Electric cars provide hope for a sustainable future, but they also may be providing hope to save a bankrupt company. The bankrupt Swedish car manufacturer has an agreement with a Chinese-Japanese investment group to be bought out, and the group aims to take the manufacturer in a new direction.
Saab has been a failing company and generally unprofitable for nearly 20 years. Although many consumers report being happy with their Saab vehicles, due to a variety of factors the Swedish car manufacturer has been unable to make a profitable business. Well known for making the 9-5 Sedan and 9-4X crossover, Saab halted production in March 2011 and filed for bankruptcy in December; dark times for anyone employed by Saab. But there is light in the east. With new ownership for Saab, and a plan to reform the company into a manufacturer of electric vehicles there is hope that thousands of jobs can be saved and a well-known car manufacturer can rise from the ashes.
Two large, powerful investment firms combined resources to acquire Saab. A Hong-Kong based renewable energy power-plant builder National Modern Energy Holdings. NMEH bought the majority share of Saab, 51%. And the other major investor was Japanese investment firm, Sun Investment. The two groups pooled resources in order to purchase Saab and take it in a new direction.
A statement issued recently by a spokesperson for National Electric Vehicle Sweden said that they are aiming to be a leader in electric vehicles. Potentially a very wise choice because it is still a relatively young market with room for large car manufacturers to establish themselves. Saab would be competing in a market with the Chevy Volt, the Karma hybrid gasoline-electric sports car.
Initial reports have been unable to clarify whether Saab will be pursuing a more everyman sedan electric vehicle, or the pricier route that companies such as Tesla opted for. News has been confirmed that the first vehicle will be an electric modified version of Saab’s 9-3 car, but company officials are being tight lipped regarding pricing and other information. The car is schedule to go on sale in early 2014.