Production of the Saab 9-3 has restarted today at the firm’s Trollhattan plant in Sweden, under the new ownership of National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS).
The announcement comes two years after the brand filed for bankruptcy. Saab called time on production back in April 2011, then under the control of Dutch firm Spyker – after its supply chain broke down thanks to mounting unpaid debts, and Spyker also filed for bankruptcy by December of the same year.
After that, NEVS bought Saab out of bankruptcy and in September 2013, the manufacturer started to produce new pre-production prototypes of the 9-3. Saab has now announced regular production of the saloon has begun, albeit at a ‘humble’ - in other words much reduced - pace.
These models will use the same 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engines as before the collapse, but the plan is for an all-electric version to be launched at some point next year. It will initially be aimed at the Chinese markets and feature a facelifted exterior - with first cars to roll off the line already ear-marked for Government agencies in that country.
Although this new car will be badged as a Saab, NEVS is forbidden from using the famous Griffin badge, as part of an agreement reached with the brand's previous owners and creditors. There are rumours that they aim to launch an all-new 9-3 in time for the 2015 Frankfurt show, but this is unconfirmed as yet.