Fans of the dead Swedish brand, sob no longer, SAAB is being resurrected, by the Chinese. National Electric Vehicles Sweden has purchased the defunct company with plans to sell to China and Sweden next year. While their plan is to produce the decade old 9-3 Aero with an electric motor, NEVS has made sure to also secure the right to the original 2.0 liter turbocharged gasoline engines, producing 220-horsepower.
Only a thousand vehicles of each body model will be allowed sell in Europe due to the 9-3 falling short of Euro NCAP tests in regards to pedestrian safety. The initial market focus will be on China. This is good, considering both the Chevy Volt and Nissan leaf have fallen well short of their projected sales. With the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration investigating the safety of lithium-ion batteries with growing concerns over reported fires in the Volt and Fisker’s Karma, don’t expect to be finding any new-old 9-3’s on sale in the states anytime soon.
Nor should you expect to see the old Griffin badge. NEVS do not have the right to that logo. SAAB logotype will be replacing that badge on the front of the sporty sedan. Here’s to hoping that the Chinese bring back the old ad campaign, reminding all of us, that they build jets.