6. Saab Declares Bankruptcy
Had this Top 10 list been slightly longer it might have also contained a requiem for Maybach, but as its not, we’ll stick to the death of Saab as our fifth biggest automotive news story of 2011.
Founded in 1947 as an arm of the Saab aerospace company, Saab Automobiles had a mixed history before being bought by General Motors in 1990 where, if not success, it at least had a stable life. Cut loose under GM’s restructuring it was sold to Dutch exotic car maker Spyker, with its survival in doubt ever since. In fact, Saab’s rollercoaster like business story, from Chinese investors and ties to the Russian mafia resulted in more headlines for the Swedish automaker in 2011 than probably the entire rest of its history.
Headlines couldn’t save Saab, however, and on December 19th it officially filed for bankruptcy. RIP Saab.