Saab Confirms Next-Generation 9-3 To Be Built In Trollhattan
By Kevin Miller
General Motors announced last week that production of the next generation Saab 9-3 will occur at Saab’s factory in Trollhattan, Sweden. Saab staff was informed of the news last week by GM Europe President and Chairman of the Saab Board Carl-Peter Forster. The next 9-3 had been rumored to be produced in GM’s Ruesselsheim, Germany plant.
“This is obviously extremely positive news for our organization and the region and a clear signal of the confidence in our ability to deliver world class production quality and efficiency”, says Saab Automobile Managing Director Jan Åke Jonsson. “Since we had been allocated production of the next generation global Compact Vehicles in April of 2007 it’s really good to know we can start focusing on building a range of next generation Saab 9-3 vehicles”. The plant in Trollhattan currently has roughly 1700 employees.
Saab fans were happy to hear the news, as many Saab fanatics consider Saab vehicles built outside of Sweden to not be “real” Saabs. Sources indicate that production of the long-awaited replacement for the Saab 9-5 will occur in Ruesselsheim alongside Opel models. Disadvantageous exchange rates between the US dollar and the Swedish kronor have Saab (and GM) looking to production outside of Sweden to minimize exchange losses. For that reason, Saab’s upcoming 9-4X crossover will be built in Mexico, which should help offset exchange losses of vehicles built in Europe.
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