Last week, we asked readers for their opinion on the future prospects of NEVS. The result can be considered historical, because for the first time a large majority saw the failure of NEVS before their eyes.
Presumably they are right. Beyond all Saab romance, NEVS has accumulated too many mistakes. The trademark rights lost, no production, no liquidity, no clear concept. Under certain circumstances, the administrator will soon pull the plug; only a miracle can save. And they are known to be very, very rare.
A possible failure of NEVS need not be the end of Saab in the automotive industry, nor the end of the Trollhättan location. It could mean a new beginning. For the final farewell, the brand is too lively, the fan base too strong and the cars with the griffin just too good. We will see…
The industry is full of surprises, and because it's bland to write about NEVS, we're looking into the big, wide world today.
Will NEVS come to a positive conclusion?
- No never! (64% 371 Votes)
- Yes, in any case! (36% 212 Votes)
Total Voters: 583
What is Qoros doing?
The car industry is not a simple patch. Even companies that may have done a lot more well than NEVS have an icy wind blowing in their faces. Do we remember Qoros? In Sweden, the brand was already celebrated as Saab 2.0, then it was quiet. No one talks about sales in the home country of Saab, the key word is disappointment.
The recipe sounded so good. Take a large amount of money, commit well-deserved veterans from the auto industry, mix European design with European technology from the kit of renowned suppliers and build in China premium cars for the world market.
The result: a handsome product with top marks in the NCAP crash test. Just….
... nobody likes to buy it. Qoros does not publish figures, but makes no secret of the disappointment. The sale is far below expectations "... if you had started 4 or 5 years earlier, yes then ..." This is how you express yourself at Qoros. Too late, the cake on the huge market is largely distributed, the industry is established and newcomers have a hard time. Qoros, as a domestic producer with a brand new product, is disappointing; how about NEVS re-infusing the 9-3?
In China, there are around 5.000 vehicles that found customers between January and December 2014. And Qoros is not gaining momentum, sales are said to be stuck with 500 to 550 vehicles per month. In order to get the Qoros 3 into the Chinese top ten approval, as announced, you need a quantity of 200.000 to 300.000 units. No wonder that the personnel carousel is starting to turn in Shanghai. Qoros is an example that you can do a lot with a lot of money, but that you also reach your limits. Without a crazy story in the background, without a fan base, it's difficult to establish a brand.
While Qoros continues to fight and there are no more statements as to when you want to be profitable, something amazing is happening in Switzerland ...
Borgward is coming back ...
... and there is also a Saab link here. The story in a nutshell: the grandson of the company founder, Christian Borgward, and a certain Karlheinz L. Knöss have been working from Switzerland for a long time on the comeback, which should now become reality. The mentioned Mr Knöss - the name will not mean anything to very few readers - was a member of the management team at Saab Germany and director of public relations in the late 90s. With partner Foton in the background, the brand is to be reborn; The first sign of life is the Geneva Motor Show with a 400 square meter stand.
The draft of the first study came from the former Saab designer Einar Hareide, who for some time was the director of design at Borgward. It is unclear whether he is still responsible for this. From this year on, 5 new Borgwards are expected to hit the market in quick succession; The premium segment is targeted. The development work for the new vehicles is said to have taken place in Switzerland.
All right, the brand has disappeared 1961, now it comes back. The old Borgwards are cult, but after more than half a century, someone has been waiting for new cars? Investor Foton is China's number 4 in vehicle manufacturing, supposedly highly profitable, and one can credit the Chinese the necessary billions to revive Borgward.
Only - it does have a flaw after all. Borgwards main plant in Sebaldsbrück is still occupied by the invaders from the southwest. They have been at home there since the 60s. There are no indications that the Swabians are withdrawing from Bremen. The traditional work remains in enemy hands.
And Borgward? A new car factory for Borgward in Germany, you would have heard that would be a sensation.
The Borgwards are to be built in China in the future. Premium for the world, a great traditional brand. And yet another birth defect. Not that we misunderstand each other: I like these stories about big old brands and the dreams of a comeback. The automotive landscape needs alternatives to the prevailing monoculture. I wish Borgward AG and the founder's grandson all the success in the world. But the rebirth of legends depends on the details, at least from a certain price and expectation class.
And with the name Borgward we are in one of the highest expectation classes! If you take a lot of money in hand, then you should treat yourself to the luxury of consequence in the smallest detail. Borgward is a German legend. Point.
Borgward from China in the future? Perhaps, despite all the romance of the automobile, the seeds of failure have already been planted there.