GM 's bosses have sent out a downbeat message on Saab's future despite production at the company’s Trollhattan plant restarting today and the company saying it is still assessing offers from bidders.
Speaking at the Detroit motor show, GM chairman and acting chief executive Ed Whitacre said: "We're closing down Saab. We're winding it down."
GM vice chairman Bob Lutz said GM would press ahead with closing down Saab unless a new bid emerged that was "financially better for us than the wind-down."
However, depsite the negative tones, the comments do not appear to move the shutdown of Saab any closer or further away, but rather reaffirm the actions begun last Friday, when GM hired AlixPartners, the restructuring firm that assisted in its US-government backed bankruptcy last year, to handle the wind-down of Saab.
"The offers we've received so far in terms of risk and financing up-front just have been as good as winding it down," Lutz said. "For years GM has been procrastinating when it comes to Saab. I'm glad to see that for once GM is sticking with a decision to wind something down."
However, a GM Europe spokesman told Autocar: "We're running both processes [the wind down and negotiations for the sale of Saab] in parallel, and one process doesn't preclude the other," he said. "There's no deadline for the decisions, we want to analyse the bids thoroughly, although time is of the essence.
"We want to do what is right by the bidders and by the Saab organisation. There's no change in the current situation."
The restarting of production in Trollhattan was scheduled to complete orders of the 9-3 and current 9-5. Meanwhile, work on the new Saab 9-5 build also restarted, as Saab has a small scale production facility for the car at its base.