Saab managing director Jan Ake Jonsson and cohorts leave as part of wind down
13 January 2010

Saab managing director Jan Ake Jonsson and the company's entire board will be replaced with immediate effect, as part of GM's wind down process.

However, Jonsson, who joined Saab in 1973 and became MD in 2005, will remain with the company and assist restructuring firm AlixPartners with the company's closure. This process is expected to take several months.

GM has also stressed that it is still negotiating to find a buyer for Saab, and the hardline stance of chairman Ed Whitacre during the Detroit motor show is being taken as a message to potential bidders Spyker and Genii that they must improve their offers.

Saab spokeswoman Gunilla Gustavs told Automotive News: “There is still the possibility that the negotiations on the bids will result in a decision to sell Saab in its entirety.”

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13 January 2010

Prolonged death by a thousand cuts for Saab metaphorically and in reality.

13 January 2010

Well this is really showing the right message that GM wish to sell SAAB and that it is a viable business. I wonder how much marketing this will cost to reverse the damage done if the company is sold?

€1 Million for each day Saab is in wind-down?

13 January 2010

Would it not make sense for GM to simply state exactly what they wanted for Saab and the terms and conditions that muct be met? Rather than what seems to the outside world as a game of cat an mouse but with a hidden agenda!!

At least then the various bidders could decide if they could meet th criteria or not. The cynic in me sya's that th GM board is split some want the sale and some do not, and there are members on the board who are not pro anything European especially if it could become competition.

13 January 2010

The problem is, can Saab, a manufacturer of approximately 100'000 upper-middle class sedans a year survive on its own? Even if investors can show that they have the money, how long can they last? It costs hundreds of millions of dollars to create a new model, when you're only making 50'000 examples of that model a year, it's very difficult to be profitable.

Porsche is the only brand that thrived making approximately that many cars a year. But they're in a totally different segment and can recuperate way more of their developement costs per car they sell. And even Porsche had it's alliance with VW (if not, there would have been no Cayenne and no profits).

The Koenigsegg bid was good because they had a Chinese manufactuer behind them.

If a manufacturer was bidding, it would be much easier for GM. But here, all the bidders are "investors". The last time a brand was sold off to "investors" or "management", they failed big time (Chrysler/Rover).

This doesn't mean that Saab cannot survive alone, but it does mean that there is quite a big risk involved.

Having said all this, I think GM made a mess with Saab, the brand is such an asset, they just can't see it. I also think that selling Saab to the fittest bidder is still the right thing to do, even if there is some risk involved.

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