The first customer-ready Saab 9-3 Aero models built since the firm’s rebirth have left the Trollhattan factory for delivery to Swedish distribution partners.
The cars will be located in around 20 Swedish cities and run by Saab partners to offer test drives: the firm is now an online-only direct sales company so has no dealers.
Partners will support the test drive facility with order and purchase support, says Saab: buyers will order online and collect their cars from the factory in person.
The delivery of the first cars off the line is another major landmark for Saab, which is now part of a holding company called New Electric Vehicle Sweden that’s majority owned by Hong Kong-based National Modern Energy Holdings Ltd.
As the name suggests, the longer-term aim of the firm is to roll out electric versions of the familiar 9-3, currently sold as a 2.0-litre turbo petrol model.
These, it is hoped, will be launched in spring 2014 – and Nevs part-owner Qingdao has already placed an order for 200 of them.
Want to buy a new Saab 9-3 and don’t live in Sweden? Bad luck: you can’t, yet. Most of them are headed to China and the Swedish sales operation is deliberately small-scale (hence the factory collection scheme).
But as the firm says, “the journey of Nevs has just started… an exciting future awaits”…