ZF will supply Sab with a new front sub frame and five-link rear axle for its new Phoenix platform
18 March 2011

Saab and component maker ZF have officially announced the component tie-up first revealed by Autocar earlier this week.

ZF Chassis Systems is to open a factory just three kilometres from Saab’s Trollhattan HQ, which will supply the new front sub-frame and five-link rear axle that will underpin the Swedish carmaker’s new Phoenix platform.

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According to the company, large sub-frame pressings will be stamped out at the Trollhattan press shop and then taken to the ZF Sverige plant, where they will be welded together and fitted with chassis mountings. Suspension and brake components will also be fitted to the rear suspension to form complete rear axle assemblies. These units will then be taken back to the factory for installation on the production line. Around 50 people will be employed by ZF Sverige AB.

Moving production of the front and rear suspension systems close to the Saab factory will reduce shipping costs and the need for stockpiling. With Saab bodies now being built in Sweden, along with much of the suspension and chassis, the car maker will reduce costs and the exchange rate risks associated with importing components from Continental Europe and the wider Euro zone.

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ZF Sverige is also hoping to supply components to Volvo, whose Gothenburg factory is about an hour’s drive south of Trollhattan.

Hilton Holloway

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