Saab Officially Done For, Liquidation Coming

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D. Gilson is a writer and author of essays, poetry, and scholarship that explore the relationship between popular culture, literature, sexuality, and memoir. His latest book is Jesus Freak, with Will Stockton, part of Bloomsbury’s 33 1/3 Series. His other books include I Will Say This Exactly One Time and Crush. His first chapbook...

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UPDATED: Mar 13, 2020

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Saab was officially founded in 1937 with the express purpose of building aircraft for the Swedish Air Force as it became apparent that Europe would again fall into war.

And as World War II came to a close, the company looked for ways to diversify away from building weapons. Cars seemed a natural, and their first offering, the Saab 92, went into production in 1949.

The years that past never saw Saab outgrow its penchent for providing low-volume automobiles, despite selling more than a million Saab 900s.

Those years did see changes in ownership, and it seems fitting that former owner General Motors, which had announced its intentions to shutter the brand if they couldn’t sell it, dealt the company its final blow by refusing to allow a Chinese investor to purchase the company.

Even though GM had given up ownership of Saab, the two companies still had agreements concerning technologies – most of which were owned by GM. General Motors refused to allow Saab to transfer these technologies to a Chinese buyer, ending the company once and for all with the official filing of bankruptcy coming today, December 19, 2011.

While we’re certain that the name Saab may be purchased, we’d consider it nothing more than a pipe dream that the automaker itself will survive. They’ve essentially been out of business since March of this year, and the filing is for a complete liquidation.

So long, Saab. You provided an interesting 64 years of automotive history.

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