Saab Shuts Down Production Again--With No Restart Date Set

April 6, 2011

Production lines at Swedish automaker Saab have shut down again, for the fourth time in two weeks.

The automaker has stopped production, according to a report from Agence France-Press (AFP), until it can stabilize its financial situation.

Last week Saab stopped building vehicles three separate times after suppliers balked at overdue bills for parts.

Today's stoppage has no set end date, as a Saab spokesman told AFP the company was waiting to confirm an agreement for additional investment.

Saab was divested by General Motors (NYSE:GM) early in 2010 after the American automaker filed for bankruptcy. The very survival of the Swedish company had been in doubt, until a last-minute deal to sell Saab to Dutch sportscar maker Spyker was underwritten by $500 million in loans granted by the European Investment Bank, and guaranteed by the Swedish government after much debate. 

Earlier this week, company head Victor Muller sought to quell talk of Saab's imminent demise after the production stoppages and after the announcement that longtime executive Jan-Aake Jonsson would retire in May.

Saab sales fell to about 32,000 units worldwide last year, far short of the global numbers it managed (up to 130,000 units a year) under its former corporate parents at GM. 

[AFP via Yahoo! Autos]

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