National Electric Vehicle Sweden, Saab’s buyer, has signed an agreement with the Chinese city of Qingdao to build a new Saab plant there.
In 2012, National Electric Vehicle Sweden AB (NEVS) has purchased the majority of Saab assets, which went bankrupt after failing to clinch several investment deals and run out of money. The deal was signed by Qingdao Investment, State Power Group, and NBE Sweden AB and it stipulates that a new $1.6 billion plant will be built in the city and will manufacture new energy and gas powered cars under the Saab name.
”Vehicles based on new energy sources are the future. Qingdao wants to take an active part in this development,” said Zhang Xingi, Mayor of Qingdao.
NEVS announced it plans to release its first EV at the beginning of 2014 and it is also considering relaunching the Saab 9-3 model, fitted with a conventional engine. The company aims at producing EVs in China, as authorities here are beginning to invest heavily in this segment.
The Saab factory in Qingdao will be the first plant in the Shandong province to have passenger car production qualification. The companies will invest $1.6 billion to build this plant, which will produce 400,000 vehicles per year when fully finished and an initial production capacity of 200,000 vehicles annually.
”This agreement provides financial resources that form an important contribution to enable implementation of the NEVS business plan,” said NEVS Chairman Karl-Erling Trogen.