IMPORTANT NEWS: National Electric Vehicle Sweden has agreed to buy the assets of Saab Automobile and the sale is expected to be finalized during the summer.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Japanese-Chinese bid on Saab

According to Swedish Radio P4 Väst, a Japanese-Chinese consortium has placed a bid on the entire Saab bankruptcy estate. P4 Väst's sources say that the consortium plans to start producing electric cars and batteries in Trollhättan under the Saab brand.

In early February reports came through that Chinese Beijing Automotive (BAIC), together with Japanese Panasonic, could be interested in starting a co-operation for electric vehicles in Trollhättan. But according to local Trollhättan newspaper TTELA, BAIC and Panasonic is not involved in the new Japanese-Chinese consortium. The consortium is said to consist of companies from the supplier industry.

Swedish Springtime is reported to be representing the consortium. CEO of Springtime, Maria Arnholm, said the following to TTELA:

"I can confirm that we represent parties which have interest in Saab. That's all I can say."

According to sources the consortium is among the favorites to win the bidding for Saab. The consortium is said to be backed by financially strong partners and they are ready to pay a good price for the Saab bankruptcy estate.

"They are big favorites, because they are financially very strong," one source said.

The consortium is said to have met and held favorable talks with the bankruptcy administrators.

"They have met a number of stakeholders around Saab and they are a strong card in the bidding," a source told Dagens Industri.

The consortium is also said to have support from the Swedish government and Ministries.


This would mean that we now have at least three more or less confirmed bidders. Chinese Youngman, Indian Mahindra and this new Japanese-Chinese consortium. Both Youngman and Mahindra are vehicle manufacturers and they want Saab's Phoenix platform and technical expertise and knowhow on regular cars. This new consortium on the other hand, wants to produce electric vehicle, which would mean the end to the Saab we know and love. The only thing that would carry on is the connection to Trollhättan and Sweden and the brand name Saab.

So what do we want, a Saab based on the Phoenix platform or a completely new electric Saab?