Koenigsegg buys Saab

Posted on 16 Jun 2009 by The Manufacturer

Supercar maker Koenigsegg leads a consortium that has agreed a deal to buy fellow Swedish automotive firm Saab from the troubled General Motors.

GM Europe will continue to support Saab during an extended handover period, it is understood, and the Swedish government will underwrite £365m worth of funding from the European Investment Bank (EIB) to enable the deal to go ahead.

No word has been released on how much the consortium will pay GM for Saab but the deal is expected to be completed by the end of September.

GM and Koenisegg will work together to launch new product lines which are already being developed. These will include the latest version of the Saab 9-5 executive car which will be manufactured in Trollhattan, Sweden.

“This is yet another significant step in the reinvention of GM and its European operations,” said GM Europe President, Carl-Peter Forster. “The proposed agreement will enable us to maximise the brand’s potential through an exciting new product line-up with a distinctly Swedish character.”

Saab employs 3,400 people at its factories in Sweden and has 100 staff at its UK headquarters. Last year it sold 93,000 cars, although its year-on-year sales in May 2009 were 65.7 per cent. Conversely, Koenigsegg employs just 45 people and produces just 18 cars. The latter’s vehicles have an average £900,000 list price though.