Saab’s Owner Postpones EV Launch for Gasoline-Powered Vehicle image

Saab’s new owner, National Electric Vehicle Sweden, will launch a gasoline-powered vehicle, postponing its EV launch.

“We are evaluating the possibility to start production around next summer of a 9-3 with a traditional powertrain,” said Mikael Oestlund.

He also said that the decision was taken after several talks with Saab’s former component suppliers and that National Electric Vehicle Sweden will produce this vehicle in order to raise cash and maintain consumer interest before the EV sales beginning in 2014. NEVS bough Saab earlier this year after it was forced to file for bankruptcy in 2011.

The National Electric Vehicle Sweden said that it plans to produce battery-driven cars based on Saab’s 9-3 technology and add a Phoenix platform at Saab’s plant, located in Trollhaettan, Sweden. All NEVS cars will have the Saab emblem until the company will create its own, unrelated to the automaker’s previous griffin emblem.

In September NEVS announced its plans to introduce its first EV based on the Saab 9-3 and that production was to begin in about 18 months, with the main focus being on the Chinese market.

“In approximately 18 months, we plan to introduce our first electric vehicle based on Saab 9-3 technologies and a new-technology electric powertrain,” said Karl-Erling Trogen, National Electric Vehicle Sweden AB chairman.