January is not a good time for our car hobby. Too cold, too dark, and vehicles with seasonal license plates may not be moved anyway. With our “Saab Hangar” project, Achim and I are behind schedule. In contrast to a major public project in the Berlin-Brandenburg area, the delay in our fully privately financed project is limited to just two months.
After we have freed the hangar of old office and warehouse fixtures, the dismantling is complete and finally there is space for our Swedish cars. The time has come next weekend. Three of our four 9000ers will leave their provisional locations and move in as the first residents. Saab 9000 number 4 will complete the gang of four from next winter, and the old Swedes will then have a permanent home for the cold season. So that it doesn't get too monotonous, the 9000s will get additional company in March through our new Saab project, which runs under the code name "Silver Aero". More on that soon.
In Sweden, Saab was very present in the media at the beginning of the year. No wonder, because the messages struck like a bomb. The subject of Saab is still highly emotional in Sweden, and the press is as divided as the community. The comments of the most important newspapers about Saab:
The joyful ...
Antligen! Finally, so wrote Svenska Dagbladet in response to the press reports from Trollhättan and China. The period of uncertainty is coming to an end, the investment in China and the entry of a municipal shareholder are welcomed. It is, no wonder, Jonas Fröberg, who writes like this. Fröberg, the “Kampen om Saab” car, is a fan of the brand.
At the same time, he is worried about the Trollhättan location, and we share the opinion that “Made in Trollhättan” has no alternative.
The caustic ...
It commemorates Victor Muller, Dagens Industri wrote about the announcements from Trollhättan. The announcement to build 8.000 vehicles this year, then 2014 already 60.000, was considered with caustic comments. Dagens Industri has always been a Saab skeptic, no matter who owns the brand. Traditionally, the other manufacturer from Gothenburg has historical ties, and this is reflected in the style of writing.
The fact that Volvo belongs to 50% Chinese municipalities does not matter to DI. At Saab, the viewpoint is different, and just like Muller back then, it's all about the new owners.
The cautious ...
The local newspaper in Trollhättan is having a hard time. It is in the interest of the region that the chimneys smoke again in the Stallbacka, at the same time you can feel that the big decisions of the future will not be made in Sweden. TTELA is not as close as it used to be when you picked up the phone in the Stallbacka to call the editorial office. That is why one gives the cautious what one can recognize in clearly formulated subtleties.
The cars that may come off the production line from week 34 onwards are no longer talking about Saabs, but rather vehicles that carry the Saab logo. It remains to be proven whether one will build “real” Saabs in the future. You can tell that the Chinese owners have not yet arrived in Trollhättan. Things take time.
The blogger ...
Last week one reader wrote "... that Tom will now take the G-word out of the drawer". That's the way it is. We shouldn't start expecting breaking news every week now.
I feel like so many fans too. I hear the announcements and I'm happy. At the same time, I am a skeptic. I only believe in the story when the first Saab leaves production. I do not care if it's the week 34, 36 or 40. The main thing, it happens!
Until then we should be patient. Here it is again, the G-word. It will also accompany us to 2013.