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Supercar maker pulls out of deal to buy Saab

Koenigsegg's exit means Saab's future is in doubt

Saab 9-5

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Swedish supercar maker Koenigsegg has pulled out of a proposed deal to buy Saab from General Motors.

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General Motors (GM), which also owns Vauxhall and Opel amongst a number of other automotive brands, is said to be ‘disappointed’ by the news. 

Koenigsegg first announced its interest in purchasing Saab in June. The exact reasons for the deal’s collapse remain unclear at this stage, but it seems a delay in securing the necessary finance has forced Koenigsegg to withdraw.

Koenigsegg was said to require 3 billion Swedish kroner – around £250m – which it initially hoped to receive in loan from the Swedish government. It was actually promised the money by Beijing Automotive Industry Holdings in September, but this may have come too late.

There also appears to be some disagreement between shareholders about what to do with Saab once acquired. Whatever the reason, the deal is now certainly off.

Bleak news for Saab?

GM President and CEO Fritz Henderson made this statement about the news:

‘We’re obviously very disappointed by the decision to pull out of the Saab purchase. Many have worked tirelessly over the past several months to create a sustainable plan for the future of Saab by selling the brand and its manufacturing interests to Koenigsegg Group AB. Given the sudden change in direction, we will take the next several days to assess the situation and will advise on the next steps next week.’

What this means for the future of Saab is at this stage uncertain. But many industry experts are predicting the worst – suggesting that if another buyer cannot be found quickly it may well be the end of Saab as a viable carmaker.


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