Posted by: saabnuts | August 11, 2010

Saab Business Plans & Future Models

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August 11, 2010:

Following is a longer interview with Victor Muller of Saab from Fox News. The Muller interview begins around 14 minutes and 30 seconds into the video at the link (above or below).

Victor Muller on Fox News

This is apparently a longer version of the Fox News interview with Victor Muller seen previously (including on a a recent post on this blog).

Mr. Muller speaks elegantly and with such enthusiasm and vision about Saab as always, that for Saab fans, his words get our hearts beating a little faster, and make us excited to see what Saab will bring to market in the coming years.

Mr. Muller discusses the incredible bargain price of Saab at around $74 million, and the good fortune of being able to purchase an established, unique and strong little automaker which included both a ready to go new Saab 9-5, now arriving at U.S. Saab dealers, the coming 9-4X Crossover, and new 9-3 models.

Next year, July 2011 will bring us a coming wagon version of the all new 9-5.

2010 Saab 9-5 Wagon: courtesy of Saabs United

Also coming in (April) 2011 is the all new Saab 9-4X, a brand new Crossover / SUV from Saab.

SAAB 9-4X Crossover / SUV

2011 SAAB 9-4X

Mr. Muller discussed some of his favorite aspects of the new 9-5 including the powerful, efficient and smooth V-6 in the new 9-5, which produces around 300 horsepower, as well as the new all wheel drive / 4 wheel drive system and related electronics which have produced the most advanced, safe, stable and yet fun to drive Saab to date. Saab has managed to improve upon the already outstanding safety and crash worthiness of Saabs with this all new 9-5. Safety is never an afterthought in Saabs, it is an integral part of every design.

Music to my ears was hearing Mr. Muller mention that you must drive the new 9-5, and drive it on ice to gain a full sense of appreciation of just how outstanding the new 9-5 is on the road. Saabs have always been excellent snow and ice vehicles, and to hear that they have improved upon the prowess of Saabs on ice, makes me want to be among the first to own one of these new Saabs.

In spite of the fact that GM owned Saab while the new 9-5 and 9-4X were developed, Saab was allowed to do the engineering and have more influence upon the final product. The result is that Saab has great new models coming in a very short time after being purchased by Spyker and Mr. Muller. Good news indeed for Saab.

Mr. Muller also mentions a completely new Saab 9-3 model coming in 2012. The new 9-3 will be on a platform and chassis that has been custom tailored to Sabs wants and needs, engineered by Saab, and will benefit from the design creativity and expertise of newly appointed head of design for Saab, Jason Castriota.

The all new 9-3 for 2012 will be a replacement for Saabs “bread and butter” 9-3 model, and will have both a fresh look and design, with uniqueness that will also be as “Saaby” as ever. I am already excited and anxious to see images of the new design when they emerge and become finalized.

Perhaps in 2013 or more realistically in 2014, we might see an all new “A” model, lower priced than the 9-3 range, which will bring another unique and interesting addition to the Saab line-up.

The 2013 / 2014 new model MIGHT be named a 9-1 or 9-2 (or 91 or 92, the dashes might go away similar to early Saab models that didn’t use dashes in the name (95, 96, 99, 900, 9000)).

This new 9-1 or 9-2 might be smaller, sporty, still turbo charged and would be an entry level but premium offering. Something Saab once dominated according to Mr. Muller.

The new 9-1 or 9-2 will likely incorporate parts such as engines from another premium automaker. Mr. Muller will not comment on which automakers are in talks with Saab at this stage, though other outlets mention BMW without proper verification or confirmation from anyone at Saab or BMW.

This is all good news to Saab fans and aficionados. Saab is in business and has new models coming in a short timeframe.

Saab emerged from  “wind down” and liquidation with new, well financed owners, reduced the debt of the company, and in just a few short years will have all new models, the oldest of which being the all new Saab 9-5 just arriving at dealers.

One criticism of Saab (and makers like Volvo as well, in the past) was not having enough new models often enough. Personally, I prefer the idea of car models having time to mature and be perfected, but I am not the person a car company should base important business decisions around.

Mr. Muller clearly has excellent business sense and is managing to bring a great company back from the brink towards a bright and profitable future.

Way to go Mr. Muller – I can’t wait to watch the future of Saab with your capable and business savvy hands at the wheel!

There may even be a small and incredibly sporty little Saab coming in the future, with inspiration from something like the old Saab Sonnet.  Very cool!

1974 SAAB Sonnet 3 - inspiration for a new Saab?

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Responses

  1. Can’t wait for snow/ice to feel the experience in my (first) and new-to-me ’09 9-3!

    Thanks for the video synopsis!

    A rabid CT fan 😉


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