Helping the Saab Museum

I’m proud of the contribution that Saabs United has made to the company over the years. I’m proud to have been a part of establishing that tradition and very pleased to see it carry on in the hands of Tim, Till, the rest of the SU team and the readership.

Every member of the SU community has a part to play in keeping the spirit of this company alive. Of course, our hope is that the administrators find a suitable buyer to keep the company itself alive. It’s important not just as a matter continuing a heritage that we’re all proud of, but also in continuing to provide an automotive alternative that we all love. I’ve lost count of the number of people who have written to me saying they just can’t imagine buying another type of car. For some of us – for better or for worse – there are few, if any, viable alternatives to Saab when it comes to interesting and engaging motoring.

Saabs United is currently running what I think is a pretty important fund-raiser to purchase and preserve the last Saab 9-3 in the Saab Museum. For sixty-plus years, prominent cars from Saab’s history have rolled off the production line and into the Saab Museum. I think we can all agree that there has been no more critical a period in the company’s history than the bankruptcy of December 19. For a Saab fan, it’s almost essential that the final car from this period in the company’s history be preserved in the Saab Museum, like the notable cars that went before it.

This fund raiser is unprecedented in Saab circles for its ambition, scope and the importance of its mission. We can’t save the company itself as a one-off effort (that will require consistent sales for a re-started Saab) but I believe that we can – and should – do this.

Consequently, I just want to add my voice to the appeal. If you’ve contributed to this fund already, then thanks very much. If you’re planning to contribute, I’d urge you to let Tim or Till know your commitment and the timing of it. If you’re still on the fence, I’d appeal to you to consider what you can give.

If you’ve never visited the Saab Museum, I can assure you that it’s well worth the time and trouble it might cost you to get there. It’s a wondrous place for a Saab fan, a reminder of everything this company has achieved, much of it against the odds over a number of decades. It’ll remind you as to what we all gave so much of our time for and make you appreciate the drive home even more. That building houses some of the most wonderful memories of my life and some great friends, too.

Imagine visiting there and knowing that you contributed to one of it’s more significant exhibits.

Please click here to make your contribution and help preserve the last Saab 9-3.


I’d like to raise another point while I’m here. In fairness, I should have discussed this with Peter Backstrom before posting as it might be a non-issue, but I’ll put it out there anyway.

Is there some scheme, some way that we Saab enthusiasts can contribute regularly to the upkeep of the museum? A trust or a friends-of-the-museum type setup? I know that I’d be willing to contribute to such a trust with a regular annual contribution and I’m sure that others would, too.

IntSaab 2012 is coming up soon. It would be a great opportunity to promote such an arrangement and get clubs involved in preserving something that is surely in their interests to keep alive, and strong.

If something is already established, that’s great. If not, I hope it’s something the new owners of the museum would consider. The Saab Museum has been saved once already. I hope it’s never in a position where it has to be saved again.

7 thoughts on “Helping the Saab Museum”

  1. Thank you Swade, your help means a lot!

    I’m sorry about not updating the contributors list yet, but I have had a super-busy weekend building a new parking-lot for my car. I promise to update the list in a couple of hours!

    • Hey Tim!
      You have done a great job with the “save the last 9-3” campain. (and all effort you put into running this site for that matters), but I also must say its essential to update the campain page often so the contributers can se that the money they put in make a diffrence.
      As you said earlier, the most and largest amount of money came in the first 24h, so I think just leave it for 48h with no updates might cost us some good cash. Most people feels some reluctans about internet payments, therefore its important that the campain feels alive and kickin..
      Now go back to you parking lot and pimp it up nicely to same high standards as the 9-5 you will put there 🙂

  2. I completely support was Swade has said here, and indeed have previously suggested something similar in one of my past posts.

    The detail is something that would need to be worked out to fit with the museum’s new legal structure and Swedish charity law, but it is highly, highly desirable for the museum to set up and then heavily publicise – SU, the Saab Parts Dealer Network? – an easy international arrangement enabling individuals, clubs and even Saab-related businesses to make charitable donations to it. TimR has shown how straightforward this can be using PayPal (for the “last 9-3” Appeal): can SU not help the museum now put something similar in place to help with its running costs?

    • Agree;that is needed, or at least would be good, to have such a system in place. The only easy way the museum could get regular contributions from people that care but are not in a position to visit the museum on a regular basis.

    • Hi Bob,

      Regarding the vehicle purchase….. I hadn’t seen your previous comments in an earlier post prior to writing this but a friend of mine has since pointed them out. I agree with you that there needs to be a level of transparency here just so that no-one questions the good-faith nature of the effort. Personally speaking, I have no qualms about Tim’s integrity in this transaction, but just as auditors (my profession) need to be seen to be independent (rather than just be independent), this transaction needs to be obviously transparent and I think you raised some great points about that.

      It’d be great if the museum were to come on board with the transaction in a public way and agree with Tim/SU on the terms under which it’s carried out. As mentioned, I’ve got complete faith in what’s proposed, but it needs to be more than right – it needs to be seen to be right in the eyes of anyone who cares to view it.

      • Swade

        Thanks for your comments, and good to see you on here. I have absolutely no doubt about the 100% good intentions and integrity of everything that TimR is suggesting, but I have too much professional knowledge about how these things ought to be done to say nothing. My personal experiences of the Saab Museum are limited to two memorable visits with my son in 2010, but I have had fairly extensive experience in museum consultancy and organisational analysis, and some of the inbuilt flaws in the “old” museum set-up are very plain to the knowing eye. I’m just keen that as things now move forward they are done right. Whether that be to tie the collections up in a Trust that merely loans them to the operating organisation (a common UK model), or to see the museum establish a proper, international, mechanism for charitable giving by saps like us, it all comes down to the same thing. There are lessons to be learned and new practices to be implemented, whether that be in the future management of Saab, or of the museum that preserves its heritage.

        Keep writing, please!

  3. Any information on the last Saab to be assembled by the factory? There was a SU story about some Saabs shipped to Taiwan a few months ago. They were one of the last ones to be built at the factory.

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