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marketing/publicity was weak, from what i remember from that era.
VW ads were always special and memorable. Most Volvo ads too.
Saab needed a publicity "nuke", something to remember.
(Fast try :lol: It's no nuke!!)
The ad misspelled "company" and likely wasn't published.
 

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I honestly think that the main thing that killed SAAB was their marketing and PR management. It was very poor. Being a car enthusiast all my life I never heard of SAAB until my brother in law wanted to buy one in 2013. I read up on them and was amazed. I was just like wow "SAAB IS SO AWESOME , I wonder what they are making now.... what HOW CAN A COMPANY THAT BUILT THE FIRST REAL MASS PRODUCED TURBOCHARGED CARS BE OUT OF BUSINESS... LITERALLY EVERYTHING IS TURBOCHARGED NOW... THESE GUYS KICKED *** IN THE WRC IN the 70s". I read up on cars, watched videos e.t.c. for decades... and I knew absolutely nothing about SAAB or that they even existed. I can look at many SAAB's and can confidently say that there were much ****tier cars being produced when SAAB's were in production and those crappier products seemed to have a bigger market success. Really do wish there was a way for SAAB to come back without this NEVS nonsense which just seems like vaporware (and a way to just use the SAAB name on substandard vehicles meant only for china). If every SAAB enthusiast chipped in $100 it maybe feasible to bring back SAAB (or at-least kick start it back to life). The main problem i'd see is that they would need access to all their old IP at-least and a new fresh platform (phoenix) but it's all just dreams for now. They really did make great products in my opinion.
 

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Although the demise of Saab saddens me the business failed for the most basic of business reasons which are highlighted in the reports below.

http://www.saabplanet.com/who-killed-saab-automobile/
That was a good read. I however do think they would have pushed more volume if they approached more brand awareness/marketing and public relations. They didn't do much marketing or PR imo. The report basically states (it's 40 some odd pages so i don't want to make it seem like this is all it states) that they had had ok profit margins and low volumes compared to say audi who had high volumes and higher profit margins - I feel if they had the marketing in place they would have definetely pushed more volume. The Audi's built in the 02 Model year have proved to be some very finicky and problematic vehicles... however due to PR and Marketing they were able to push their Quattro image off. SAAB needed something of the sort for their Turbo image... They just didn't push for awareness imo.
 

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Although the demise of Saab saddens me the business failed for the most basic of business reasons which are highlighted in the reports below.

http://www.saabplanet.com/who-killed-saab-automobile/
That was a good and thorough analysis. Although I think the author is too quick to brush aside GM's role in Saab's demise. Saab did a great job at taking mediocre GM platforms and turning them into something interesting, but at the end of the day it came down to ensuring quality of parts and components and that is something GM clearly lacked.

Owning the NG 9-5 illustrates the quality problems with GM quite well, with buttons peeling off, squeaks from break pedal and things like seat heaters breaking after only a few years. These aren't things you'd expect to occur in a near luxury car. On the other hand, the design and style are incredible.... I just hope it lasts.
 

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That was a good and thorough analysis. Although I think the author is too quick to brush aside GM's role in Saab's demise. Saab did a great job at taking mediocre GM platforms and turning them into something interesting, but at the end of the day it came down to ensuring quality of parts and components and that is something GM clearly lacked.

Owning the NG 9-5 illustrates the quality problems with GM quite well, with buttons peeling off, squeaks from break pedal and things like seat heaters breaking after only a few years. These aren't things you'd expect to occur in a near luxury car. On the other hand, the design and style are incredible.... I just hope it lasts.
I agree with you on the GM components typically being the quality/deal breakers. They probably spent so much money making the GM platforms viable, which made them have to cut corners in other areas. However that being said I can look at cars like a 2002 Audi A6 and see that they have their fair share of quality issues as well. The main thing being Marketing imo. Hell in 08 SAAB sold under 30k cars. Pontiac managed to sell nearly that much Aztek's the ugliest most shoddy built car ever. Marketing is a big player in this arena. The article even cited that SAAB missed a big marketing opportunity to play on european "Muscle" with their turbo cars. If they played their cards better with Marketing I have no doubt that SAAB could have been the Swedish Audi (except more reliable imo).
 

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...Saab did a great job at taking mediocre GM platforms and turning them into something interesting...
I'm not sure the Global Epsilon platform can necessarily be described as mediocre? It was developed by Opel in Europe, and there are some pretty good cars on that platform.

Aside from the Trailblazer 9-7x (which was only an attempt to make more money on trucks), that was really the only GM platform a Saab was ever built on (9-5 on Epsilon II later on). I'll leave the 9-4x out of this since less than 500 were ever made.
 

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I'm not sure the Global Epsilon platform can necessarily be described as mediocre? It was developed by Opel in Europe, and there are some pretty good cars on that platform.

Aside from the Trailblazer 9-7x (which was only an attempt to make more money on trucks), that was really the only GM platform a Saab was ever built on (9-5 on Epsilon II later on). I'll leave the 9-4x out of this since less than 500 were ever made.
The problem is that the platform's needed to be modified in order to better compete with the Audi A4/3 Series e.t.c.. This caused them to cut corners (due to the platform modifications needed). For example the 9-5 uses the GM2900 platform... which was essentially the same platform they used for the 9-3 ... however it needed to be lengthened for the 9-5, then it needed the proper safety modifications... then it needed the proper chassis modifications to make it more suitable to be sold as a premium car. So in esscense they modified platforms for use cases that were never intended. The 9-3SS is another perfect example of this... they took the epsilon platform and by the time they were done with it it barely resembled that platform. Those kinds of modifications left them with less cash I am sure to spend on higher quality materials e.t.c.
 

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So may reasons why and such a long time of wrong things going on. Even before GM owned them, SAAB's were targeted at a small market of people (they were not intended for everyone) - just watch the commercials. Although many models were safer than Volvo's, SAAB is known for being quirky and "don't those things have electrical problems?" - All I ever hear from people when I tell them my 06 wagon is a SAAB. Think about what a car company is known for and then what SAAB's are known for - Nothing that makes you want to run out and buy one.

GM/SAAB/Whomever kept the same power-train(s) for decades while everyone else was refining things, improving power and moving to direct injection. Where was SAAB's innovation then? Then GM just started using their universal chassis and lets throw in a SAAbaru and a TrailSAABer for poor measure making pure SAABists cringe at the thought it was even produced. As soon as those models came out the writing was on the wall. Nobody does things like that unless they are desperate to make money on a product. My wagon is basically a Saturn L-Series and the new Cruze is basically a redesigned and de-contented 9-3. Think either of those could hold a candle to an Audi or a BMW?
 

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So may reasons why and such a long time of wrong things going on. Even before GM owned them, SAAB's were targeted at a small market of people (they were not intended for everyone) - just watch the commercials. Although many models were safer than Volvo's, SAAB is known for being quirky and "don't those things have electrical problems?" - All I ever hear from people when I tell them my 06 wagon is a SAAB. Think about what a car company is known for and then what SAAB's are known for - Nothing that makes you want to run out and buy one.

GM/SAAB/Whomever kept the same power-train(s) for decades while everyone else was refining things, improving power and moving to direct injection. Where was SAAB's innovation then? Then GM just started using their universal chassis and lets throw in a SAAbaru and a TrailSAABer for poor measure making pure SAABists cringe at the thought it was even produced. As soon as those models came out the writing was on the wall. Nobody does things like that unless they are desperate to make money on a product. My wagon is basically a Saturn L-Series and the new Cruze is basically a redesigned and de-contented 9-3. Think either of those could hold a candle to an Audi or a BMW?
Do you have evidence of this?
 

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Some small truths in a jumble of misinformation.

A Cruze is based on a Daewoo. Nothing , not even a carpet fibre came out of the 9-3 for that car. It's been a success for GM even though the car makes me cringe and the GDI motor is another Asian design nothing of Saab.

The Saab engines GM Powertrain did a great job with the LNF LTG LDK were all GDI variations of the SAab 2.0 with forged cranks and rods and a nice DOHC hemi combustion chamber all a tribute to the good stuff Saab and GM got together on

The L series was a common platform that of course Saturn needed as a basis for its mid sized sedan

The fact is manufacturers like VW have basically one or two platforms at the most to build cars off. Multiple platforms is insane from a cost/benefit analysis. Even then it took GM some years to figure out the the Camaro should be built off the ATS platform.

Regardless of how badly things were managed at GM , and for sure the Subaru and trailblazer iterations were pathetic, the engineers,and the true believers did what they could for all the models produced. Bad management and greed cause their woes and bankruptcy , and it's headed there again. Chrysler will fall next unless th carpetbagger CEO can find someone to buy or join with his money losing FIAT empire.

Anytime you are selling 60,000 dollar pick up trucks on a 74 month term and folding in the last payments of the trade in to make a sale, you are in trouble.

The paper being written now, is close to junk just like 2008. " 199 biweekly/ zero down/ zero to driveway /first months payment on us" is all part of this.

Back in 2008 folks were driving king ranch fords owing 75,000.

As soon as gas prices go back up this market will collapse if not sooner


So my advice is don't spend too much time blaming GM and their hapless short term management for Saabs problems. Saab did a lot of it to,themselves. Our job as owners is to figure out how to keep these lumps going forever, because there is nothing out there that has the performance, safety, fuel economy and style all wrapped up,into one package at a decent price.
 

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Although the demise of Saab saddens me the business failed for the most basic of business reasons which are highlighted in the reports below.

http://www.saabplanet.com/who-killed-saab-automobile/
Thank you for posting that link CJ. It is a thorough multi-faceted analysis that I hope many on here will read. I have corresponded with Professor Oliver recently and he informs me that he and Professor Holweg have just published a book on the subject:

Crisis, Resilience and Survival: Lessons from the Global Auto Industry

Chapter 6 details the demise of Saab and updates the findings and analysis contained in the monograph to include events occurring subsequent to NEVS acquisition of Saab. I have a copy on order from Amazon.

It turns out Prof. Oliver is a Saab man himself.
He got his first Saab when he was was 19 and has had many Saabs over the years. He still has a 1997 Saab 9000 2.3 CSE turbo that he has owned for the last 16 years. He is one of us, guys.

 
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