Saab looking for a partner to build a new entry-level car

Article by Christian Andrei, on March 25, 2011

Saab chairman Victor Muller said that the carmaker is still on the search for a partner to help it build a new entry-level car. Saab also wants to build vehicles for other automakers at its factory in Sweden.

Muller told Automotive News Europe that Saab is in talks with other manufacturers to buy a platform or drivetrain technology for this entry-level car, which would be priced at about EUR20,000, and it should arrive as soon as possible - in 2014 the earliest.

In this interview, Muller said, “It should be a car about the size of an Audi A1, and we could sell 30,000 to 50,000 a year.”

He did not say which other automakers Saab is talking to about a potential deal. He said Saab does not want to ask a bank for credit to fund investments for the new car.

He said Saab has a big asset with Trollhättan plant, which has a capacity of 190,000 cars. Jan Ake Jonsson, Saab CEO, said the brand has very ambitious sales goals, with plans to sell 80,000 units in 2011 and 120,000 in 2012.

He said Saab’s business plan relies on low volume expectations and it only needs 85,000 units to reach its break-even level. Saab’s global unit sales reached 31,696 in 2010, compared with 27,482 in 2009.

Muller has said the planned entry-level car will be inspired by the teardrop shape of the Saab 92 model that was built between 1949 and 1956, but will not be retro.

Topics: saab

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