Next Saab 9-5 So Good, GM CEO Fritz Henderson Doesn’t Want to Sell Swedish Automaker


Apparently General Motors CEO Fritz Henderson thinks the upcoming Saab 9-5 is so good, he doesn’t want to sell the Swedish automaker. In an interview in Sweden’s Expressen magazine he declares that he’d rather see Saab fail in bankruptcy court than sell off the brand.

The magazine cites an unnamed source within Saab, who says Henderson does not want the 9-5 as a competitor in the future. Internal GM testing has apparently shown that the car is far superior to a major competitor, the Opel Insignia – which the source says the Germans at Opel confirmed.

The article goes on to suggest that because of how good the upcoming 9-5 is Henderson would prefer to see Saab sold to Fiat along with the rest of GM Europe – an arrangement that could either see GM retaining a stake in GM Europe, or gaining a stake in Fiat.

We do, however, have a hard time believing that with Saab’s niche market status and small production numbers that any major automaker could see the company mounting a significant threat.

[Source: Saabsunited]


WooDz says:

I can’t but believe there is a bit of truth in this news. There has always been animosity by OPEL workers when SAAB Deutschland moved from Bad Homberg to Rüsselsheim. This only underlines that GM’s intentions were to rape SAAB of their technology and engineering know-how and starve them of any competitive products. When SAAB tried to produce the bet vehicle they could with the current 9-3. GM quickly pulled the plug on any further vehicles such as the 9-3x and a 9-3 coupe. For the Turbo X; SAAB were not allowed to develop the engine above 280hp as it would have more power than OPEL’s Vectra OPC.
The main point is that GM still can’t realise that SAAB will never be a competitor to OPEL. The 9-5 is better because it not only has to compete against Audi and BMW but also to offer the quality associated with the premium that will be levied against it.

Ingram Powell says:

Saab’s value to FIAT is as a premium FWD brand that has value in the USA.
The Alfa Romeo brand can (just about) be re-launched as a premium RWD brand on the Tata/FIAT RWD platform, but if FIAT attempts to relaunch the Alfa Romeo brand using the current FWD lineup, the cars will be unmasked as wannabe frauds. BMWs, Infinitis and Lexuses are just too good.
Current Lancias and Alfa Romeos could, however, be restyled and sold Stateside as “Saabs”.

JP sweden says:

The best bet for GM is to focus small cheap mass vehicles, this is tough truth GM but they must face facts they barely made decent trucks and that sucked all of there focus and talent from the rest of the company leaving the flunkies to run the car divisions. Then in there wisdom, when things went bad for truck and they couldn’t understand there owne markets they solved it by firing everyone in truck. So, the ones who are now left are the flunkies from the car division. Now, sorry but how many premium cars have GM produced that a, true performance b, make a profit c, maintain resale d, feel like true quality materials
Lets look at this hmmmm perhaps one Corvette the rest do not turn a profit and you not find and much material in anything GM as they will never pay for it.
Sorry GM but but maybe you should take the last few pennies you have left and go to China