In what would arguably be the first optimistic news for Saab faithful out of General Motors in some time, Reuters is reporting that GM has extended its December 31 bidding deadline for the 60 year-old Swedish marque – a move that will actually trigger the restart of some of the company's production lines next month.
Reuters indicates Spyker Cars' chief executive Victor Muller (head of the company believed to be in the lead position in the bidding war) has let slip that GM has extended the deadline until January 7, and Muller reportedly believes that there are still several parties involved in the bidding process.
Adding credence to Muller's statement is word that Saab spokesman Eric Geers has been quoted as saying that Saab's production lines will fire up on the new 9-5 sedan (above) and the 9-3 convertible: "We have the orders and we have to deliver them as usual. We also have the orders for the 9-3 and others. The factory has to continue again... we are preparing the wind-down process. At the same time we are open to options, to bids that come in. Therefore the deadline has also been dropped."
Looks like industry analysts and Saab loyalists will have to wait until early next year for a conclusion to the sales saga. Will there be cheers and gears in 2010, or jeers and sneers? We're not sure yet, but once the dust settles, we're looking forward to someone chronicling this whole sordid affair in a nice, thick book. Thanks for the tip, Ed!