• Mar 30th 2010 at 8:27AM
  • 13
Spyker's association with ex-company chairman Vladimir Antonov is what almost kept the Saab deal from happening. But after a high-profile bid to clear his name (still waiting on the report, Mr. A) and the scent of euros on the table, you didn't really think Antonov was just going to walk away, did you?

The Russian said in an interview last week that Saab was looking to build a production plant in Russia and will sign a memorandum of understanding to that effect "within a month." Another report has put potential production of such a facility at 10,000 cars per year.

Spyker CEO Victor Muller has had nothing to say on the statement. Naturally, we have no idea if Saab is looking for a Russian plant, but we'd be shocked (not for the first time, we admit) to find it were doing so "within a month." We'd have a much easier time believing that Spyker wants to get the new 9-5 and 9-5 SportCombi selling briskly and a better 9-3 on the way before it makes huge increases in production capacity in Russia. But that's just us...

[Source: Moscow Times]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      That's what a Saab interior would look like, were it designed and built in Russia. :-D

      Saab has, or has had plants or made cars in Sweden, Belgium, and Austria. What do they need another plant for?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Just thinking about every Russian car in the history of the universe, please, my dear Saab, don't do it.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I can't wait to see the J.D. Power ratings for Chinese Volvos and Russian Saabs. This is like the best news Land Rover has heard in a decade.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Let's not forget that plenty of cars are already being made in Russia to feed a strongly-growing market and overcome protective tariffs. GM makes Chevys and Opels, Ford's in, Renault, BMW...why can't SAAB?
        Same goes for China, where GM is making truckloads of money (which then proceeds to burn in the US bonfire) with Chinese Buicks, BMWs are made by Brilliance, Audis have been made for God knows how long (80's)...smart moves, if you ask me, and about time for Volvo to get serious about what will become the World's largest market in a decade.
        It's a global economy out there, gentlemen.
        • 5 Years Ago
        It would be a heckuva deal for consumers for both China Volvo and Russia Saab to make their cars first class and price them to get market penetration up the ying yang!

        The distribution and service channels already exist in the US although they will deteriorate rapidly if Geely and Spyker don't move quickly.

        This is a great opportunity to enter a worldwide market....IF they invest in it. I can see Geely/China doing it, Russia, not so much. OTOH, I recall Antonov's efforts to defuse his association with the Saab deal and the Swede's objection to him (mobbed up, don'tcha think?) so maybe the Russian deal will work out.

        The technology transfer issues are a whole 'nother kettle of fish.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Since when is Saab assembling cars in Belgium???

      There is only a Volvo, Ford, Audi and Opel plant located.
      (The Opel plant will probably be shut down in a couple of months.)
        • 5 Years Ago
        Not sure if they still do, but some of the Saab 99 and the 900's were assembled there. My friend has a Belgian-built 99, and they say they are more prone to rust than the Swedish built ones, I believe due to inferior zinc-coating. There's your fun fact for the day.
      • 5 Years Ago
      SAAB consists of exactly one factory. Various speciality cars have been outsourced to Valmlet in Finland and most recently Magna-Steyr in Austria. Pre-series NG 9-5's were made in Rüsselsheim, but none of those have been for sale to the general public so they don't count.

      Other than that the General in his infinite stupidity thought it was a good idea to slap on a Saab badge two products not made in the single Saab factory, a Subaru made somewhere in Japan and a Trailblazer built in I don't know, inbreeding-land or wherever they build those.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Maybe they should see how sales go first before expanding plants.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I dunno. Somehow I don't see Saab increasing its production capacity at the moment.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Surely they can't be serious...
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