Mike Stevens | Sep 29, 2010

BMW SAAB DEAL

Following confirmation yesterday that the two companies had been in talks, BMW has today announced that it will begin supplying engines to Saab from 2012.

Announcing the partnership today, BMW board member Ian Robertson and Saab CEO Jan Ake Jonsson confirmed that the deal would cover the supply of four-cylinder engines for "a new Saab model series."

With engines for the all-new 9-5 and 9-4x models already locked in, the nearby 2012 supply date points to the next-generation 9-3 as a likely candidate, scheduled to be released in 2012.

While nothing more specific was offered, the wording of the statement suggests that the BMW engines may also be destined for an all-new model - possibly the planned 9-2 light car.

“It gives me great pleasure to confirm this exciting new relationship. BMW Group’s engines and their fuel savings innovations are widely regarded as a benchmark in the premium segment. We look forward to integrating this technology into our next-generation vehicles in a true Saab way,” Jonsson said.

Victor Muller, CEO of Spyker, Saab's owner, recently confirmed that the design and specifications of a smaller 9-2 model have been approved, and the hunt is on for a production partner. BMW engines could drive this fourth model.

"We have a design, we have specifications," Muller said. "The only missing link is making the contract with a potential partner and how we are going to fund it. It's currently not in our business plan, but it has a compelling business case."

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