Saab sold to Spyker, 9-5 & 9-4X in production
After announcing the imminent closure of their deadbeat Saab division, General Motors has now sold the long-running Swedish brand to Spyker, the niche exotic manufacturer from the Netherlands whose Russian investor connections had the General stalling all this time over concerns of technology transfer.
Spyker Cars is forking over US$ 74 million to GM up front, along with letting GM pocket a further US$ 326 million in “preferred shares” from the new Spyker-owned entity. The deal also requires that the Swedish government agree to guarantee a US$ 562 million loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB), which is expected to take place in February.
As part of the agreement, Spyker’s Russian chairman Vladimir Antonov has agreed to step down, even though the Cold War has been over for two decades now, and GM isn’t even in the nuclear-bomb business.
Reports also suggest that Saab had already started limited production of the new Saab 9-5 and the as-yet-unreleased Saab 9-4X crossover, in expectation that the brand will survive.