Yes, it's a publicity stunt, but at least Spyker is serious about Saab's heritage
Saab and Spyker may have only just got into bed together, but the top executives of the two companies are already planning to get cosy in the cockpit of a historic Saab 93 rally car.
The plan is for Spyker boss Victor Muller and Saab CEO Jan Ake Jonsson to tackle the Mille Miglia in a 55hp, 748cc two-stroke Saab 93 similar to the car that took class victory in the 1957 road race. The announcement has been made at the Geneva motor show, where the historic 93 is sharing stand-space with the all-new Saab 9-5.
"Unique cars like the 93 are a key part of the Saab brand's wonderful heritage," says Victor Muller. "I shall enjoy driving it and being able to share in some of Saab's history."
Muller and Jonsson's planned adventure is a clear sign that Spyker wants to take Saab back to its roots with future models. The quirky 93 is a world away from the conventional new 9-5, and reports doing the web-rounds suggest that future Saabs (the first of which is expected to be a small hatch) will owe more to the teardrop-shaped cars of the 1950s than more recent Saab offerings.
Quite how Spyker - a company that last year produced just 45 cars - will cope with the challenge of running a volume car maker remains to be seen.
Nonetheless, Spyker remains bullish and confident. "One thing we do know is how to build a brand," says Spyker's marketing boss Hans Van Rennes, "And Saab already has a great history on which to build."
Saab could help out Spyker in other ways, too, as Van Rennes explained to PH at the Geneva show: "We currently have 1100 Saab dealers worldwide. If just 5 per cent of those signed up to sell Spykers, too - something we're looking at doing - we would more than double our global dealer network."
Like the look of that new 9-5 too (loved my old 9-5, hated my 9-3 Aero - utter garbage).
G0ldfysh04 Mar 2010
good luck to them hope they can produce cars a bit more distinctive
dele04 Mar 2010
Fair play and good luck
soad04 Mar 2010
Best of luck to Saab. Old rally car looks sweet.
patmahe04 Mar 2010
If more high up guys in car companies actually drove the cars (old and new) that they built and so understood the ethos of the manufacturer and it followers better, it would lead to better more distinctive cars all around.
At least this shows Spyker are not only serious but interested in SAAB's past and future. Good luck to them.