I will do my best to have a flow to this post as there is a lot going through my head. I will start with Hirsch and what this means to the dealer body and what some dealers have already started doing. Hirsch offers dealers something very attractive that not all major car manufacturers offer or at least not to this extent. With Hirsch, we have the opportunity to sell something other than just the car. We can sell dash kits, performance exhaust systems, body kits, wheels and performance upgrades that increase horsepower by 30 hp. This can all be done in house without having to send a customer elsewhere and provides the dealer with a great opportunity to make a little money but more importantly, satisfy that customer want or need for something different. When I posted about Hirsch finally being available for the Canadian market, people again voiced there concerns about price differences between USA and Canada and I do believe from the performance side of things that our pricing is the same or very close. When you take a new or pre-owned Saab and add even $2000 worth of Hirsch product, you really don’t affect a finance payment by much. It may be a total of $40 per month on a 60 month term. Watch out, here comes the salesman side of me. You can break that down and it’s a little more than $1 per day to have some style and horsepower.
Take a look at what our friends at Just Saab have done with a 2011 Saab 9-5 below. Here’s a dealer that is putting they’re best foot forward and have loaded up a 9-5 with the exhaust package, the leather instrument plate, center console trim, glove box trim and alloy pedals. This car of coarse has a lot more than $2000 worth of Hirsch product on it, but they are trying to showcase some of what you can get.
For someone like myself, I could see a simple upgrade of performance and the 3-piece grill with Hirsch logo for the 9-3. If all my Canadian pricing is right, which I would have to think it is as it came from Saab, those items should run me about $1806.71 before taxes and labor. So my number of $2000 is justified and the 9-3 would be so much more than stock, not that there is anything wrong with stock.
My point about the dealer and the opportunity for dealers to make some money is nothing to do with greed. The dealers have had it very rough for the last couple of years and any chance that they can have to make a little money and I do mean a little money, is very welcomed. Most dealers have had to trim costs in different areas or change there business plans, and these are the lucky ones. We have lost a lot of dealers through all of this and the ones that have survived are leaner but stronger than ever before. We all share a common goal, from the dealer to the customer and fan of Saab, we all want to see Saab survive and we all need to be a part of promoting this great brand. As I said in my previous post about Hirsch, your dealer doesn’t need to be an authorized Hirsch dealer to order you parts, so go and see them if you want to know about certain items and pricing.
Finally Saab. Saab has been kicked around for quite some time now and none of us seem to know where this will end. Saab up until six months ago was making some of the most exciting vehicles on the road in my opinion with some of the most loyal fans around. My thoughts on Saab at this moment are simply that if this all gets sorted out, we are poised to be like no other company out there. With the introduction of Hirsch to the North American dealer body, the 9-4X, 9-5 Sport Combi and new 9-3 when it comes, we have the product to succeed. The other thing we have and can not be understated is we have SaabsUnited which is unlike any other fan based blog/site out there. There are a lot of changes coming to SaabsUnited that will make the Saab owner/fan experience that much more than it already is. Since being asked to join the SaabsUnited team, I feel like I have friends around the world and with the additions coming to SU shortly, my thought is that this feeling that I have will be multiplied and we will all feel that much more connected with each other. I said to another dealer half joking on a facebook post that we should start a new “I believe” campaign for Saab and I think it’s kind of fitting because with the people, the product and the passion, I truly believe that Saab has what it takes to rise from the ashes once again.