A new Saab opening and a subtle message from Alfa Romeo

There have been good things to report in the past week. Contrary to expectations, Saab is quite alive, it seems. The mails from the readers to ours accumulate in my mailbox the subjectwhy they still drive a Saab. The feedback is so lively that the deadline for submissions has been extended. More on that in the new week. And there are other good things too.

New Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA on test course. At the wheel of the CEO.
New Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA on test course. At the wheel of the CEO.

Saab reopening

A new Saab opening is rare, we have one to report in Switzerland. The country is at least on the way to becoming the Saab nation number 1 in Europe, so much is happening here. The Garage Jost has opened her new small Saab workshop in Pieterlen. The family business has been repairing and restoring Saab for what feels like an eternity, and it does so with great passion.

Often great vehicles are brought from Sweden, from the two-stroke Saab to the cool 9000 Aero. The Saab supplies for the confederates are secured in an enviable way. Happy relationships. A visit to Pieterlen, which is near the watchmaking metropolis of Biel, has been on my wish list for some time.

For the time when free travel will be possible again in Europe.

A subtle message

It's no secret that my automotive heart beats for Saab, but not only. There are other other European brands that I really like. They are all united by the fate that they are not doing particularly well in the present. Lancia and Alfa Romeo are the candidates; historically, they too were closely linked to Trollhättan in many ways for a long time.

With the creation of the Stellantis Group, I saw hope for the big, old European one Dream factory. It could come true, because Stellantis is reorganizing the structures at an impressive rate. Jean-Philippe Imparato switched from the flagship Peugeot, which is to be positioned higher in the future, to Alfa.

Maybe it's his dream job, it would be mine. In any case, Imparato makes Alfa Romeo visible again in the media and distributes subtle messages. Last week, the Alfa CEO tested the new Giulia GTA on the Balocco test track in Piedmont. The route is historic for Alfa, something like sacred ground.

Subtle message. Jean-Philippe Imparato Balocco leaves the Autodelta building.
Subtle message. Jean-Philippe Imparato Balocco leaves the Autodelta building.

It is no coincidence, of course, that Imparato is photographed leaving one of the historic Autodelta buildings. The Autodelta SpA ensures an increased heart rate for every fan of the brand. It stands for the glory days, for the victories in the sports car world championship in the 1970s. And for Alfas with a little more power.

Imparato signals that he has understood the brand and its emotionality. That looks good. Because emotionality is something that the industry is slowly losing. Or does someone find a moving smartphone emotional?

And that happens in the new week on the blog:

It continues here emotionally. Because not only Alfa can emotion, also the Swedes rated as hypothermic can do it.

  • Dream car from Spain to Germany. The Turbo X has landed.

Saab tradition in Germany. There is history and stories. Sometimes they are not easy to bear and you have to be able to remain silent and listen.

  • 40 years of Saab on Carl-Benz-Straße - relic and passion

Sweden stands for safe cars like no other nation. Now Volvo is deciding to use all-season tires for electric cars. A heated discussion has broken out in Sweden. How does that fit in with your image as a security pioneer? Take part in the discussion and vote.

  • Safety pioneer Volvo relies on all-season tires for electric cars

That and more is waiting in the new week. It will certainly not be boring here.

14 thoughts on "A new Saab opening and a subtle message from Alfa Romeo"

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    ... oh, yes alfa and saab fit ..
    have been driving and owning alfas for 43 years and saabs for 26 years …… .well….

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    I would also be very happy about a small, fine Italophile corner! My father has been driving Alfa since the 60s ...
    A beautiful brand that supports it in form
    deserved this blog all too well!
    Tom and team would certainly be able to provide one or the other Saab with a beautiful Italian. I would like ...

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    @ Hans S.,

    fine cars. Arouse my emotions too. Unfortunately, the presence of Lancia is even more unproductive than that of Alfa.
    In this respect alone, is Lancia Saab even more similar than Alfa? But is Lancia (current model range) also suitable as a bridge to the automotive present?

    The here & now seems to me to be a concern and a fun factor for the blogger. Alfa seemed appropriate to me. And the engines? I think they have a very modern and emotional engine in the Ferrari V6. But also nice 2 liter turbos. What more do you want?

    Personally, I get an Alfa station wagon, if I could make a wish.

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    In my opinion, Lancia is closer to Saab than Alfa. So if Lancia were to be added to the blog, I would be there right away. I've already written a comment or two about my Lancia. The vehicles, especially in the 60s and 70s, were technically state-of-the-art and also very elaborately built. And that in turn accelerated the decline of Lancia enormously. Take a look at the technical characteristics of a Fulvia, for example. Engine technology at its finest!

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    black / white (@ StF)

    Climate change is generally recognized by an overwhelming majority of humanity as real and self-caused.

    The point is just how to deal with it. And this is exactly where thinking becomes black and white and people are very lazy and comfortable, 95% revolves solely around traffic and power generation.

    If we think we will be driving big boxes of solar and wind energy in the future, then we are making it too easy for ourselves. And if we think we have unlimited of it and a holy grail, then we are making a mistake on top of it.

    In the future, where batteries are not possible or useful, we will simply produce e-fuel and hydrogen for aviation, for example. Unlimited and climate neutral.

    For me this is black and white. And it's infinitely convenient, because like this, everything stays as it is and we can go on and live as ever - just electrically.

    And because the journey is the goal and the first steps have been taken, we don't have to think any further - no further rethinking. About sensible and actually urgent immediate measures. No, we are going this one way now. Long and rocky, no light yet at the end of the tunnel and still with tunnel vision and blinkers.

    Why bio-fuel today when we may have unlimited quantities of e-fuel and electricity in 50 years' time?
    Why a speed limit on the BAB today? Why heat houses cheaply with green electricity?

    The whole transport and energy transition is a joke. The vision behind it is not a promise for the future, but a sedative pill. At the same time, it is a mammoth task, so that nobody is looking for alternatives or what else one could and should do, actually have to do immediately.

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    I can understand the desire for clear positions. If there are, many things can be categorized and structured more easily and thus also classified.
    However, in my impression, our world is becoming more and more complex and therefore less black and white and more and more gray, in more than one meaning.

    The changes in the Volvo model range are certainly easy to explain. You will have looked at which production capacity is bound by this 25% and whether you could not achieve more profit with this production capacity. And the way I understood the article, it's not about the whole 25%, but 'only' part of it.
    It is certainly interesting to know which one, since Volvo with its V90 and V60 Cross Country offers more classic alternatives to SUVs, but which are likely to be expensive to produce. Maybe they'll be thrown out of the portfolio, or maybe even the classic station wagons, because hardly anyone wants them anymore. We will see.

    Tires for Dubai give me a completely different idea. For so-called hot countries you might ask yourself whether it really has to be rubber or whether it could not also be permanently elastic thermoplastics? That could give the scrap tire disposal a whole new impetus.

    That would somehow bring me back to black / white versus gray. If the climate warners are right about the tipping points in their models, they are pointing out black / white decisions that we shouldn't make in the black direction.
    I cannot conclusively judge whether there is something to it, but surprisingly many people do not want to hear that in the context of my assessment and then point out the complex interrelationships in our world. Which is not untrue, but perhaps the wrong approach, because the precautionary principle should be used in such decisions.

    You tend to portray the world the way you would like it to be, certainly me too. Might be interesting to see who was right. Or maybe I belong to the last generation that is not personally concerned with this question.
    On the other hand, as is so often the case, the really important decisions may be completely different. The pandemic does offer options to choose from.

    So everyone have a nice rest Sunday and all the best for the future.

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    I think if I didn't drive a Saab, an Alfa would be on my doorstep. Why? Because Alfa - like Saab - was able, and unlike Saab, is still able to build emotional cars. Without wanting to come out, if there was a station wagon from the Giulia, I would probably have become weak. But so 😉
    The cars of both manufacturers cause this tingling sensation, they polarize, are a desirable alternative in the period of uniformity.
    If the CEO at Alfa continues with design as he did with the Peugeot 508, we may still have some positive surprises in store. Alfa would be indulgent, also - but not only - because of the earlier good connections to Trollhättan.

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    @ Tom,

    I like the experiments. For me, Alfa is a little bit the Mediterranean Saab, the 4C was a modern sonnet and so on ...
    In 164 the paths actually crossed and in articles and comments the brand at least occasionally had its guest appearances here.

    Would have been exciting to know how many readers would have ticked the newsletter at Alfa ;–)

    Only a third for Volvo? I'm surprised in that sense (only) You can save yourself the overused wisdom about different perspectives on glass and filling.

    I also read all of the articles on Volvo. And also all the comments below. It seems to me that the brand is becoming more and more exciting without arousing positive emotions.

    The tire debate will probably run very similarly. I can vividly imagine the comments. For example, how useful an e-SUV is, that with a weight of over 2 tons and an infinite amount of torque, it can rub its erasers on hot streets.

    Or queries in this sense as to whether the relatively soft and hard-wearing rubbers should really and seriously also be the only option ex works for export (such as an XC90 to Dubai)?

    And there will probably also be voices who defend or even advertise all-season tires as a pragmatic solution, because they have had positive experiences with them themselves. The (valid) arguments will be that things are now quite good, that you are environmentally conscious and travel a lot by bike or public transport or have several cars, so that you are annoyed by the change and 2 wheel sets per vehicle cannot wear out before cured rubbers and porous tires have to be thrown away, which is also not the point.

    The bottom line will be a strange course by the Gothenburgers, which will taste very much like savings and rationalization. Not just because of the tire policy. Someone will make a connection to the last Volvo article here and (rightly) question how and why a manufacturer comes up with the idea of ​​removing vehicles from its range because they "only" make up 25% of sales.

    It's funny and contradicting itself (if not to say suspicious) when a brand that has celebrated success with the expansion of its model range is now looking for its future in shrinking it again. This step is also disturbing because the figures make you sit up and take notice. With the introduction of the SUV, single-digit growth rates were celebrated as a great success. A manufacturer who now declares 25% of its turnover and sales as irrelevant ballast and at the same time renounces its roots, either the center of our solar system appears to be from a body opening, or he is under massive pressure to save.

    In which of the two pictures do all-season tires for Dubai fit best? There is the answer.

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    @ Tom, my personal statement on the subject - why do I still drive Saab - I will write tomorrow evening - will be a little more.
    Today's Sunday was completely spent on SAAB screwdriving - successfully ...

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    Alfa Romeo has a tragic tendency similar to that of Saab. That's why I find Alfa as a topic emotional and exciting. So is Volvo, of course, but not so much.

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    I like Alfa on Sundays

    Without wanting to anticipate the announced discussion about Volvo, but Volvo only interests me historically. That means I'm interested in Saab's contemporaries. So the cars that were built in Gothenburg and Trollhättan after WW II until 2010 in competition with each other.

    After that, nothing affects me from S. Volvo once considered the blog as a second focus and as a bridge to the present. But that seems to me to be more sobering than positive and emotional?

    If the Saabblog is still looking for such a “side act”, I would personally find the view of Italy much more exciting than that of “Schinaden”. It also goes well with the ingenious SAAB espresso cups.

    @ Tom ("Why ...),
    are submissions still welcome despite the flooded “mailbox”? And could the blog support the senders with images if necessary?
    My problem is that I lack the images for my story. With a few photos from the Saab blog archive of the predecessors of my current Saab, it would be complete.

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      @Volvaab Driver Yes why? The submissions are absolutely exciting and invigorating. The reader's point of view is sometimes amazing, I like to take it in. By the way, there is no need for pictures. Quotations or longer excerpts are published. The guest author function does not (yet) have a complete text for this.

      Alfa interesting? I am experimenting. Volvo is not close to my heart, I just take in current trends as a neutral observer. The articles are read surprisingly well, it seems to interest readers. Incidentally, a third of the newsletter subscribers have made their mark at Volvo.

      A passion for Italy can turn into something completely different. Maybe.

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    Got Stellantis on my radar too! A revival of Lancia away from the Y would be a dream!

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    Stellantis is currently doing a lot right. So beyond Alfa :-). Technology open, affordable cars for everyone, no elitist “electric car only” fuss. In contrast to many others, she has not lost sight of the fact that a large part of the world has no infrastructure for an EV and that people cannot afford it.

    These people too must remain mobile in the future. Because if the European manufacturers don't offer it, a Chinese manufacturer will.


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