By on January 11, 2010


Between the tooling for the old Saab 9-5 being shipped off to China and GM “starting” the wind down process, even the most optimistic, “fuel tank is half full” members of the auto world are starting to think that it’s “game over” for Saab. Well, here’s the final nail (barring a completely audacious bid, from an equally audacious company, who want to spend millions of pounds on a damaged brand) in the coffin of Saab. The Local, a Swedish website, reports that GM are officially killing all plans to bring the new 9-5 to production. “It would be so sad that it never sees the light of day despite the fact that it’s a fantastic car,” admits GM vice chairman Bob Lutz.
Commenting on the suggestion that the 9-5 could come back as a Buick, Bob Lutz showed the world why he’s goes by “Maximum.” “No, that’s completely wrong. It’s not going to be a Buick. Not in the United States, not in China and not anywhere else,” he says. Ok, Bob! Don’t blow a gasket (insert GM reliability joke here). I mean, it’s not as if Buick are going use any rebadged cars, are they? The article states that “according to Lutz, GM would rather shut down Saab Automobile than sell it to a company the US auto giant didn’t believe in.” Or, as Lutz puts it, “we’ve pushed the wind down button and now we intend to wind down the company.”. But Lutz, being Lutz, couldn’t leave it at that. This is a man who said that “Global warming is a crock of s***,” “Hybrids don’t make sense,” “We meet or beat (imports’) reliability or in the case of Toyota, even been turned upside down” and that anyone wanting to spend money on Nissan (when it was teetering on the verge of bankruptcy) would better stick it on a ship, sail it into the sea, then sink it. So, given those quotes, how did Bob Lutz choose to give Saab its final send off?

“If you want to earn a small fortune on Saab, you have to start with a huge fortune.”

If all of this weren’t enough to convince you that Saab’s near-death experience has officially become a death experience, Ed Whitacre confirmed it to Reuters at the Detroit Auto Show, saying “we’re closing down Saab.” “Rather an end filled with terror than terror with no end,” explains Bob Lutz. How much more explicit can it get? Good thing we’ve already said our goodbyes

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29 Comments on “Saab Officially Flatlines...”

  • avatar


  • avatar

    More pressure on the bidders and the Swedish Government to get something done fast.

  • avatar

    Well Lutz was essentially correct about global warming:  in that the alarmist wild claims, bad science and money/power grabs are a falacious and harmful.

    • 0 avatar

      “Well Lutz was essentially correct about global warming:  in that the alarmist wild claims, bad science and money/power grabs are a falacious and harmful.”
      FleetofWheel, do you always ignore scientists or are you a shill for the AGW denier sites?

    • 0 avatar

      I deny alarmist, non-scientific claims.
      I like science.
      Science is on my side, you are the denier.

  • avatar
    Mr Carpenter

    I’ve seen other folks on this very website, argue against global warming and seen what the otherwise seemingly intelligent Best & Brightest have said to him or her in return – and came to the conclusion that when it comes to PCness, many people are like lemmings. 

    A few other folks couldn’t resist pointing out the facts over the last little while, including joe sherlock at his .com blog: 

    Global Warming Update … various recent news headlines:

    • ‘Record snowfall in Vermont’
    • ‘100 dead as cold wave sweeps India’
    • ‘U.S. faces record cold weather’
    • ‘New Year freeze, avalanches leave trail of death across Europe’
    • ‘U.S. experiences coldest winter in 9 years in December as snow storms sweep across the country’
    • ‘Air Berlin aircraft ditches into snow’
    • ‘Iowa temps a solid 30 degrees below normal’
    • ‘Thousands stranded at snow-hit Dublin airport’
    • ‘Elderly burn books for warmth’
    • ‘Scotland may slide to halt as snow-fighting salt runs out (longest winter freeze in two decades)’
    • ‘Historic ice build-up shuts down New Jersey nuclear power plant’
    • ‘Peruvian Mountain People endangered by global cooling’
    • ‘Three deaths due to cold in Memphis’
    • ‘Oklahoma displays extreme winter weather’
    • ‘Record snowfall brings chaos to Seoul, Bejing’.

    Would now be a good time to bring up the fact that BHO’s father, being a certified British subject (along with his mom not having adult US citizenship long enough at the time to confer it upon the baby), that our “President” isn’t?  He’s illegal – a usurper. 

    But of course, that little factoid will be “wrong” – until it’s proven to be “right.”  Right?  Right. 

    As for lemmings, I just read that a British guy was arrested in his own home in front of his 11 year old by Bobbies because they thought he wrote an email which included a very mild “anti-PC” slur against gypsies.  (It ended up to be one of his employees).  He spent some time in jail and they “took his DNA” and “will be keeping it” despite his proven innocence. 

    But Britain (and the USA) aren’t fascist states, though, right?  Riiiiiight….

    • 0 avatar

      I smell a bigger troll, a pikey-hatin’ troll

    • 0 avatar

      What part of the word “global” confuses you so much? Newfoundland is having a record warm winter. Alaska is warmer than Florida right now. Texas had its hottest summer on record last year, breaking the record set in 2008.
      I see you are also one of the “birthers.” “Nuff said.

    • 0 avatar

      Wonder how they spell “usurper” on the homemade signs at tea (i didn’t say “bag”!) rallies… could be fun to see

    • 0 avatar

      I saw the same weather headlines in Joe Sherlock’s blog.

      Remember that weather does not equal climate.

    • 0 avatar
      Tricky Dicky

      Mr.Carpenter – your even-handed, balanced presentation of objective facts, devoid of implied meaning or rhetorical assertion, fully but carefully expunging the context for the stories you elaborate to find their deeper significance – well frankly, leaves me breathless.
      Indeed “2 + 2” does equal “purple” and this conspiracy is being worked by the world gov’t who are just puppets of the aliens who survived that whole thing in Area 51. I’m not going to waste another second, just to say I don’t concur.

  • avatar
    Robert Schwartz

    Are there any real or substantial differences among any of the Epsilon II cars?

  • avatar

    I smell a troll

  • avatar

    You only smell one?

  • avatar

    The 9-5 looks like a nice car, which means a lot of money was spent in its development. I wonder whether it, and all that money, will really totally go to waste?

    As for Lutz’s many quotes, give the man a break; he’s really old. Old people say crazy stuff all the time. Most of them aren’t Vice Chairmen of Global Product Development of auto companies teetering on the edge, but…

  • avatar

    sigh, this is a site about cars, not global warming…but nevertheless–
    everything you cite above “Mr Carpenter” is weather, not climate.  Learn the difference.  If  people can process this, you absolutely can have the entire earth be warmer but have lots of areas get more snow/colder weather in the short term.
    In fact, Northern Europe is fucked if the polar ice caps melt, because the only thing that prevents Europe from having the same weather as Alaska or Manitoba is the warm currents of the Atlantic Ocean, which would be diluted by increased fresh water from the melting ice caps.
    If anyone thinks this is all everything in the news from BHO to global warming is a scam, just put all your money into gold coins and buy some guns and land in idaho.  Everyone will be better off for it.

    • 0 avatar
      Mr Carpenter

      I understand the difference between weather and climate.  I also have done a significant amount of reading about how natural solar (and thereby, natural ocean) cycles occur. 

      Now, go read up on the Maunder Minimum, then look up the other solar minimums which occurred relatively close to / prior to it.   Also look at what happend to the Thames in London (which is salty even that far inland) – it froze over.  Also look at what happened to food production and the depravation and starvation that ensued.  We have genuine concerns to look at – and we’re spending time using spy satellites looking at polar bears.  How imbecilic can it get? 

      Then please go look up how many (or in fact, how FEW) solar flares we are having right now, when we are “supposed to be” at roughly a level of 25 solar flares per day if the “usual solar cycle calendar” were holding true.  Newflash:  it’s NOT.  I’ll save you the trouble – we’re lucky to have ONE solar flare per day.  

      Interestingly enough, once again, we’re at what I describe as “common sense.”  From where does the heat for earth come?  The sun.  What happens when the sun naturally goes through a cool cycle?  The earth cools.  It’s not magical thinking or pseudo-science.  It’s actual, verifiable real science. 

      Yes, sir, I do understand the difference between “climate” and “weather.”  I also understand how to interpret the facts when “climate expert scientists” lie about their figures and get caught doing it, and understand how TPTB try to cover it up via the mass media and politicians. 

      As for my “test” as to how well people on this website are able to withstand “thoughts outside the mainstream” – most of you failed.   The quality of commentary and free thought on this website has dropped since Robert left, sadly. 

      “trolls” indeed.  I won’t stoop to name-calling, but if you folks can’t debate with intellect instead of stooping to that, then I have no time to waste in discussions. 

      As a friend of mine says “you can’t fix stupid”.   I won’t say if he’s right or wrong, as if I did I’d be name-calling, wouldn’t I? 

    • 0 avatar

      trucosm, to the contrary, if you really believe in AGW, then act like it.
      Stop driving a car, go vegetarian and live at a near subsistence level to minimize your carbon foot print.
      But none of you Wamers actually do that because deep down, you really don’t think that catastrophe lies ahead.

  • avatar

    Seriously, will this company finally just up and die already so I don’t have to keep hearing about it? Saab’s been on life support longer than Terry Schiavo, and its chances of returning to health are just as bad (if not worse) than her’s were.

  • avatar

    Here comes the troll! (well, saab-crap):
    Why are so many people whining about SAAB?
    Pontiac was a much better brand overall with lots of quirky gems throughout it’s history (at least for us po-foke) . . .  at least Oldsmobile got a better send off.

  • avatar

    when did i miss the fat lady’s singing?

  • avatar

    I haven’t been able to read back through all the posts and commenst from Bertel on this one, and I know saabunited is pretty adamant in the position that new 9-5 tooling is already gone to China, but it seems to me the Swedish government is just waiting for the firesale after the bankruptcy and they’ll reconsitutue Saab from that. After what GM put the German government through on Opel, why would they negotiate before the liquidation, with GM legal you’re just wasting your breath.

  • avatar

    Pontiac was a good brand back in the 60’s when it had it’s own engineering division and designers. Its spent the last 40 years selling badge engineered crap from the other GM divisions or rebadged Kia’s, Toyota’s, Daewoos’s and others. Whatever legacy and brand currency it had has been destroyed courtesy of GM.

  • avatar
    Mr Carpenter

    Have to agree with you ffdr4.  Pontiac was an even larger “player” in Canada, back in the day, when something like 4 Pontiacs to 5 Chevrolets were sold in the country (I’m referring to the Pontiac heyday, the 1960’s).  Of course, Canadian Pontiacs were distinctly different from American Pontiacs back then, too. 

    I owned one Saab, one time.  The head gasket blew on me stranding me on a family vacation.  It was the first head gasket I’d ever had let go on my.  I called it the “amateur motor company” for evermore after that.  So I’m not sorry to see it go, to be honest! 

  • avatar

    Saab should die.  Get over the sentimentality; it’s a losing business.
    I agree with Maximum Bob on AGW, but those who cite recent cold snaps as evidence against AGW are as disingenuous with data as those who cite recent warm spells.  CO2 is plant food, its 350 ppm abundance has always varied, and has negligible effect on the ability of the atmosphere to trap heat.

  • avatar

    Gee… just like Lutz and the rest of the incompetents at FUGM, very few here can keep their eye on the ball either. Once again Lutz, GOOD FING LUCK selling your V6 and 8 beige spacklemobiles when fuel goes back over $4. And your 4 cylinders aint that hot either.

    Killing Saab is like killing all the pretty women because weve already got too many ugly ones. The industry over-capacity is in Japan, Korea , USA, Canada, China and Germany by and large…NOT western Sweden.

  • avatar

    What does this do to incentives on new SAABs?
    Is it possible I can roll down to a dealer and buy one for the price of a new hyundai?
    That would be an interesting gamble

    • 0 avatar
      John Horner

      9-3s and 9-5s are selling at $9-$10k discounts off MSRP. Around $26k should get you a mid-trim level 9-3. That is still about $3k more than the selling price of a Sonata V-6 Limited with all the goodies.

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