How much to save the Saab Bilmuseum? How about $4.1 million.
According to Radio Sweden, the Saab car museum got a last-minute reprieve when the Trollhattan (city) Council, Saab AB and the Marcus and Amalia Wallenberg Memorial Fund joined to buy the Saab car museum and its collection of vintage Saabs and memorabilia. Trollhattan is the headquarters of bankrupt Saab Cars and where until last spring all Saab cars in production were being built. As we reported last week, as a part of the company’s liquidation the contents of the museum, including 131 historic Saabs, would be sold off either whole or in pieces.
Radio Sweden reported that the chairperson of Trollhattan Municipal Board, Paul Åkerlund, said he was delighted to save the museum. Åkerlund said, “I think it means a lot, it is a part of Trollhattan soul. It is also a big tourist attraction.”
The Local reports that Trollhattan is putting up half, while Saab AB, and the Wallenberg family, previous owner of the bankrupt Swedish automaker, will pay the remaining half.
Saab AB is the surviving part of the original Saab Aeroplan AB that remained after 1989, the Saab car division was restructured into an independent company, Saab Automobile AB, which was then bought by General Motors. Saab AB makes commercial and military aircraft as well as various aerospace products.
“We consider it to be of great significance to preserve the Swedish industrial history,” said Carina Brorman, of Saab AB, in a statement. “That the collection stays in Sweden and Trollhattan is important for us, the cars are also a part of our company heritage.”
So if, as it appears likely, that the efforts by the Turks, Indians and (yet again) Chinese prove insufficient to save Saab, at least the Saab Bilmuseum, the Saab car museum, will remain whole and in Trollhattan.