Well firstly Saab has made a profit at least once under GM ownership, but everyone knows why Saab has not made profits every year is simply because of a lack of funding. GM has canceled many very promising concepts and designs. When the revised 9-3 was launched in 2003 there was a Sedan, Convertible, Wagon, XWD Wagon and a Coupe in the pipeline, the xwd Wagon and the coupe were not far from getting the approval before GM sai NO. So thus the Sedan, Convertible and eventually the Wagon were introduced progressively between 2003 and 2006. Later this 2009 the XWD Wagon named 9-3x will finally be up for sale, this has taken far to long to come to market considering it was thought up in 2003.
Another mistake GM has made with Saab in terms of underfunding and poor management is the 9-5 model, this car was due in Saab's eyes to be revised from the ground up in 2006, however GM said NO and instead Saab's design team were put hard at work trying to make the existing 9-5 look brand new, in my opinion they did an incredible job considering their budget and time.
I forgot to mention yet another hiccup with GM's underfunding and poor management of Saab and that is the 9-2x. These cars were disasters from the start. The 9-2x came first in 2005, basically GM wanted Saab to get another model to market as quick as quick can be so they used Subaru's WRX Imprezza as its base. The 9-2x received very little exterior changes, the front received a cool new look however the back was pretty much untouched. The interior was also mostly untouched by Saab, however they did change the writing on the digital displays to Green on Black to give it a more 9-3 feel. The real changes from the WRX to the 9-2x are under the skin, Saab changed alot when it comes to road performance, they tuned the suspension to make it handle better on the road and more minor things like that. The car was aimed at the young businessman and at the American market only. There were only around 10,000 built so they are pretty rare. There was talk of bringing the model to Australia but Subaru admitted that the 9-2x would destroy the WRX!
Now to a more successful story about GM's money management, the 9-7x which came out in very late 2005, this car is designed of the GM 360 platform which is shared by the Chevy Trialblazer and the Oldsmobile Bravada! Saab really tried hard on this car. They moved the ignition to the centre to be like a true Saab as with the 9-2x they didnt bother. They used the 9-5's cup holder design and also the 9-5's distinctive wood grain in the dash board. The front of the 9-7x is very sporty and looks like a true Saab, as with the 9-2x Saab's designers didnt do allot to the rear, it looks identical to the Oldsmobile Bravada! The 9-7x is still on the market today and while it technically isn’t a Saab I think it looks pretty cool and it is currently Saab's second best selling car in the states behind the 9-3! I could chat all day about the 9-7x and the 9-2x so Ill leave it there but if you have any questions Id like to hear from you.
If you think Saab's 9-7x is badge engineered with other GM cars, then think, what is Acura to Honda, what is Lexus to Toyota? Lexus and Toyota have done 'badge engineering' on plenty of occasions and nobody has said anything but when a poor old car company that tries its hardest under tough conditions every one cries fowl!