Tesla production in the Saab plant in the future?

The car industry is in transition, much is possible. The fact that Tesla is looking for a European site for a complete production is well known. In addition to locations in Germany, France, the Netherlands and Portugal, Trollhättan is also in discussion - and thus the former Saab factory.

Saab plant Trollhättan. Production of the Saab 9-3. Image: Saab Automobile AB

Tesla production in Trollhättan. Swedish wishful thinking?

The contacts to Tesla were first made in early summer 2016. According to Sveriges Radio are both Business Sweden as well as the federation of the auto industry FKG participated in the discussions. You see a tough competition for Tesla, but also big chances.

The infrastructure in southern Sweden is consistent, the way to the largest European markets is short. On site in Trollhättan there is a lot of experience in the automotive industry and a functioning network of suppliers. The Swedish auto industry in 2017 is a success story thanks to foreign investment. Why an auto plant, which is unused for years in the meadow, so do not want to fit.

Of course, wishful thinking is part of the tough competition for a possible Tesla location. But an existing factory could be a trump card in the race for winning, even if it had to be refurbished and modernized. In the immediate vicinity is the research and development center of NEVS with wind tunnel, laboratories and test track. In addition, Trollhättan is a research and innovation focus of the auto industry.

In recent years, NEVS has repeatedly expressed interest in custom production. There were discussions with various companies, including Tesla. To an order it did not come out so far. NEVS Industrial Services (NIS) is working on a reboot and has secured the support of an experienced Valmet Automotive Manager. Valmet Automotiv, formerly Saab Valmet, also works for German brands as a contract manufacturer.

Tesla and NEVS in direct competition?

What could speak against a Tesla production in the former Saab plant, is the model planning of NEVS. The vehicles announced from 2020 could be placed in the same price and market segment as the upcoming Tesla 3 model. Both companies are in direct competition with each other, which would make a joint production at least questionable.

There remains the possibility that NEVS will lease the plant in the long term or sell it completely. For NEVS, Trollhättan would in the future be a pure research and development location, as is the case with CEVT in Gothenburg and the new brand Lynk & Co. However, this is pure speculation, for which there is no evidence.

Tesla has announced that it will decide within 2 years. For Trollhättan it would be hundreds of new jobs, and perhaps the location for battery manufacturing. Which could also be of interest to NEVS.

12 thoughts too "Tesla production in the Saab plant in the future?"

  • Dream and possible reality ...
    Definitely good for the Troll-City region!

  • I admit that for the first time I looked at today's date ...

  • I suspect that Volvo sooner or later strikes. Or Lynk & Co and CEVT. NEVS just can not do it, the China Mobile should first 2018 come on the market. Is not very convincing in my eyes.

  • Does site search actually mean that Tesla wants to entrust a foreign manufacturer with the production?
    I thought that they had excelled so far by a quite amazing autonomy for the industry?
    A location is initially a property and not just a partner ...

    Could it be that Tesla buys the plant and NEVS goes all the way to China?

    • Tesla will probably prefer to buy, build, lease. NEVS could lease the plant and rent a shift. A sale in the current situation is not very likely. But not completely impossible.

  • Do the NEVS-people actually want to put something on their feet or just give an American competitor the possibility of producing for European markets in Trollhättan ??

    I did not hear that there were any discussions. In my opinion, the whole thing is more than strange and unfortunately leaves me more and more doubt about NEVS. What do they really want to do in the future with the SAAB heritage and much of the SAAB spirit - I'm afraid SAAB enthusiasts really do not have much!

    • Currently, the impression is solidifying that more and more moves towards China. Whether Saab Erbe will be reinterpreted and whether in the medium term it will really matter, I see with a growing question mark.

      • As a die-hard SAAB lover, I do not just resent NEVS if in the end nothing edible should come out - as you know, many cooks have contributed to ruin. Above all, the former American chef GM. A Dutch young chef and the Swedish auxiliary cooks (Legislative and Judiciary) have then proven their inability then also - clear that slowly for the foodie everything somehow inedible (probably just with the current Chinese chef Jiang).

        It's time to look for a new automotive treat - but TESLA is not. Where should one only find something?

  • if development and production fall apart so far, I will probably no longer be willing to buy a car there. I'm too European for that.

    However, the idea is neither implausible nor alien to me. In fact, I've suggested this several times for Apple's car, which probably no longer comes.

  • The question is whether NEVS has not simply missed a contract manufacturing facility at the right time. Now it is already 6 years quiet and the facilities are not doing better. Competence has moved on to Gothenburg and I think we will see a sale in the end.
    Not necessarily today or next month. But safe in the medium term. As an alternative comes the demolition, but NEVS will certainly never produce even an electric car in Sweden.

  • ….it is exactly like that. I always said that was Saab. If a reputable investor had taken Saab out of ongoing operations and continued to develop it, that would have been fine - see Volvo. Such was and is Saab history. Unfortunately

  • It is like it is. In the current world view, everything has to grow, boom, expand. That would be possible with individual cars such as SAAB on the world market, but not in the rakentenhaft steep curve as the "experts in money increase hope". SAAB Automabile is history and that will stay that way until I go back to the garage, turn the key and leave. TESLA I basically trust everything. But I do not see it all together with NEVS in a workshop. Too much distrust of the "copy-paste Chinese" and vice versa may be similar. I think TESLA will go for "cheap housekeeping" because shareholders like it.

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