Tag Archives: Saab Designer

Former Saab Designer Anthony Lo, Leaves GM For Renault

Posted on 09. Mar, 2010 by .



Photo Credit: Saab History

Former Saab Designer, Anthony Lo, who I interviewed this past September in Frankfurt and previously in Detroit a year earlier, has left GM to take a new position with Renault according to Car Design News

Lo, led what people refer to as the “concept car era” for Saab under GM’s ownership, beginning with the 9-X in 2001, 9-3x, 9-3 Sport Hatch, Aero-X, 9-4x BioPower, 9-X BioHybrid and ending with the 9-X Air in 2008.

He brought a lot of design skills to the table with Saab and it was a pleasure to have him on board.

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Saab Car Show in Frankfurt, Germany – Photos

Posted on 16. Sep, 2008 by .


Photo Credits: Saab Automobile Germany

The folks from Saab Automobile Germany and the local dealership in Frankfurt that hosted the classic Saab car show this past weekend, have provided Saab History photos of the event.

As you can see with the photos, there were a number of vehicles present, by local Saab Enthusiasts in Germany as well as Switzerland. On hand, was Peter Backstrom, curator of the Saab Car Museum in Sweden as well as Andrew Dyson, Saab designer at GM Europe.

During the event there was live music provided by Swedish singer Pia Fridhill, and even a live demonstration of a Saab 99 restoration by a master technician at the Saab Zentrum Frankfurt.

Evidently, there was even a parts market, books on hand in addition to model cars and tv clips showing vintage Saabs in action.

Overall, it looks like it was a great time had by all that were in attendance.

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Saab Designer Profile – Björn Karlström

Posted on 28. Jun, 2008 by .


Björn Karlström, was the Saab designer responsible for some of the original design of the SAAB 97 Sonett II model that was built between 1966 and 1969. He began his design work much like Saab’s first designer, Sixten Sason where he illustrated aircraft.

Below is a great writeup about his background as a designer from Hobby.se, enjoy:

bjorn-karlstrom.jpgBj̦rn Karlstr̦m was a well known artist who drew scale illustrations of aircraft for nearly 60 years Рsince the late thirties! His work was published in many parts of the world including magazines such as Air Trails, Model Ariplane News, Flying, Aviation Age, American Aircraft Modeler and RC-modeler. He was a consulant for many newspapers, for example the New York Herald Tribune where he was an expert on Russian aircraft of the fifties. He had a remarkable aptitude for accurate drawings even from very scarce information Рthese drawings were almost perfect when compared with better information available later.

Björn left school in the thirties to practice as an aviation mechanic. There he took care of aircraft like Waco, Stinson, Cierva C30 and Cub. In his spare time he made models and drew comic strips. At seventeen years old, in 1938, he was discovered by the editor of the magazine Flygning. During the following years he made many drawings for scale modelers and also drew front covers for the magazine. In 1941 he got the chance to do his first comic strip.

In his long career as an artist Björn was responsible for about a dozen different comic strips, one is still published daily in Svenska Dagbladet, the second largest newspaper in Stockholm. He also illustrated a number of Biggles albums and designed covers for books in many countries.

As a constructor and designer Bj̦rn worked on industrial projects, for example trains, boats, lorries, small motor bikes and even a fancy sports car Рthe SAAB Sonett II. He has also designed small things like refrigerators and outboard engines.

Many people appreciated the work that Björn did during almost half a century. International FAI gave Björn the “Diplome Paul Tissander”. Swedish organizations also awarded Björn medals for his work.

In a series of books we offer Björn’s accumulated works. We start with primary and secondary trainers* of the Royal Swedish Air Force and continue with Swedish fighters in the next book. Later in the series are books with the rest of the Swedish military aircraft, civil aircraft and other interesting collections of Björn’s drawings.

Source: Hobby.SE

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Saab Designer Anthony Lo On the Saab 9-X BioHybrid

Posted on 27. Mar, 2008 by .


Photo Credit: Saab Automobile

I recently participated in another installment of the GM Next chat with Saab Designer, Anthony Lo. Anthony Lo joined Saab Automobile AB in October, 2000, as chief designer for Advanced Design. Lo has lead the design of the Saab 9-X, 9-3X, 9-3 Sport Hatch, and Aero-X, 9-4x, 9-X BioHybrid concept cars.

I was very interested to hear many of his responses to the questions posed: Please keep in mind that the order in which the questions posted did not necessarily sync up with all answers, so please use your own intuition.

Here is the full chat transcript below:

NoSpeaker: Anthony Lo, Director of Advanced Design, General Motors Europe
Region: North America
Date: 25 – March – 2008
Time: 10:30 –11:30 a.m. (EST)

SME: Anthony Lo, Director of Advanced Design, General Motors Europe
Date: 2008-March-25
Time: 10:30 –11:30 a.m. (EST)

Hello everyone, I’m Dave Roman, Director of GM Europe Technology & Design Communications, and I will be your moderator for this webchat session. Anthony has arrived and he is logging into the chat right now. We’ll get started in a moment.

What are your thoughts on the Saab 9-X BioHybrid?

Good morning! The 9-X BioHybrid is our vision on what a compact size Saab would look líke.

On model nomenclature: Why was the Saab 9-X reusing the 9-X again, instead of 9-1x?

As it remains as a concept, we would like to reuse the 9-X nomenclature.

On Technology: What will be making production (ie. Solar Panels, etc.) and do the solar panels on this car actually work this time or is it just theoretical?

The hybrid system is announced for production on future GM vehicles. On the solar panel, we are working on several studies on how to improve battery performance and solar is one of them. The panel itself does not work on the concept.

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Saab Designer Bryan Nesbitt On the Saab 9-X BioHybrid

Posted on 27. Mar, 2008 by .


Film Credit: Saab History

Saab Designer, Bryan Nesbitt offered his time to speak to a number of members of the press at the New York International Auto Show during a group discussion.

I think that you will find his frank and to the point insight and information about the Saab 9-X BioHybrid as well as the driving styles in the United States versus Europe very interesting indeed.

A special thanks again goes to Saab Automobile USA, General Motors & Saab of Hunterdon / JMK Saab for making this interview possible.


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Saab Designer Profile – Michael Mauer

Posted on 08. Mar, 2008 by .



Photo Credit: Saab Automobile AB

Michael Mauer was born on July 28th, 1962 in the German town of Rotenburg/Fulda, but grew up in Höchenschwand, in the Black Forest. He studied automobile design from 1982 to 1986 at the Polytechnic in Pforzheim, and from there secured his first job in the Design area of Mercedes-Benz AG in Sindelfingen. In 1989 he was appointed Design Project Leader, and two years later oversaw design work for the first SLK model generation. In July 1995, the company appointed him Head of Department and entrusted him with design responsibility for the A-Class, SLK and SL models.

In 1998 Michael Mauer moved to the Mercedes-Benz Advanced Design Studio in Tokyo, Japan, as General Manager, and was intensively involved in advanced development work on various model lines. A year later, he was put in charge of Design at MCC Smart GmbH. This was where he met up with Anthony Lo, who together for a number of years in the Saab design center.

In June 2000 Michael Mauer took a position with Saab Automobile as Executive Director Design and worked at the Saab Design Center in Pixbo / Mölnlycke, Sweden. Since March of 2003,
Saab Automobile’s Board of Management appointed Michael Mauer as Chief Designer of Saab and Advanced Concept Center General Motors Europe.

In July of 2004, Michael Mauer left Saab Automobile and took a position with Porsche.

Since working with Saab, he was responsible for the design of the Saab 9-X, 9-3X, 9-3 Sport Hatch, concept cars and the wheels for the Saab 9-3 Sport Sedan, the production version of the Saab 9-3 SportCombi and MY2004-2007 Saab 9-3 Convertible design, and the 9-2X.

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Saab Designer Profile – Giorgetto Giugiaro

Posted on 24. Feb, 2008 by .


giugaro.jpgGiorgetto Giugiaro born in Cuneo Italy on August 7th, 1938. Giugiaro began working with Saab-Scania on the Saab 9000 body design in 1978. The conceptual designs that Guigiaro designed, continued until 1981. The Saab 9000 was finally shown to the public in may of 1984, however the engine for the 9000 was shown a year earlier in Geneva in March of 1983.

The Saab 9000 design followed the first project that Giugaro also designed as part of this venture which was known as the Saab Lancia 600 project, that was sold only in Sweden.

Today, Giugaro works as a product designer and head of Giugiaro Design in Italy. I highly suggest you visit his website.

Here is a quote from the former Saab 9000 designer himself:

“Right from the moment I started my career as a car designer, I was convinced that an enormous opportunity would have slipped away had I not transferred, within the sphere of product design, the complex, albeit effective, automotive design methodology to other mass production sectors.”

– Giorgetto Giugiaro

Source: http://www.giugiarodesign.it

Below is a nice writeup from

Giorgetto Giugiaro, born in Cuneo, Italy in 1938 is one of the great automobile and industrial designers of the 20th century. He is credited with designing more cars than anyone else, and these include some of the best-selling and most beautiful automobiles ever produced.

Giugiaro grew up with art and design: His grandfather Luigi painted church frescoes. His father, Mario, made decorative religious art and oil paintings while he was growing up near Cuneo in northwest Italy. In Turin, Giugiaro studied art by day and technical design by night. In June 1955, some of his many car sketches were mounted in an end-of-the-year school exhibition. Dante Giacosa, Fiat’s technical director, saw the talent behind his work and hired him three months later. He had just turned 17.

Although producing some very interesting early work, Giugiaro found it difficult to grow at Italy’s largest auto manufacturer and towards the end of 1959 he joined Bertone. There he penned some of his most important works: the Alfa Romeo Giulia GT, the Fiat 850 Spider, as well as the Testudo and Canguro prototypes.

At the end of 1965, when Ghia had been written off as being on the road to folding, Giugiaro became head of Ghia’s design office in a surprise move that shocked the design world. His first works were studies for Volkswagen and Isuzu, and the four cars presented at the 1966 Motor Show: Maserati Ghibli, De Tomaso Pampero, De Tomaso Mangusta and Fiat Vanessa. The Maserati Ghibli and the De Tomaso Pampero were regarded instantly as masterpieces, and launched Ghia once again in to the spotlight. His work for Isuzu was very important at this time and the Japanese manufacturer built a large number of Ghia designs.

Hungry to establish his own company, ItalDesign made its debut at the 1968 Turin Motor Show with the Manta prototype. At Italdesign Giugiaro styled over 80 production cars and numerous prototypes and concepts. Various Giugiaro-designed automobiles, including the 1974 Golf, 1980 Fiat Uno and the 1993 Fiat Punto were the most-sold automobiles of their respective production years.

It is interesting to note that Giugiaro began the “folded paper” era of the 1970s, where cars took on sharp edges, like his Lotus Esprit, Volkswagen Golf, Hyundai Pony and the Lancia Delta. He also introduced the trend toward “tall-body” design with Fiat Panda and Uno which have a great influence on modern car design since the early 1980s.

Beginning in the 1970s, ItalDesign extended it’s scope to product design including cameras for Nikon, sewing machines for Necchi, and watches for Seiko. His daughter Laura is managing director of the family-controlled Italdesign-Giugiaro SpA, and his son Fabrizio has taken over the styling and prototype studio. Recent work includes the Lexus GS300 and the Daewoo lineup.

Back to list of Honored Designers

Source: http://www.brophy.com/eodweb/htmls/designers/giugiaro.htm

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Saab Designer Profile – Einar Hareide

Posted on 05. Feb, 2008 by .


einar_new2_300.jpgNorwegian born, Einar Johan Hareide, began with Saab as a designer in 1985 and worked until 1989 before he decided take a job with Mercedes Benz briefly, then returned to Saab in 1991 as a designer until 1994. In 1994, he was appointed design director otherwise known as chief designer until 1999. It is important to note that Hareide worked alongside Björn Envall on the new generation 900 designs (Envall-Hareide era).

Einar Hareide was also responsible for the early introduction of the 9-5 until the first modification was made in 2002, the 9-3 which was the successor to the new generation 900, as well as the 9-3 Sport Sedan designs from 2003 until 2006, and exterior design until 2007.

Today, Einar Hareide has been running his own design business focusing on a variety of industries with offices in Moss, Norway and Gothenburg, Sweden called Hareide Designmill.

Photo Credit: Hareide Designmill

Work Experience:

1994 – 1999 Chief Designer, Saab Automobile
1991 – 1994 Designer, Saab Automobile
1985 – 1989 Designer, Saab Automobile


1985 – 1986 Transport Design, Center for Creative Studies, Detroit, Michigan
1981 – 1985 Master of Design, HDK Gothenburg

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