reports that Saab
has joined up with the Swedish government to create a new company to produce automatic transmissions. The task is being funded by Fouriertransform AB, the Swedish government's venture-capital arm, and Saab will provide around 50 powertrain engineers to tackle the nitty-gritty. Called VICURA, the company will build gearboxes for Saab and any other automaker that wants to farm out powertrain work, while helping Saab generate cash outside of its car sales. According to Jan-Ake Jonsson, Saab chief executive officer, the move is essential for getting the ailing automaker back on firm financial footing.
The partnership is just the latest in a number of similar ventures undertaken by the Swedish automaker. Saab hitched up with American Axle in September to build electric all-wheel drive systems and other hybrid
components. Similarly, BMW
inked a deal with the company to supply engines for its future products in the same month.