Green Room

GM’s bailout strikes again: Saab to close its doors

posted at 10:27 am on December 18, 2009 by

Now, it just so happens that I hate Swedish cars. Hate them. Passionately. Fiercely. Their owners, even more so. Hence, I find myself ambivalent that Government Motors’ sinking ship is catching Saab in their riptide.

Unable to find a buyer for Saab after a year-long search, General Motors said Friday that it would begin shutting down operations at the Swedish carmaker.

G.M. had been in final sales negotiations with a Dutch maker of high-end sports cars, Spyker Cars, but issues arose during the due diligence process that made the sale impossible before G.M.’s Jan. 1 deadline, the company said in a statement.

In early November, G.M. also backed out of a deal to sell its European operations, Opel, to a Canadian parts supplier and Russian bank. And in September, G.M. announced that the Saturn brand and dealerships would close after Penske Automotive terminated its deal to buy the carmaker.

G.M. still has a tentative deal to sell Hummer to a Chinese industrial machinery manufacturer.

So let’s recap: billions of taxpayer dollars were poured into a floundering car company. The company continued to flounder. Hundreds of millions more were poured into it. Their reaction: selling off their divisions, piece by piece, to other countries…and other countries aren’t even interested. The centralization of the automotive industry keeps pushing it further into the toilet.

Once again, we find that the small print of “jobs created or saved” really does apply to the “citizens of the world”.

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Combine this with the Opel and Saturn situations, and GM’s inefficiencies compared to other world automakers becomes glaringly clear. For what they want for parts of the company, they can’t even give their brands away (though when you consider how state-run Sweden is considered to be, it will be interesting if it turns out their government is more capitalist than the Obama Administration, and is willing to let the homegrown automaker die than try to step in and bridge the gap with government $$$ until a buyer can be found).

jon1979 on December 18, 2009 at 10:46 AM

Now, it just so happens that I hate Swedish cars. Hate them. Passionately. Fiercely. Their owners, even more so.

Oh. Well…perhaps I shouldn’t tell you…

Diane on December 18, 2009 at 11:19 AM

Somehow I don’t think Saab is going to go away.

That said, what the **** were the Swedes thinking, selling to GM?

Oh, and don’t forget about Holden down under… this riptide will, sooner or later, affect them too.

Mew

acat on December 18, 2009 at 12:01 PM

That said, what the **** were the Swedes thinking, selling to GM?

acat on December 18, 2009 at 12:01 PM

För stort att missa.

MadisonConservative on December 18, 2009 at 12:14 PM

That said, what the **** were the Swedes thinking, selling to GM?

acat on December 18, 2009 at 12:01 PM

Better question, what the **** was Fiat thinking when they bought Dodge? I mean, come on, Fiat, the worst cars in the world buys the ugliest cars in the world.

What kind of record is Fiat trying to break? LOL

Knucklehead on December 18, 2009 at 1:28 PM

Crap, I’ve got a great marketing slogan for Saab ready to roll, too.

Midas on December 18, 2009 at 2:01 PM

Knucklehead on December 18, 2009 at 1:28 PM
—-
I think they’re thinking “Free ca$h from the econ-101-dropout-in-chief and a whole dealer network…”

One of the things Volkswagen-Porsche-Audi have going for them is their dealer network… I could always get parts and find a mechanic for, say, the 1992 Jetta I used to own.. finding parts and a mechanic to work on a Fiat is more challenging.

Besides, what Fiat does (arguably) well are little bitty cars that get good mileage, while what Chrysler does (arguably) well are mommy-vans and a few muscle cars. Given the current fuel efficiency standards, adding the Fiats to the mix lets Chrysler save on building little rattle-trap cars.

Now, if I were to put on my snarky hat, I’d point out that this is going to add a lot of jobs – mechanics, specifically…

Mew

acat on December 18, 2009 at 2:49 PM

Crap, I’ve got a great marketing slogan for Saab ready to roll, too.

Midas on December 18, 2009 at 2:01 PM
—–
Well, it’d be hard to top the utterly stupid “Saab: Born from jets” campaign from sometime in the last 5 years.

Talk about your Saab story …

Mew

(sorry, couldn’t resist)

acat on December 18, 2009 at 2:50 PM

It’s too bad this has happened. We have a Chevy Silverado that’s going strong at 104,000; great ride, reliable, no problems. We love it. Can’t really bear the thought of buying a ‘government’ car, however.

linlithgow on December 18, 2009 at 8:01 PM

Another American Saab story.

GnuBreed on December 18, 2009 at 8:21 PM

I could give a crap about Saab and the Swedes. What concerns me is the sale of Hummer to a communist super-power.

Mr. Arrogant on December 18, 2009 at 11:27 PM