Saab Production | TheDetroitBureau.com
Detroit Bureau on Twitter

Posts Tagged ‘saab production’

A Saab Story with a Happy Ending?

Swedish maker builds first car in over two years.

by on Dec.02, 2013

The Saab plant was building the maker's 9-5 model when it was forced to shut down in April 2011.

Could there be a happy ending to one of the auto industry’s longest-running Saab stories? Or, more appropriately, a happy new beginning?

After a more than two-and-a-half-year shutdown that saw the Swedish maker go bankrupt, new owners have fired up the assembly line and rolled out a new Saab 9-3 Aero. The question is whether the plant will be able to keep going under control of a Chinese-Japanese consortium that eventually wants to shift production to a new line of electric vehicles.

Global News!

For now, production at the old Saab plant in Trollhattan, Sweden will be limited to “small and humble numbers,” said Mikael Ostlund, the spokesman for Hong Kong-based National Electric Vehicle Sweden.

(more…)

Saab is Back in Business – Almost

New owner restarts Swedish assembly line for first time in two years.

by on Sep.20, 2013

The Saab assembly line in Trollhattan, Sweden has been idled for more than two years.

Shortly before its seemingly final collapse, struggling Swedish automaker Saab rolled out a striking concept vehicle it dubbed the Phoenix.  Despite generally positive reviews, the prototype wasn’t enough to save Saab from collapse, but now under new ownership, Saab is once again trying to rise from the ashes – and the Phoenix could be the long-term key.

For now, though, the new parent, National Electric Vehicle Vehicle Sweden, or NEVS, is focusing on building the old Saab 9-3 as it fires up the maker’s flagship Trollhattan assembly plant for the first time since April of 2011.

Auto News From a Source You Trust!

Just two cars rolled down the line this week, and “We need to finalize a few remaining dialogues to build partnerships with suppliers (before a formal decision is made) to start production of Saab cars,” cautioned a statement from Mattias Bergman, the acting president of NEVS.  But the goal is to have a turbocharged version of the 9-3 back in production before year end.

(more…)

Saab Wrangles a Reprieve

Swedish courts give it a chance to complete Chinese deal.

by on Dec.16, 2011

Saab's North American chief Tim Colbeck tells suppliers the maker has won at least a temporary reprieve.

It’s proving a lot more risky than most folks might have anticipated to bet against the struggling Swedish automaker Saab.  Just ask administrator Guy Lofalk.

Barely a week ago, he had recommended that the courts end Saab’s voluntary reorganization, which would have meant the collapse of the company, which has been struggling to find investors – or a buyer – since last spring.  Instead, Lofalk has been fired and replaced with what appears to be a more willing administrator while Saab itself will have some more time to pull together a deal, according to an e-mail sent by Saab Cars North America President Tim Colbeck to suppliers.

Upgrade Your Insight!

“There was positive progress in the negotiation” with Chinese carmaker Zhejiang Youngman Lotus, the executive reported, adding that Victor Muller, Saab’s global chairman, “remained optimistic an agreement would be reached in the short term.”

(more…)

Saab Lining Up New Chinese Partner

by on Dec.05, 2011

Saab has lined up yet another Chinese deal - but may face problems getting it approved.

Struggling Swedish automaker Saab has lined up yet another White Knight in an effort to forestall bankruptcy.

With several earlier deals now stalled, Saab officials revealed they are talking with an undisclosed Chinese bank hoping it will partner with China’s Zhejiang Youngman Lotus Automobile Co. to buy a stake in the Swedish maker.

But the latest proposal would face some of the same hurdles that have tripped up other possible rescue deals.  Among other things, it would require the approval of Saab’s former parent, General Motors, which has been reluctant to give the go to any deal that might hand proprietary technologies over to the Chinese.

Subscribe Now! Free!

Saab was struggling even before GM agreed to sell off the subsidiary in early 2010.  But things got significantly worse early this year when a number of key suppliers launched a boycott over unpaid bills.  The maker’s headquarters plant, in Trollhattan, Sweden, hasn’t been in steady operation since late March.

(more…)

Saab Decision Delayed

Maker gets bridge loan but fate still uncertain.

by on Nov.23, 2011

A partially assembled Saab sits idle in Trollhattan. The plant has been shuttered since March.

Saab’s fate appears to be hanging by a thread despite finally receiving a cash infusion from a Chinese alliance looking to buy the struggling Swedish automaker.

Any decision on the fate of Saab has been delayed as the Swedish court that was scheduled to hear arguments over the company’s reorganization has temporarily put off a decision. No date has been set for a new hearing, Saab officials said.  There had been pressure from Saab creditors – and its Swedish unions – to force the company into bankruptcy, which would likely have shut it down.

In the Know!

Meanwhile, Saab officials are growing slightly more confident about receiving final approval from the Chinese government for the deal that will allow an infusion of Chinese cash into the company. Last summer, dealer network Pang Da and automaker Zhejiang Youngman Lotus initially agreed to purchase a majority stake in Saab. They are now hoping to purchase the maker outright – but for barely a third of their original offer.

(more…)

Saab Gets Another Reprieve

Chinese come through with $97 million bridge loan.

by on Oct.14, 2011

The bridge loan might just let Saab restart assembly operations next month.

For anyone disappointed to see soap operas vanish from American television there’s always the Saab saga to fall back on.

Just days after is seemed the maker was going to be forced into an involuntary bankruptcy it has been given at least another temporary reprieve, it has received the first installment of a $97 million bridge loan from one of the two Chinese companies looking to eventually buy a controlling stake in the struggling Swedish automaker.

Automaker Zhejiang Youngman Lotus reportedly has cut a $15 million check for Saab and should have the full $97 million deposited in the troubled Saab’s bank account within the next week or so.  It had appeared increasingly likely that the Chinese carmaker and China’s largest auto dealer, Pang Da, were not going to get approval from Beijing regulators to complete their acquisition of a majority stake in Saab.  With no new sources of cash, the Swedish maker would have been forced into what likely would have been the break-up of the company.

Your Trusted Source!

The new loan should help Saab cover at least some of its bills.  It owes millions to 3,600 Swedish employees – which prompted their unions to try to force Saab into bankruptcy.  But it also owes millions to key suppliers.  Those partsmakers have been boycotting the company since late March over unpaid bills.  As a result, Saab hasn’t produce any cars at its headquarters plant in Trollhattan for more than six months.

(more…)

Saab May Be Hours From Bankruptcy

Chinese deals appear dead.

by on Oct.11, 2011

A new Saab 9-4X with the 9-5. Production of the latter model has been on hold since late March.

With a pair of Chinese deals apparently ready to collapse, it appears that embattled Swedish automaker Saab may be mere hours away from bankruptcy.

The administrator put in charge of helping Saab reorganize appears to be losing patience as several proposed partnerships fail to materialize for the Swedish marque.  Barring a last-minute breakthrough, Swedish newspapers say he could pull the plug and force Saab into formal bankruptcy, effectively spelling the end for the maker.

Subscribe Now - It's Free!

Saab had hoped to turn to two Chinese allies, dealership network Pangda and automaker Zhejiang Youngman Lotus, to generate more than $200 million in much-needed cash – including a $96 million short-term bridge loan.  But the loan has repeatedly been delayed and it appears now that the Chinese government is refusing to authorize the deals because it does not believe Saab can provide the sort of intellectual property the money would justify, according to Svenska Dagbladet.

“We are still expecting the Youngman loan to come in,” insisted spokeswoman Gunilla Gustavs, but the maker has been saying the same thing for weeks.

(more…)

Saab Shooting to Re-Start Production Mid-November

Maker now under court protection.

by on Sep.26, 2011

A Saab 9-5 in the Trollhattan plant.

Struggling under court protection to raise cash and pay off angry creditors Swedish automaker Saab hopes to get back into the business of building cars by sometime in mid-November.

That is just the latest in a series of plans to restart the company’s headquarters assembly plant in Trollhattan, Sweden, however, and skeptics would be far from surprised if the maker misses that goal, as well.

Be in the Know!

After being rescued from the automotive rubbish heap in early 2010, Saab’s new parent – now known as Swedish Automobile – fell short of its sales targets and steadily deeper in debt.  By late March of this year the company’s unpaid vendors decided to boycott, leading to the shutdown of the Trollhattan plant.

(more…)

Saab Files for Voluntary Reorganization

"We're not trying to pay pennies on the dollar."

by on Sep.07, 2011

Saab hopes to re-open its plants even while under a court-ordered reorganization.

Facing increasing pressures over unpaid bills Swedish Automobile, the parent of cash-starved Saab, has filed for voluntary reorganization under Swedish law.  The move, a last-ditch attempt to buy time while it raises much-needed funds, is an alternative to a bankruptcy filing that might have led to the collapse of the troubled carmaker.

Effectively a self-managed reorganization, the move is aimed at working out plans to pay worker salaries as well as bills owed Saab suppliers and other vendors.  A senior company official said the 90-day process could also see Saab resume production at its headquarters assembly plant in Trollhattan, Sweden.  That factory has been idled since it was struck by a supplier boycott in late March.

Subscribe Now - It's Free!

“This gives us some stability” while efforts are underway to raise some desperately needed cash, Tim Colbeck, President and COO of Saab Cars North America, or SCNA said in an interview with TheDetroitBureau.com.  The reorganization, he noted, only affects Swedish Automobile and some of its key subsidiaries in Sweden.  Sales operations in North America and the U.K., among others, are not directly impacted.

(more…)

Saab Production Resumes in August, But Maker Still Faces Major Challenges

Putting the emotion back into a “passion brand.”

by on Jul.07, 2011

The first Saab 9-4X crossovers rolled into U.S. dealer showrooms this week.

With cash in hand to pay both workers and boycotting suppliers, Saab will re-start its Swedish assembly line on August 9th, the automaker confirmed, though company officials acknowledge Saab still has a tough battle ahead if it hopes to reverse the financial problems that nearly shut it down over the last three months of frantic deal making.

While the maker continues to look for additional revenue sources to help ensure it won’t run into another cash crunch, the upcoming challenge will be to not only resume production but get buyers back into the carmaker’s 199 U.S. showrooms, said Tim Colbeck, President and Chief Operating Officer of Saab Cars North America.

Subscribe for Free!

“Our priority,” he said, during a small briefing for Detroit journalists, “is to instill confidence in the brand.”

There hasn’t been much of that in recent months.

(more…)