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SAAB

‘Chinese Saabs’ soon to hit showrooms: report

The Chinese version of the old Swedish Saab 9-5 has come far enough in development that manufacturers are saying it will make the cardealerships' floors at the end of the year.

'Chinese Saabs' soon to hit showrooms: report

Beijing Automotive Industry Holding Corporation, BAIC, part of Beijing Automotive Group, is planning to start selling its first model based on the old Saab 9-5 platform purchased from Saab Autmobile AB in 2009 at the end of the year, according to the China Automotive News.

The car, which is known as C709, is fitted with a 2.0-litre turbocharged gasoline engine.

According to China Automotive News, BAIC plans to launch a complete product line-up based on the Saab 9-5 platform, which was purchased from Saab in 2009, over the next few years. The pricing for the new car has not yet been revealed.

BAIC also bought the platform for the Saab 9-3 and the company has previously said that the Chinese model T60, which is based on the platform will be produced during the second quarter in 2012.

BAIC is owned by the Chinese state and has its headquarters in Beijing.

The company has several Chinese manufacturers and shares its production with Korean Hyundai and German Daimler.

As late as last weekend, Saab enthusiasts collected funds to purchase the last remaining Saab 9-3 manufactured in the now defunct Saab factory in Trollhättan in western Sweden.

Saab Automobile petitioned for bankruptcy in the Swedish courts in December 2011 following along process which resulted in the failure of a Chinese consortium to complete a takeover.

India’s Mahindra and Mahindra, and China’s Youngman, are the latest Asian firms to be linked with a prospective buyout of the loss-making Swedish firm.

TT/Rebecca Martin

twitter.com/thelocalsweden

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CARS

Former Swedish Saab bosses appear in court

Swedish car maker Saab's former CEO Jan Åke Jonsson and the firm's former head lawyer Kristina Geers have appeared in court in Vänersborg in west Sweden, accused of falsifying financial documents shortly before the company went bankrupt in 2011.

Former Swedish Saab bosses appear in court
Saab's former CEO Jan Åke Jonsson. Photo: Karin Olander/TT
The pair are accused of falsifying the paperwork at the height of the Swedish company's financial difficulties at the start of the decade.
 
A third person – who has not been named in the Swedish media – is accused of assisting them by issuing false invoices adding up to a total of 30 million kronor ($3.55m).
 
According to court documents, the charges relate to the firm's business in Ukraine and the paperwork in question was signed just before former CEO Jan Åke Jonsson resigned.
 
Both Jonsson and Saab's former head lawyer Kristina Geers have admitted signing the papers but denied knowledge of the Ukranian firm implicated in the case.
 
All three suspects deny all the charges against them.
 

Saab's former head lawyer Kristina Geers. Photo:  Björn Larsson Rosvall/TT
 
Saab filed for bankruptcy at the end of 2011, after teetering on the edge of collapse for nearly two years.
 
Chief prosecutor Olof Sahlgren told the court in Vänersborg on Wednesday that the alleged crimes took place in March 2011, when Saab was briefly owned by the Dutch company Spyker Cars.
  
It was eventually bought by National Electric Vehicle Sweden (Nevs), a Chinese-owned company after hundreds of staff lost their jobs.
 
The car maker, which is based in west Sweden, has struggled to resolve serious financial difficulties by attracting new investors since the takeover.
 
In October 2014 it announced it had axed 155 workers, close to a third of its workforce.
 
Since 2000, Saab automobile has had no connection with the defence and aeronautics firm with the same name. It only produces one model today, the electric 9-3 Aero Sedan, mainly targeting the Chinese market.