It’s clear that Koenigsegg intends to push the Saab brand upmarket, increasing prices by almost 50% in the next 6 years.
We’ve covered Christian von Koenigsegg’s quest to take over Saab a fair bit this year. All that seems to be firmly on track with the finance sorted and partners – including China’s BAIC – on board. But what direction are Koenigsegg planning on taking Saab? You won’t be shocked to learn that they are aiming upmarket.
It was hard to believe that Christian would want to get deeply involved in the ‘Pile ’em high, sell ’em cheap’ end of the market. And frankly that would never work. Saab’s need to be positioned as something special – a notch above the regular offerings. And it now seem clear that is exactly what Koenigsegg intends doing with Saab.
Saabs United are running a thread at the moment discussing the leaked plans for Saab’s future. And they actually make a lot of sense. They talk of new models including an electric Saab 9-3X that will be launched in 2012, followed by hybrid-versions of the 9-5 and 9-3. The basic premise is:
2010-2011: present phase
115.000 cars sold gives break-even financially
Average price per car: 189.000 SEK
2012-2015: transformation phase
80.000 sold cars gives break-even financially
Average price per car: 208.000 SEK
New models including a 9-5 Koenigsegg Edition
2016 – : premium phase
65.000 sold cars gives break-even financially
Average price per car: 280.000 SEK
New models including a New 900
The cost per car figures are pretty skewed as they are quoting dealer wholesale prices without local taxes. But the increase in the average price of a Saab over the next six years is pushing on 50%, taking Saab up in to Mercedes, Audi and BMW territory – if not above. Which might seem a big ask but – and it’s a big but – if Saab can start to be the innovative company it once was all over again it is doable.
And of course the beauty of pushing upmarket is that sales can decline but the company remains profitable. Yes, Saab will have to offer some innovative technology to justify the move and they’ll have to bolt on a lot more goodies, but if the break-even point comes in 40% less than it does at present it has to be a good way to go.
Good luck to Christian, Koenigsegg and Saab. If anyone can project a new image for Saab and succeed in repositioning them in the marketplace it’s probably Christian and his partners.
And at least he’ll have the whole of Sweden on his side.
Source: Saabs United