in Munich (in the past, a Saab-town)….still waiting….

  5. Maybe it´s because of the new 9-5 and/or because there will be a new tax regulation at beginning of march that makes cars with more than 160gCO2/km much more expensive. You need to registrate your car until that date otherwise you have to pay more taxes.
    This is part of the “Budgetbegleitgesetz 2011” in detail: “Artikel 75
    Änderung des Normverbrauchsabgabegesetzes 1991” –>

    • My thoughts first were the same – but as you said nova changes begin at 160 and at that level you pay more . but this level is so set that the favourite german carmakers can sell their cashcows.

      but if you take chrysler sales for example (56 until 20 of january) it´s no time to say hurra. and ovlov has 306 registrations, bmw 928.

      i think they have to double or tripple the dealerships. most dealership locations were far away from the “car centers” dealers have to be seen
      for ex. ovlov has 53 partners – saab 18 in styria (1.2 mill pop) you have only one official dealer. and this dealer is located far away from the typical car dealer places – with the saab showroom in the backyard and the lexus toyota showroom in front.
      of course you have your traditional buyers but you can´t reach new ones or raise your image

      • I think the best ad is new SAABs on road – they must be seen. and they need active dealerships with saabs in front (which can be seen). personally working as an architect with special reference in shopping architecture – you can make a test. take a car and drive through austria – i think you will not see or recognize a saab dealership – but you see vw,bmw,ovlov,opel…
        not enthusiasts need confidence in the brand – and the best confidence they have is you give them dealers they see,they can reach where they can go with a problem.

        saab isn´t existent in many minds because the haven´t seen a dealer in their region. wide the dealerbody and you will sell.
        another aspect would be to invest into dealerships – to become a premium level. even renault-dacia dealerships have more premium level than most of the saab dealerships in austria

  6. At least there will be sold 17 SAABs in Austria this year.

    Can’t wait to order the 9-5 SC Turbo4 XWD Aut with Hirsch. Black out- and inside. Really can’t wait 😉

    And am lucky to be at Geneve Motor Show prior to the public opening and may be able to send first detail pics of the SC.

  7. I think it is very positive and shows that market confidence is slowly growing. There is a long way to go though but considering that only 102 Saabs were sold during 2010 this is surely very promising.

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