Saab is very optimistic that it will attract US customers, despite problems

Article by Christian A., on July 7, 2011

Saab has struggled from cash issues and the stoppage of production at its Trollhattan, Sweden, plant, but despite that, its executives are confident that it will still be able to appeal to customers.

At Saab’s North American headquarters in suburban Detroit, Saab Cars North America President Tim Colbeck said that the carmaker is coming out with a grass-roots marketing campaign that centers on the “heart, brain and wallet.”

Colbeck added that Saab has to move away from marketing vehicles based on price. Instead, it has to concentrate on raising the enthusiasm for its vehicles.

Colbeck addd that its target is to discover ways to connect with owners on an emotional level that inspires passion. He explained that Saab will eventually have annual sales in the U.S. of 30,000 units.

Saab still has to overcome several obstacles though. Last month, Swedish Automobile NV (the parent of Saab) was compelled to find the funds to pay its workers in Sweden and as suppliers were unpaid, production had to stop for most of the summer.

Swedish Automobile said that the plant is expected to open again on Aug. 9. A 28 million euro ($40 million) deal was approved by the Swedish government to sell 50.1% of its plant to a group of Swedish real estate investors.

Further funding commitments have been secured by the company in recent weeks. Colbeck said that production has resumed for the 9-4X, a new crossover by Saab that’s being built by General Motors in Ramos Arizpe, Mexico.

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