Saab to introduce modular R&D and engineering systems similar to Scania

A little more information is trickling out about the reorganisation of Saab’s engineering resources.

This was first announced last month and yesterday we heard that staff are already being redeployed, with a number close to retirement taking severance packages.

Today, a newpapers called tells a little more, and the story leans heavily on one of Saab’s former siblings – Scania.

The Googletrans

The quest for profitability has intensified at Saab Automobile in Trollhättan. Now the company is investing everything into a new system – and the key figure is a real R & D legend.

People Dagens Industri have met the men behind Saab’s new venture. The car manufacturer is now introducing Scania’s world famous modular system to which the magazine notes, “reduce costs, minimize development time and give customers more [vehicle varations]”.

All to create a profit-making enterprises, despite small volumes.

Truck legend Hasse Johansson, who after 10 years as development manager for Scania retired in 2010, is now working with Saab’s Mats Fägerhag to install new practices and systems at Saab in Trollhattan.

It Spykerägda company is left alone in the car world to work in this way.

“Saab Automobile can lower their development costs by half, and halve the product development cycle times,” said 60-year-old Johansson told the newspaper.

During his time at Scania, Hasse led the development of Scania’s production system, which has become a world leader in the industry. If work at Saab succeeds, the costs of developing a new model reduced from 3-4 to 1.5-2 billion dollars. Much of the production of prototypes will disappear as more and more of the development is done using computer simulation and virtual tools.

“It is more risky than working with prototypes, but we have become quite good at it,” said Mats Fägerhag to DI.

Work is conducted in Saab’s most secret facilities. Fägerhag see no risk at all of Saab Automobile is going to get stuck in an “excessive fixation technology” which lead to increased costs.

“No, I do not think. We will create the same balance between technology and economy Scania,” he says in the interview.

11 thoughts on “Saab to introduce modular R&D and engineering systems similar to Scania”

  1. Very refreshing news, something you hope that is going on behind the scenes but then it’s always nice to get confirmation.

  2. Scania is the most profitable truck manufacturer in the world, so it is a smart move to try and copy their strategies.

    • Yes, he worked for SEM and later founded Mecel with Jan Nytomt. With Saab they developed the Direct Ignition system.

  3. I get the impression that you have to be a genius to work for Saab. It is simple incredible how many brilliant ideas come out of Trollhättan since they are free to do what they are able to.

  4. It is a clear step away from the big manufacturer structures, where 2 engineers work on the same part but do not interact because every one is working on a different car-line.

    Saab is now small and has to work different, the old structures are not valid any more.

  5. It’s making me very happy to see all the progress going on at Saab. A year after Saab became independent, they already proved to listen to customers, to make a leaner and meaner organisation and to gain a better press-record. Most of the stuff the press is writing about Saab now is positive, while less then a few months ago it was mainly negative.

    Continue the good work!

  6. Thank you Edis for the information about Hasse Johansson.
    He actally was one of them behind The Saab Trionic Ignition system.
    Great, I am going to be more and more confident about Saab`s future!

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