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Saab bolsters parts supply

Going spare: Customers worried about the availability of spares for Saab models like the 9-5 will welcome the news of a renewed commitment from the Swedish parts operation.

Australian Saab outfit becomes spares business as surviving parts division expands

Saab logo21 Mar 2012

By HAITHAM RAZAGUI

THE spare parts division of stricken Swedish car brand Saab has established a new office in Trollhattan and recruited around 50 staff in an expansion designed to help keep an estimated 1 million Saab cars around the world on the road.

Saab Cars Australia (SCA) managing director Stephen Nicholls told GoAuto the organisation will remain the importer and distributor for Saab parts in Australia and New Zealand for the foreseeable future.

“We are all waiting for the final word on what the future of the company is going to be,” he said. “Until such time we are restructuring to be a parts business.”

Saab Automobile Parts AB (SAP) escaped last year’s bankruptcy of its parent company and has managed to stay in uninterrupted operation to keep supply lines flowing across the globe.

Among the recruits to be based at the new Trollhattan office are engineers and parts specialists and the unit will be responsible for purchasing, sales and marketing of spares, supplementing SAP’s headquarters and warehouse operation located in Nykoping, 350 kilometres to the east.

SAP supports a global network of authorised Saab repairers, which consists of around 1200 workshops that provide parts, accessories and technical support.

 center imageLeft: Saab Cars Australia (SCA) managing director Stephen Nicholls.

Mr Nicholls said SCA “continues to provide a full range of aftersales support for the Australasian network”.

“The last few months have been a busy and challenging time for all of us at Saab. We now believe we can demonstrate that we have a stable base to develop our business.”

He said there are a small number of Saab cars that are still waiting for onward sale in Australia and New Zealand and that fortunately all the dealers are multi-franchise.

“Obviously (the dealers) are putting their focus in other areas for the moment and continuing to do the Saab parts and service as best they can.”

As GoAuto has reported, Saab’s stalled production line temporarily resumed operation earlier this year to complete part-built vehicles for sale to museums and enthusiasts.

Rumours have circulated that India’s Mahindra & Mahindra and China’s Dongfeng have shown an interest in the company’s assets.

In December SCA suspended factory warranty cover on its customers’ cars after the collapse of the company in Sweden, but according to VFACTS figures, this has not stop eight customers buying Saab cars to the end of February this year.

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