When the latest 9-5 model of Saab Automobile AB goes on sale on June 19, the carmaker will go on a marketing campaign in the second half of 2010 that's worth over $150 million. Saab also revealed that it may terminate about 10% of its dealerships to lower costs.
Adrian Hallmark, executive director of sales, said that Sweden customers can expect to experience "a huge wave of media and communication" that will begin when the 9-5 starts selling on June 19. He mentioned that since the sale by GM, Saab has spent "nothing" on promotions.
Saab considers the new 9-5 to be crucial in its target of becoming profitable by 2012.
Next week, Saab will release the 9-5 in Belgium. The car will be released in the Netherlands the following week, while other markets will soon follow. In the US, the car will go on sale in early August.
Hallmark added that the decision to spend this much on promotion was arrived at as Saab made plans to cut the number of dealers from about 1,000 down to a number between 50 and 100 by the end of 2011.
He explained that eliminating these dealerships will decrease expenses, including manager visits to dealers, shipping, training and support.
He cited further that if 10% of the dealerships are removed but still have the same volume, "the dealers make more money" and Saab's expenses will drop. [via autonews]