Saab History

Saab is a troubled Swedish manufacturer currently owned by Spyker Cars. The company was started in 1947 and merged with Scania, a commercial vehicle manufacturer in 1969. Saab employs some 3,400 people and is headquartered in Trollhattan, Sweden; in 2008 the company made an operating loss of 300 million euros against production of a little over 90,000 cars. Saab is also known as a pioneer in the areas of automotive ergonomics, safety and turbocharging, and it enjoys a close relationship with the aerospace industry via the Saab Aerospace company.

In 1989 GM acquired a controlling stake in Saab, but its own financial woes in 2008 led it to look for a buyer for Saab, failing which the Saab brand would be killed off. After on-and-off talks with a few bidders, including supercar maker Koenigsegg, Saab was finally rescued in 2010 by another supercar manufacturer from the Netherlands, Spyker. It is hoped this will result in much-needed stability and allow Saab to concentrate on what it does best- building cars, instead of being distracted by buyout talks and worries of closing down. One definitely good sign is that the company has already announced rollout of a new version of the 9-3 model in 2012.

Saab Models

The first of the New Zealand offerings is the 9-3, a compact-executive car. The 9-3 is available in a huge range of choices: sedan, wagon and convertible- all with a choice of 2.0 turbo, 2.8 turbo, 1.9 turbodiesel, and even a 2.0 turbo ethanol-capable engine (dubbed BioPower). The only other car on sale is the 9-5, an executive car to take on the likes of the BMW 5-series, Mercedes E-Class and Audi A6. Needless to say, the 9-5 is nowhere near its competitors in sales volume, in large part because of Saab’s financial troubles. The 9-5 is available as a sedan or wagon, but only with a 2.3 litre turbo engine.

Looking at buying a Saab? Check the vehicle history of any Saab by entering its number plate in the field above.