NEVS Manager talks about SAAB Future

The short break on the Saab blog is over. Opportunity for a short look in the quite calm, wintry Sweden. And on what a NEVS manager has to say in the radio interview about the future. But first to Uddevalla, a few kilometers from Trollhättan. There, Autometal Scandinavia AB will establish an assembly of exhaust systems for the Saab factory.

Saab 9-5 NG in winter
Saab 9-5 NG in winter

Like Trollhättan, Uddevalla suffers from the abolition of Saab car production and the closure of the Volvo assembly plant last summer. Every new workplace is very welcome, and Autometal Scandinavia AB would rather buy the factory building in the local business park than rent it.

From which we can draw at least two conclusions. Anyone who buys instead of renting sees a certain future potential and has confidence in what NEVS is planning. On the one hand. But if you are faced with the question of whether you want to rent or buy in January, you will hardly start assembly in the spring. Sweden is not China, in case of doubt things take more time than less. The assembly could go into operation in autumn or even later. Then when NEVS finally produces quantities of vehicles with turbo engines.

What may take longer than we like it, because the focus is on China and the electric drive. How correct this statement is is substantiated by the interview with NEVS Manager Frank Smit.

Frank Smit on the plans at NEVS

Frank Smit supports the position of "Vehicle Program Manager" at NEVS. In the past he worked for several years at GM in various positions and at SAAB Automobile AB. He has been with NEVS since September 2013.

The Dutchman gave an interview on BNR Nieuwsradio last Friday about his future plans. The focus is on the electric car, which will celebrate its premiere this year, but not at the Geneva Motor Show (but a little later in Beijing). NEVS has the ambition to surpass Tesla. Not right away with the first product, but in the medium term.

Smit does not rule out a plug-in hybrid based on the “new” 9-3. “But we are initially concentrating primarily on the production of electric cars. This is our business model. "

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Smit does not see for the time being that Saab will again become a volume brand in the near future. "If you earn well per car, you don't have to produce 80, 100 or 120.000 cars a year," he said. Hmm ...

In the interview, Smit speaks of the “new 9-3” and by that means the revised base that we are familiar with. The term “plug-in hybrid” is used for the first time. Perhaps, it looks like the revision of the model range will be more profound than previously thought and more than just an "upgrade". The Netherlands has traditionally been a strong market for Saab. The vehicles from Trollhättan are the alternative to the German premium providers there. The last 9-5 generation was also sold better in the neighboring country than here. Perhaps in Sweden the Netherlands will be seen as the first future European market that will be developed outside of Sweden. It would be possible.



14 thoughts on "NEVS Manager talks about SAAB Future"

  • Sorry folks, but I'm slowly running out of patience with the constant gossip about the electric NEVS Saab. It is simply no longer up to date to take an old, albeit very good, diesel / gasoline car and install a battery and an e-motor! Exactly this strategy never worked. Who needs the Saab 9-3 to only drive in the city? Why carry so much weight with you? The whole thing is a Potenkim's village and nothing more. The electric cars are ONE future but not the only possible one, and success will depend on how “intelligent” the vehicle of the future is. Honestly, how should the NEVS-eSaab convince you? With an empty weight of over 1500 kg or a range of 100 km? It's already clear to me that NEVS wants to have a quick snack at the home market and obviously you also have a buyer through the city partner. But who really believes that the NEVS-eSaab will prevail here in Europe? I don't even think NEVS.
    It would be more honest and future-oriented to say, “Folks, we're building the 9-3 as an Aero Turbo to keep you happy and developing its successor, which brings real Saab virtues. We are also coming with a new e-car that is light, nimble, small and perfectly designed for the city and uses the achievements of mother Google perfectly for the benefit of the driver ”(eg a la Mia).

    So if I'm honest, I think that the Quoros 3 Sedan contains more Saab genes than there will ever be in a new NEVS development. It is not for nothing that the whole "bucket" was constructed in Europe with the help of a number of ex-Saab engineers and, in terms of safety, overshadows everything that has ever been tested. Yes, I admit that if my Saab 9-3 XWD MY11 no longer works, I will probably prefer to buy a Quoros built in China but constructed in Europe with Saab & AVL engineers than a NEVS Saab assembled in toilets, which is only for the Chinese market is being huddled together ... well, I kept my 9-5 Aero for daily stroking anyway 😉

    So, I had to get rid of that. Thank you for reading.

  • Not better, but different already! And I find that important to express!

  • I also drove BMW for many years. I agree with the seats but I was always impressed by the engines. There are also runnability of 250.000 km and more no problem. My current 9-3 v6 needs on average 2 liters more than the 330i I had before. And anyone who can drive halfway can handle a rear-wheel drive. My wife is still driving BMW and has never complained in the winter.

    • The eternal BMW discussion ... In Munich they build first-class engines and if NEVS really could come up with a supplier of this quality for future vehicles, then it would be an asset for the brand. But we should wait and see what happens, the current state of affairs is only known in Sweden.

      • There's nothing to add!

        • But:

          You buy a BMW because you need it!

          A Saab for your own good!

          • Huh? ? ?

            Sounds like some people drive SAAB in order to be able to feel like something better - as if some people “need” that.
            Where is the difference?

  • We live in Germany and it will hardly be possible for a manager of a car manufacturer not based in Germany to chat on a radio broadcast.
    In the Netherlands, it is different that Saab-Nevs took advantage of this opportunity, but shows very clearly that we may have hope.

    As Frank Smiith has clearly mentioned in the conversation, the startup of production and the development of a lot of costs, (is of course obvious, the mention I interpret so that there is probably little room left) probably it is easier, money needed in the short term To earn China.

    I could not understand that Nevs did not take over Saab Parts. Since BMW appeals now, shows that the risk for Nevs was probably too high and explains the waiver.

    Possibly this litigation is also responsible for the rather hesitant start in Sweden / Europe. Perhaps BMW is now beating Orio just to weaken Nevs, because Saab has always been a direct BMW competitor in many markets.

    Hopefully, this litigation will help with the engine choice, the thought of a BMW engine in Saab is completely unimaginable for me. I am already suffering heavily at the sight of ANA Trollhättan, with all the BMW and Minimüll in the showroom.

    • Detlef, I do not know why you are so unattractive here about BMW. Although I'm not a fan of Bayern, but that's not waste!
      The turbo engines are quite similar to former 2Ltr SAAB engines anyway and certainly not bad.
      BMW is just launching the third hatchback model with a large tailgate. I took a look at the 3 Series GT in November, it comes relatively close to the 9000 concept and has a surprising amount of space - if it weren't for that wretched rear-wheel drive… .The all-wheel drive vehicles are then really expensive.
      There are currently open old SAAB niches closed.

      • I learned to hate BMW in the 80s and 90s because our company cars were 3 and 5 series. I have never sat in a car as badly as in all kinds of BMWs. The characteristics of the engines and their "drinking behavior" were subterranean compared to the private Saab. As a "trained" front-wheel drive driver, the driving behavior in not ideal conditions was simply too strenuous for me. I know a lot has changed there, but since then I have wanted to be spared these Bavarian products.
        Design is even more a matter of taste. These folds of BMW are an impertinence, well, and what is marketed under the name Mini, there blindness would be a redemption.

        After this polemic short seriously. Just because BMW tries to close the gaps that Saab has left shows that one sees a direct competitor here. After GM, now in the dependency on BMW, I think for Saab not worth aspiring.

  • That with the exhaust system fabrication is really interesting.

    I'm slowly starting to see my new car from Trollhättan in front of me - if it's the Dutch people's turn first, that's okay too

    Incidentally, long-term studies have shown that the Dutch are among the most intelligent people in Europe, alongside the Scandinavians. This makes us realize why SAAB automobiles are the first choice there!

    Best regards from HH

    • That's why the Dutch have bought more 9-5 than the Germans.

      Greetings from S-H

  • I could live with the Netherlands too. Just drive over the border and buy a new SAAB

  • Hach. How did I miss your reports? So I can wait. Only others can do it? If necessary, one can then import one from the Netherlands. Is certainly easier than from Sweden.

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