There are people who like to drive Saab, like to talk about Saab, like to screw on their Saabs. Maybe they like all three things together, some alone makes driving Saab happy. And there are Saab people who turn their passion into a profession.
Not easy in times like these! Almost 3 years ago, blog supporter Gerard Ratzmann with Saab Service Frankfurt has made the leap into the Independence daring. 6 workplaces of the last German Saab factory were saved at that time. There was a start as an entrepreneur Interview on the blog.
Shortly after Christmas I got a call from Gerard Ratzmann, who at the time had a beautiful 84 Saab 900 Aero in the workshop. I like the early turbos, and the question he asked if I wanted to see the vehicle was probably more rhetorical. Of course I wanted to 🙂 Off to Frankfurt!
You can tell how a car dealership is run from the service counter. At Saab Service Frankfurt, Saab pins and 2015 calendars are available for customers at the service reception. Saab art hangs on the walls, the greeting is warm.
On this day there is inventory, the Saab base is closed. Actually ... Because during the 2 hours in Frankfurt, Saabs pull up every 10 minutes. The yard is full. One brings a Christmas present afterwards, an accident damage has to be assessed, a customer wants to buy a new Saab from previous ownership. And so on ...
Gerard Ratzmann and I find a quiet corner in the workshop, time for Saab Talk. How was the last three years and the jump into self-employment? It was not always easy, I hear. The starting phase was also a learning process. Rethinking - from the Saab employee, who was long involved in corporate structures, to the new role as an entrepreneur. Some early decisions were unsustainable and had to be corrected later. Now, after three years, the resume is positive. Saab Service Frankfurt is doing well, Saab is a viable business model. I'm talking to a relaxed and satisfied businessman who was able to turn his passion into a profession.
Meanwhile, 8 jobs in Fechenheim earn their livelihood with the Swedish brand. In the yard are Saabs of all series. From the classic Saab 900, through 9000, to the latest 9-3 and last generation 9-5. A rental car fleet of 4 Saabs is available as a workshop replacement car. With Saab advertising stuck, almost as if Saab was still an active manufacturer.
Saab passion ... the joy of the vehicles - I feel the same enthusiasm as three years ago. The workshop is sparkling clean, the employees are like their boss with their hearts. Somebody made the right decision, I think. Frankfurt Saab customers are loyal. Many have been driving Saab for what felt like an eternity and will continue to do so. Your service base is assured.
The Saab flags blow in Fechenheim in the winter wind. And there it is, the change. Because they do not blow anymore alone. Another automaker has moved into the front area of the former Saab factory. He is one of the largest car companies in Europe. Also a factory representative, in the best tradition. Fair that the Saab flags can still show presence in front of the road.