Saab Files for Bankruptcy

Colum Wood
by Colum Wood

Saab’s financial rollercoaster seems to have come to what many have speculated would be its inevitable conclusion, with the Swedish automaker today announcing it has filed for bankruptcy with the District Court in Vänersborg, Sweden.

The news comes as Saab was seeking to reorganize, with the struggling car maker desperate to arrange funding. The most likely candidate had been Chinese automaker Zhejiang Youngman Lotus Automobile Co., which has now announced it can not move forward based on o pposition from General Motors. GM opposed the sale to a Chinese automaker as it owns the technology behind two of Saab’s models and even manufactures the 9-4X crossover for Saab.

Representatives at GM have previously said the American auto giant would look to block any sale based on intellectual property issues, with concerns such a sale could harm its business in China.

“After having received the recent position of GM on the contemplated transaction with Saab Automobile, Youngman informed Saab Automobile that the funding to continue and complete the reorganization of Saab Automobile could not be concluded. The Board of Saab Automobile subsequently decided that the company without further funding will be insolvent and that filing bankruptcy is in the best interests of its creditors,” reads a statement on the Saab website. Along with Saab Automobile, this filing includes Saab Automobile Tools AB and Saab Powertrain AB.

Colum Wood
Colum Wood

With AutoGuide from its launch, Colum previously acted as Editor-in-Chief of Modified Luxury & Exotics magazine where he became a certifiable car snob driving supercars like the Koenigsegg CCX and racing down the autobahn in anything over 500 hp. He has won numerous automotive journalism awards including the Best Video Journalism Award in 2014 and 2015 from the Automotive Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC). Colum founded Geared Content Studios, VerticalScope's in-house branded content division and works to find ways to integrate brands organically into content.

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  • Dan Dan on Dec 23, 2011

    Sad, but not completely unexpected. With GM:s last position this is a global issue rather than a chinese issue. If a german bank/corporation had showed an interest this might have harmed the interest of Opel/Vauxhall and the same situation would have arrised. In all fairness GM have paid for the technology development since 1999 and does have the right to refuse selling its intelectual property. Potentially this situation now gives investors a chance to pick up the pieces of Saab engineering abilities and provide a future for the skilled staff in a new home, even if the brand itself may die. Good luck and fortune to those who own the new 9-4 and 9-5. These will(?) be the last cars of a truly individualistic brand. I hope you enjoy the vehicles and that you are now proud owners of a historical pice that, even though it is based on GM parts, rise well above the feeling and design of ANY GM product made from the same parts. It is a true testament to what the dedicated engineering mind can make from ordinary parts. "Iconic to many, lived by a few"