Saab Cross-Wheel Drive ‘XWD’ in the North East, USA

Posted on 06. Sep, 2007 by in 2000-2009

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Saab Cross-Wheel Drive ‘XWD’ in the North East region of the United States

It has been mentioned that 40% of Saab Automobile USA’s market is in the North Eastern part of the United States. This region has historically thrived for vehicles that have facilitated easy accessibility through some of the toughest weather year after year. This year is Saab Automobile’s real chance to promote Cross-Wheel Drive (XWD) in one of their most important markets, the North Eastern region of the United States.

As a native New Englander who grew up with the Saab Automobile in that region having endured some extremely tough winters in my previous days of Saab ownership, the recent availability of Cross-Wheel Drive or “XWD” for the Saab is an extremely important development to me. This new development in Cross-Wheel Drive for the Saab Automobile brand will, without question, require a carefully planned marketing effort, resulting in an aggressive communication of the XWD in that region, to ensure success.

I have put together a number of considerations and objectives that should be included in an advertising and promotion campaign that Saab Automobile USA would need to meet, at a minimum. They are the following:

A) The new cross-wheel drive ‘XWD’ Saab models would need to outsell all other automobile brands that have historically dominated this region in terms of all-wheel drive capabilities. The brands that Saab would need to beat with their Cross Wheel Drive (XWD) system in the North East region are Audi with their Quattro system, Subaru with their All-Wheel Drive as well as Volvo’s All-Wheel Drive vehicles.

B) Saab Automobile would also need to move current owners of the aforementioned vehicles as well as owners of vehicles such as SUVs out of and into the new Saab Cross-Wheel Drive models with the following three-pronged approach:

  1) A strong and consistent advertising campaign on television with great frequency on major news networks, opposed to cable stations in order to provide the best coverage on the target the market that live in both urban as well rural or semi-rural regions that require the cross-wheel drive.

  2) Aggresive real-life test drive promotions during the winter season (think snow & ice) where perspective buyers could experience cross-wheel drive in their own elements in key geographic areas in the North East as follows:

   New York – Albany (New Salem Saab, Kingston (Roberti)

   Maine – Portland (Portland Saab) & Augusta (O’Connors Saab)

   Vermont – Burlington (P.J’s Auto Village) & Montpelier (Crossway Saab)

   New Hampshire – Exeter (Gary Blake Saab) & Nashua (Saab Nashua North)

   Massachusetts – Boston (Charles River Saab) & Deerfield (Pioneer Saab)

   Connecticut – Guilford (Guilford Saab)

   Rhode Island – Providence (Wigwam Saab)

  3) A solid distribution channel through the clear, concise and consistent marketing of the “XWD” program in ALL dealerships in the North East region.

These are some of my developing suggestions in order to ensure that deployment of cross-wheel drive (XWD) in the North Eastern part of the United States is a success for Saab Automobile USA.

I look forward to your comments and opinions on either my suggestions or your own on this topic.

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22 Responses to “Saab Cross-Wheel Drive ‘XWD’ in the North East, USA”

  1. Chris

    06. Sep, 2007

    Rochester, NY also has a decent dealership that they could promote through. I’m not sure of the Buffalo area though.

    Reply to this comment
  2. ryanoe9000

    06. Sep, 2007

    Chris,

    Thanks. What is the name of that dealership as well?

    Reply to this comment
  3. Matt

    06. Sep, 2007

    I think they should have it set up on a slippery course where two other cars, say a merc and a BMW are Just off the rear corners of the 9-3x. when a slippery corner comes up (maybe a moose in the road) they all go into a drag, the 9-3x maintains perfect control, and the BMW 335xi and Merc 4-matic Appear to be doing ok, but end up losing it and spinning out of control, the saab leaving them in the dust!

    Then a computer generated interpretation shows why the saab can maintain control, some man in a lab coat should be superimposed into the animation with a pointer narrating (must have a deep re-assuring voice!)

    Maybe an SUV can be in there too, and it just ends up flipping over

    Reply to this comment
  4. Drew

    06. Sep, 2007

    IMO, while it’s expensive, I think Saab should either back a private rally team or directly campaign a full factory team.

    Rally isn’t really popular in the US as a motor sport, but people do know what it is. Now that GM isn’t associated at the same level as it was with Subaru, the door should (possibly?) be open to some form of support. Rally is also inline with Saab’s heritage, as much, if not more-so than airplane manufacturing.

    It would be great to see something like an ad campaign where shots of normal people doing normal outdoorsy things with their XWD car (like loading up friends and equipment and climbing a snowy mountain to a ski resort) were split with a Saab rally car ripping up a high climb in the same bad weather.

    For even more fun, GM could campaign a Sport Combi as well as an SS. The SS could be shown pulling into posh restaurant valet areas with young fit mid-40’s early 50’s in evening ware getting out of the car in the rain, contrasted with short shots of big open exhaust 4 wheel drifts on tarmac in the rain. The SC could show groups of younger people doing things that younger people do, like stuffing the car full to move out of their apartment into a house…in the woods. Tell two stories with similar backgrounds and weather conditions in each at the same time.

    Saab owners are active, vibrant, successful, do-it-yourself type people. Show that! Show that lifestyle with hip music in the background for the young folks spots, and maybe good old rockin’ classic rock for the older crowd. And while you’re showing that, feature brief cut-ins of aggressive, loud, rip snorting AWD Saabs, with no music except GM’s sweet Eco-series straight 4 cylinders wailing (never mind that the new hot engines are 6’s, people won’t care).

    Do it! The new Product supports it! Remake Saab’s image into something that’s inline with the lifestyles of people that drive Saabs already—and also inline with the lifestyle of people that should be driving Saabs but just don’t know it yet.

    Reply to this comment
  5. Saaboy

    06. Sep, 2007

    A fellow Saaber recommended this style of ad for the new 9-3…

    “Post apocolyptic snow scene. Hundreds of people climbing out of overturned and burning SUVs.

    Saab 9-3x slaloms thru the horrifc scene. With a dead deer for food strapped to the hood.”

    yes!

    Reply to this comment
  6. saabSean

    06. Sep, 2007

    A montage of SAAB rally cars being thrown about through dirt and/or snow, leads into a present day view from above (helicopter) of an XWD enhanced SAAB running up a snow covered road which is lined with trees. The SAAB is sliding the tail a bit through corners. The announcer is explaining that SAAB has a history of sporty handling in less than perfect conditions.

    Cut to a ground level view of the SAAB, the viewer is keeping pace with the side of the SAAB. You can see multiple occupants, possibly some skies atop the car. Close cut to the rear wheels and the viewer can see rooster tails of snow coming from the wheels. The announcer explains that SAAB is moving to the next level of sporty safety with the introduction of XWD.

    End view of the SAAB disappearing around a bend, hanging the tail out, large rooster tails from the power slide. The announcer informs the viewers of the availability of XWD and then ties it in with a thought provoking comment regarding arriving to the ski chalet in time for a fireside drink.

    Reply to this comment
  7. ryanoe9000

    06. Sep, 2007

    These are all very good ideas, let’s keep them coming.

    It sounds like we’re all in agreement about the nature of the advertising and promotions, so that’s exciting.

    If any of you are so inclined, it would be nice to see some of these television advertisement suggestions that some of you have mentioned with some artistic creativity in a storyboard similiarly to the 8 framed storyboard shown in the 1975 television ad I posted earlier this week here

    http://www.saabhistory.com/2007/09/04/saab-television-commercial-discovery-1975/

    Reply to this comment
  8. Zach Leighton

    06. Sep, 2007

    How about some guy watching tv and sees a huge storm hit somewhere and so he drives his XWD out there and tears it up with cool oakenfold music and stuff and some effects.

    (Originally from saabcentral)

    Reply to this comment
  9. JV

    06. Sep, 2007

    Excellent handling is SAABs true advantage in this crowded AWD market. How do they demonstrate it? The only way I know of is to get into WRC or touring car championships. Then throw in some rooster tails in snow just to prove it can still handle traction events too.

    Reply to this comment
  10. Drew

    06. Sep, 2007

    How about a funny one? Show a young couple driving along briskly while the passenger is reading a map…everything seems normal. Then all of a sudden some snap corners come up, and the passenger start yelling rally-type instructions to the driver, zoom out to show the car ripping through some tight esses sideways, while the passenger continues to shout information. The road straightens out, zoom back into the cockpit, and have one of the passengers take a sip from a coffe cup.

    New Saab XWD, Rally heritage for the real world.

    Reply to this comment
  11. ryanoe9000

    06. Sep, 2007

    Okay, so the scene displaying the new Saab 9-3 XWD should clearly have snow in the backdrop, similiarly to what my first Saab looks like here http://www.saabhistory.com/about/, but not in a stationary position, it would be a driving sequence.

    The picture is being painted for Saab Automobile USA, so we’re getting there…

    Thanks everyone for the input so far, let’s keep it coming!

    Reply to this comment
  12. Jonathan

    06. Sep, 2007

    This is easy. Video footage of Carlson in a 93 or 95 in a snow rally……then fade out to the new XWD. Slogan should be something like…….”Now you too can obtain this degree of Saab control in all driving situations”

    Reply to this comment
  13. Talonderiel

    07. Sep, 2007

    Drew, that is an awesome idea!!

    Reply to this comment
  14. Ben aka Tweek's Turbos

    07. Sep, 2007

    I think Saab needs to drop the born from jets thing. BMW was born from prop planes, and later jets too, some could argure the entire Japanese car market was as well. You don’t hear VW boasting “Born from Hitler”

    I think they should aggressivly target the winter active segment of society. My original idea for an add was this:
    Post apocolyptic snow scene. Hundreds of people climbing out of overturned and burning SUVs.
    Saab 9-3x slaloms thru the horrifc scene. With a dead deer for food strapped to the hood.

    Another idea could be your typical winter in New england, all you see is white, and flashing yellow from plow trucks, and then a single bright red saab swishing thru snow packed with skis and boards. Make sure people know its a double best safety pick, in IHSI or whatever tests.

    Reply to this comment
  15. Ben aka Tweek's Turbos

    07. Sep, 2007

    I would also like to add, It needs to be real snow. NOT the CGI stuff like in the Infiniti adds.

    Reply to this comment
  16. ryanoe9000

    07. Sep, 2007

    Ben,

    Good idea, real snow is definitely more believable, but are you sure that Saab should drop the “born from jets” campaign? The worst thing Saab could do right now is change their entire campaign title yet again. Consistancy is key here with the message, so if I remember Jay Spenchian saying that this campaign will evolve and become the umbrella for other additions. That seems more sensible evolving it than another complete changeover, and certainly more cost effective.

    The economics and consistency would certainly contribute to having the “Born From Jets” campaign evolve and develop, to incorporate additional products and features that Saab is launching such as the XWD.

    Reply to this comment
  17. ryanoe9000

    07. Sep, 2007

    Ben,

    I like your ideas, keep them coming! What about the second one too where “all you see is white”, then those horizontal LEDs piercing through the whiteout and then the car coming out through the storm with the XWD, then continue with your idea of the Saab moving nicely through the snow with “and flashing yellow from plow trucks, and then the Saab continues on swishing thru snow packed with skis and boards. Make sure people know its a double best safety pick, in IHSI or whatever tests.”

    We might have a top 5 or 10 storyboards for Saab’s advertising campaign, let’s keep moving.

    Anyone here into taking some of these ideas and putting in a few graphics to symbolize them?

    Reply to this comment
  18. Ben aka Tweek's Turbos

    07. Sep, 2007

    Oh, and next time a big movie like Matrix or Tranformers gets bought out by GM, throw in some Saabs.

    Saab has a great opportunity with Dan Brown’s “Robert Langdon” whom we all know in Angels and Demons, sped off in a Saab 900s. (I assume 98 900s turbo).

    Reply to this comment
  19. ryanoe9000

    07. Sep, 2007

    Ben,

    Actually, there’s been a lot of chatter about a possible “SAAB Docu-Drama”, title is yet to be decided. It’ll be a historical film, effectively how SAAB started in the United States.

    Remember a number of the buildings are still around, people still around with history and knowledge. It would surely be a really good film.

    You heard it here first.

    Reply to this comment
  20. Vector-SS

    07. Sep, 2007

    Here’s an end of commercial sentence I thought would be catchy 🙂

    “The worlds safest car just got safer…Introducing the most advanced AWD system…in the world”

    Reply to this comment
  21. Matt

    22. Apr, 2008

    I think they need to film a Saab ripping through the mountains in VT. Vermont currently has the most Subaru drivers per capita in nation, so this would be a huge market to capture.

    Reply to this comment

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    […] Saab History Saab Cross Wheel Drive 39 XWD 39 in the North East USA Posted by root 39 minutes ago (http://www.saabhistory.com) Comment from zach leighton time september 6 2007 7 59 pm video footage of carlson in a 93 or 95 in a snow rally then fade out to the new xwd i remember jay spenchian saying that this campaign will evolve and become the umbrella for other additions 2009 sa Discuss  |  Bury |  News | Saab History Saab Cross Wheel Drive 39 XWD 39 in the North East USA […]

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