According to an official statement from the spokesman for the Chinese-backed consortium that took over the ailing carmaker last year, Saab-branded cars will begin to roll off assembly lines in Sweden as early as Monday.
Saab belonged to US car giant General Motors until the beginning of 2010. It was later taken over by Dutch boutique sports carmaker Spyker. Saab was declared bankrupt in December 2011 after efforts to reorganize the business and find new investors failed. Production was halted several months earlier.
Production would take place at the Trollhatten plant, said Goran Fredriksson, the spokesman of the consortium – National Electric Vehicle Sweden AB (NEVS). Production will start with a petrol-engine version based on the mid-sized Saab 9-3, a model that was discontinued in 2011.
Hong Kong-based National Modern Energy Holdings is the majority shareholder of NEVS, with a 78 % stake. The investment arm of the city of the eastern Chinese port city Qingdao, Shangdong province, owns the rest. NEVS, which bought Saab out of bankruptcy in August 2012, also plans to build all-electric cars next year, but has not stated when production is due.
Fredriksson added that NEVS management would be on site Monday to present additional details of how many cars are to be made, the number of employees and other information. In recent months, NEVS has assembled several test cars in preparation for series assembly and signed contracts with suppliers.