There’s a lot of discussion going on in Sweden about SAAB and the future of the car. The brand is worth a lot according to many. And of course we have the discussion about lay-offs. No one want them. But then again, SAAB has never (besides two years) been profitable.

If I skip the ethic, keeping-the-jobs-perspective and put myself in the leading chair of GM. What would I do? Well, I wouldn’t sell the blueprints and all the tools you need to manufacture the latest construction made by the corporation. That would be to create your own competitor to Opel. It might be ethically correct and of course great for all the workers in Trollh√§ttan, but just stupid if you want your corporation to carry on.

Actually, if I were Ed Whitacre I would do what GM always had done; badge engineering.

I would close down the manufacturing of the non-profitable SAAB. Keep the brand and put its trademark on the cars that might need it. It has been done before with the 9-2X and 9-7X. They did it with that stupid looking Cadillac based upon the 9-3 Estate. They have done it with Buick, Chevrolet, Cadillac…they have done it with all the brands they have. Why not do the same thing with SAAB? Have one construction, change badges on the hood.

It’s true. Many people laugh when the badge engineering goes to far at GM:s headquarters. The 9-7X was such a moment. It has been many more. GM don’t recognize that the brand is not what we say it is, it is what they say it is. And with “they” I mean anybody outside GM.

Then again, let’s say that I am still Ed Whitacre I also might say that “we would need some proper brand management here at GM” and hire FIAT’s brand manager who successfully kept the FIAT, Lancia, Alfa Romeo, Maserati and Ferrari brands apart. I would still keep the SAAB brand, and close down the production of the cars.

Sad. But probably the right thing to do.

Tags: ,

Delicious Digg Facebook Google Buzz LinkedIn reddit StumbleUpon Twitter Email Print Friendly

Leave a comment