The Swedish financial newspaper Dagens Industri (the Daily Industry) have today posted two positive and interesting articles on the car company from Trollhättan now known as Nevs. Considering how Saab was treated by Swedish media many times, this is really nice to see.
The first article “Planen som ska få Nevs på rull” (the plan that will get Nevs rolling) starts out explaining that the Saab branding on the Stallbacka plant is gone and the production has stopped, with another negative fiscal year to be expected for Nevs.
DI asks “how can Nevs employ 900 people and keep growing?”.
Today Nevs has 900 employees in Trollhättan, with 230 consultants as well. They’re still recruiting more people, mainly engineers within electronics and software. This year the personell cost is expected to reach 500 million SEK ($56 million USD) and it’s all currently funded by the owners of Nevs.
The new factory in Tianjin, China will be ready next year. In order to get the necessary license for EV car production in China, it will be a complete car plant. This factory will produce the Nevs 9-3, based on the Saab NG9-3. The Stallbacka plant will support the Chinese factory and the next generation of Nevs EV cars for Europe will be built in Trollhättan.
Nevs does have some funding of their own, with the development of the new Turkish car and the contract for 150 000 cars and 100 000 vehicles with Panda New Energy in China. The vehicles are electric vans that will be delivered through the New Long Mas plant in Fujian, China, where Nevs are part owners.
The article goes on explaining how Nevs are working on a new and modular platform (Phoenix 3.0) for their next generation of EV cars. Nevs are attracting competent people, not only from the car industry.
Christian Bromander, head of electric and mechanical architecture at Nevs, with 25 years of experience from the car industry, says “Nevs are thinking outside of the box, with people from outside of the industry we are challenged to think in new ways.”.
Michèl Annink, with a background from Salesforce, Microsoft and Toshiba, says “Nevs is not a traditional car producer. I don’t think about the fact that we don’t produce cars right now. We are currently developing virtual services.”.
This article finishes off stating 2020 as the year when the next generation of NEVS EV cars will be released. By then the traditional car producers will have a number of EV cars out as well. In contrast to this, Nevs CEO Mattias Bergman says “With all due respect to their resources, they can’t focus on EV cars only. We have knowledge of the past, but we aren’t stuck there.”.
The second article from Dagens Industri “Utvecklar bil för Turkiet” (developing a car for Turkey) covers the development of the new Turkish car by Nevs. Frank Smit is responsible for this project and he has been working with Saab since 2002, with a previous past from Nissan, Mitsubishi and Hyundai.
Frank Smit is calm, even though not everything always goes according to plan. 140 employees at Nevs in Trollhättan are working on the Turkish car, with 40 people from Tübitak, the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey. The car is supposed to “breath and feel Turkish”, so it’s important to work with people who know this country.
The Turkish 9-3 will also be an EV car, based on Saab NG9-3. It will probably be produced in Turkey. These cars will primarily be company cars and used in car-sharing services, which means that they will be in use more than the average (private) car. This is a challenge, when it comes to the battery range and pricing of the cars. The range of the Nevs 9-3 is at least 300 km (186 US miles).
Finishing this off, these two articles doesn’t really add anything new but they do have a positive vibe about Nevs. It’s nice to see that, even though they’re not actually producing cars, they’re still busy working and employing more than 900 people in Trollhättan.
I personally appreciate that Nevs are thinking in new ways, like no other car company. This is exactly what Saab did. Saab was the quirky, special and unique car company from Trollhättan. Let’s not forget that.