Inside Saab: De antwoorden (part 1)
Een paar dagen geleden op Inside Saab mocht je vragen stellen, en nu zijn daar antwoorden op, we sommen de leukste even op. 😉
Van: Inside Saab
1. When will production re-start, both in Trollhattan and in Mexico (Saab 9-4x)?
The short, idealist answer is that we’d like to start producing again as soon as we can. The longer (and more real) answer is that it’s a complex process with a number of milestones that need to be reached before we can communicate a date publicly. We have internal plans in place as to how and when the re-start should be commenced. We can’t communicate those plans publicly at this time, however, because the preliminary steps that we need to complete are still ahead of us.
For example, we still need to present our business plan to our creditors and have them approve it as part of the reorganisation process. This is a formal part of the reorganisation process and we cannot proceed without it. We also need to have a cohesive plan in place with our suppliers for payment and delivery and it isn’t possible to communicate a date publicly until those steps are completed.
Production of the Saab 9-4x is a slightly different matter, but is still subject to the same financial constraints as the rest of our business at this time. We do have a planned starting date for 2012 model year production but that will be subject to payment arrangements being made, which are once again dependent on our dealings in reorganisation and the approval of our Chinese partners.
2. Is Vladimir Antonov still interested in Saab?
Mr Antonov’s business intentions are not ours to comment on. We have enjoyed wonderful support from Mr Antonov, however it is clear to all that he cannot become an investor in Saab whilst we still have the EIB loan in place. When that loan is eventually cleared (see below) it will be up to Mr Antonov and his board as to whether his companies invest in Saab.
3. Are 2011 orders cancelled and is that factored into the business plan?
Orders placed so far in 2011 still remain, unless cancelled by the customer. There have been some cancellations, which is inevitable given our circumstances this year, but we still retain a very healthy order bank of around 10,500 vehicles, awaiting our re-start.
Our business plan definitely takes our current order bank into consideration, as well as the new products we’ll bring to market as soon as we re-commence production (the low emissions 9-3 TTiD SportCombi, and the 9-5 SportCombi).
4. Are there plans to use the old propeller logo in the future (a-la PhoeniX)?
There are no plans to revive the old Saab propeller logo as a prominent feature on future cars. It’s use on the wheels of PhoeniX was merely for effect (though I agree it looked good!).
As with the 9-3 Griffin, the Saab 9-5 and the Saab 9-4x, we plan to place a lot more badging emphasis on our actual name – SAAB. The Saab wordmark now features prominently on the front grille, the steering wheel and on the rear of our vehicles and it’s likely to remain this way for some time.
The griffin logo remains on the hood of the car.
5. When will the Saab 9-5 SportCombi be launched?
The new Saab 9-5 SportCombi was just weeks away from commencing production when the line was stopped back in April. In fact, we had 9-5 SportCombis on the production line at the time of the stoppage that were due to be used in drive events for the official launch. That’s how close things got.
The 9-5 SportCombi is a very important product for us, especially in the more wagon-centric European markets. We aim to get the Saab 9-5 SportCombi rolling off the line and into dealer forecourts as soon as possible when the factory re-starts.
And we’ll get that vehicle launch done, too.