SAAB press. NEVS and the impoverished nobility.

Last week, Jonas Froberg in his column at Svenska Dagbladet once again thought about the future of Saab. He is Saab fan but has a realistic view of Trollhättan. The message from the 18. September, the day on which NEVS produced the first car, he understands quite clearly. Saab is on the way again.

Saab 9-3 in the Griffin Trim on the factory premises
Saab 9-3 in the Griffin Trim on the factory premises

The location is ambitious. Saab 2.0 is planning a plant in China, funded by a joint venture owned by 50% NEVS and 50% of Qingdao. And Saab plans the comeback of the 9-3 with conventional propulsion, the construction of an electric car and the construction of the 9-3 successor on the Phoenix platform. All this, says Fröberg, requires a lot of investment.

And then there is the CEO, who has been wanted for a long time but not found. Mathias Bergman is now acting CEO - a man who is actually a PR consultant. Fröberg then asks a few simple questions in his article and comes up with an amazingly simple answer.

But first the questions. How does NEVS want to sell a (hopelessly) obsolete car? How do you want to get a positive cash flow? The answer, at best: Chinese money.

Or, quite strikingly expressed: money marries impoverished nobility. Presumably Fröberg is right and I agree with him. Except for the thing with the outdated car. I do not think so. Realistically, Saab is a long-term investment for the Chinese. The fact that NEVS does not expect a positive cash flow internally in the next few years has already leaked out in the past. What speaks for the sense of reality of investors.

Saab is not an isolated case, everything speaks for a state-controlled swarming towards the auto industry. The change in the automotive landscape in Europe speaks for itself. Volvo owner Li Shufu paid for his Gothenburg investment with money from state banks. Dong Feng - the company is developing in Trollhättan and wants to join the PSA Group - is semi-public. BAIC, the group acquired Saab licenses in 2009 and wanted to take over the entire brand from Victor Muller in the following year, is state-owned. At NEVS, too, the money will not only come from Kai Johan Jiang. Without state funds, which flow in whatever way, the development of the brand would not be financed for him either.

Saab is impoverished nobility. A traditional brand that has slipped with great pride towards destruction. Money meets big names, it could become a success story. If the NEVS Investment has the goodwill of politics, and one can assume that much is possible in the future. The new edition of the Saab 9-3 is then just a finger exercise to get the life cycle of the brand back on track. New cars for dealers, demonstration cars, leasing, used and year-old cars. A functioning supplier base, a breathing factory. The foundation to write a success story.

Presumably we will be able to see the new version of the 9-3 this year. Optically and technically revised. In the German press one will write again of an old car, and a certain professor will certify Saab no future chances. That there is a long-term plan behind it and that one could think ahead in Trollhättan is not considered. But the real test for NEVS is still missing.

Because only the following models on the Phoenix platform will show whether NEVS can build cars that bear the name Saab rightly. Swedish engineering meets Chinese money. That could work. Qoros is now showing how European knowledge with Chinese production and money throws a considerable debut on the market. But NEVS has a huge advantage. Qoros is the new beginning with a white sheet of paper. Saab is automotive history, rich in legends. The name Saab sounds better than any newcomer's art name. At least in this area old nobility beats the novice today. Times are getting more exciting again!

Text: tom@saabblog.net

Image: saabblog.net

7 thoughts on "SAAB press. NEVS and the impoverished nobility."

  • blank

    Great contribution, factually precise analysis of the current situation. Entirely my opinion.

  • blank

    Great article !!!

    I don't see the 9-3 as an old car. It fools some new people.

    Said Prof. is surely sponsored by the German auto lobby.

    Let's hope for the best for SAAB.

    Ulrich

  • blank

    Until now, it has always been the turn of the day that NEVS was only allowed to produce vehicles in Sweden with the obligation to continue the brand name SAAB.

    I still assume this obligation and therefore do not see any risk that production will only take place in China - because as Tom correctly explained, the positive prospects are always linked to a well-known brand name, which of course also stands for good quality. Qoros, for example, will take many years to come even close to such conditions - even LEXUS is still a brand for many drivers today that cannot be properly classified.

  • blank

    That would be pretty sad if NEVS would focus on China. That would be lost potential !!

  • blank

    But the question is, if in the factory in China not completely all vehicles are built and in Sweden only
    Development is because until now I have the impression that NEVS has no interest in the European car market
    I would be happy if my impression is wrong, but NEVS does not do anything about the name
    To experience SAAB positively in Europe

  • blank

    Great article for the start in the Monday! The perspective is right and it stays exciting. Interesting that more and more SAAB drivers also have a Goteborg in the garage.

  • blank

    Great contribution-thank you very much !. I can't “sign” that the Saab 9-3 is an outdated car. My wife's Saab 9-3 TID is very reliable and is in no way inferior to my V70 in technical matters.
    Certainly some technical gimicks fail to compete with the competition, but then they can't break either ...
    Would be nice to get a larger choice of models, because the 9-3 for my needs but bissl is too small.

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