Having managed to stave off its own bankruptcy by partnering with a handful of government-backed entities in China, National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS), which acquired the assets of bankrupt automaker Saab in 2012, is now flush with cash and ready to proceed with its plans to launch a new generation of electrified cars.
Speaking at the Stora Bildagen automotive conference in Sweden last week, NEVS President Mattias Bergman announced the company planned to launch four new vehicles using Saab technology, including the Phoenix platform originally developed for a new generation of Saabs. Part of his presentation was a slide that showed sketches of the four vehicles, which you can view in full at Saab Blog.
The four vehicles will ride on the Phoenix platform and include three SUVs plus a sedan with a fastback roof. NEVS refers to them as the Active All-Rounder (small fastback sedan), Distinctive Family SUV (small SUV), Urban Adventurer (small SUV with coupe-like styling) and Sporty Urban SUV (compact SUV). In addition to these four vehicles, NEVS plans to continue building the former Saab 9-3 sedan but with an electric powertrain.
Interestingly, the vehicles aren’t referred to as Saabs, as NEVS is still seeking permission to use the actual Saab name after losing the rights last year (it’s owned by a consortium of firms that includes the Swedish defense group also known as Saab).
Should all go to plan, NEVS will restart production of the 9-3 at the former Saab plant in Trollhättan, Sweden by as early as 2017. The first of the next-generation models will start production the following year. In addition to Trollhättan, NEVS will also build cars in Tianjin, China.
Sales will take place in China and Sweden initially, but the plan is to eventually expand sales to the rest of Europe and even the United States.