Spyker Details its Future Plans for Saab
Spyker has released a second, even more comprehensive, statement regarding its acquisition of the Saab brand from General Motors. While a good bit of it revolved around clarifying various financial arrangements involved in the transaction, the most interesting part of this presentation provided even clearer insight at what we can expect in the way of next-gen Saab products -- and how Spyker envisions making the new Saab Spyker Automobiles NV operation viable for both automakers. For openers, Spkyer confirmed that it remains committed to execute the original Saab Business Plan that has been developed by the Swedish automaker over the last 10 months. It does, however, expect to add a few enhancements to recast Saab as a "stand-along niche manufacturer" with three to four distinct models that compete against brands like Audi and BMW and generate some 100,000-125,000 units in annual worldwide sales
Kicking things off on the product side will be the new 9-5, a GM-designed and engineered vehicle that's due in showrooms this summer. In addition to a conventional sedan configuration, this flagship offering will be available in a SportCombi wagon as well as a 9-5x variant -- a luxo CUV in the Audi Q5/BMW X5 mold. Next to surface will be another GM-developed model, the new 9-4x compact crossover that makes its debut in Geneva and goes on sale both in Europe and America early next year. The final for-sure member of the reinvigorated Saab squadron will be an all-new 9-3, due in 2012 and likely to be available in at least base and 9-3x configurations. Under consideration is a smaller 9-1 line, although Spyker admits that its fate depends on the continuing expansion of the small-car segment and on the availability of adequate development funding.
As part of the new operation, Spyker says it will fully leverage all of the design and development assets available through Saab's Technical Development Center in Trollhattan. It also intends to aggressively exploit all newfound economies of scale as well as its current -- and future -- involvements with GM for the benefit of both Saab and Spyker vehicles. Beyond yielding improved access to various other component and system suppliers, it anticipates the new two-into-one corporate structure will yield ancillary benefits in the area of potential sharing of certain mechanical elements as well as of other high-value assets, including the sales, support and marketing capabilities of Saab's existing 1,100-member global dealer body.