Tag Archives: Victor Muller

Saab Automobile’s New Design Director, Jason Castriota Interviewed By New York Times

Posted on 23. Jun, 2010 by .

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Photo Credit: New York Times

Saab’s new Design Director, Jason Castriota has been recently interviewed by the New York Times.

Here’s a small part of that interview below:

Jason Castriota, formerly designer for Ferrari, Pininfarina and Stile Bertone, has been tapped by Saab to lead design, through Mr. Castriota’s design firm. […]

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Saab Boss Victor Muller Speaks About Electric Cars

Posted on 15. Jun, 2010 by .

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As we know, the future of the automobile industry will require Hybrids and fully electric EV’s, and it’s the auto industry that must create the demand which will then in turn, help to justify developing the sustainable “smart grid” powered infrastructure to fully support it.

Saab Automobile’s new Chairman, Victor Muller of Spyker Cars has recently spoken to Just Auto about his slightly different take on the future of EV’s in the automobile industry.

While Saab continues to develop it’s new era of independence, it must maintain it’s continued vision and passion for sustainable transportation solutions as a historical leader in technological solutions within the automotive industry.

It’s important to indicate that partnerships with companies such as Boston-Power, are just the beginning of this process.

As Saab Automobile emphasizes it’s interest to be a leader in this space, it will need to ensure that these products become a reality for consumers just as other manufacturers are doing, so that this global smart grid infrastructure powered by sustainable energy sources, can begin to take shape.

Muller is also skeptical about full electric cars, although he said Saab will run an electric test fleet when it launches the new 9-3.

“I lose sleep over electric cars – they are a contradiction in terms. They are only as good as the grid they get their electricity from.

“In Stockholm EVs are truly zero emission because the country has nuclear and hydro-electric power stations. You can’t say the same for New York because the car might have an electric motor but 500 miles away someone is shoveling coal into the generating station.

“We have to look at where the electricity comes from. There is a long way to go before EVs can be truly classed as zero emission. I see the future for now in hybrids, smaller, high performance internal combustion engines aided by electric solutions.”

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Saab Executives Successfully Finish Mille Miglia Race

Posted on 09. May, 2010 by .

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Saab executives, Jan Åke Jonsson and Victor Muller and their co-drivers, the sons Christian respectively Olivier have successfully finished the Mille Miglia race this past week.

Reflections from Mille Miglia by Jan Åke Jonsson
On Sunday night, both Victor and I — along with our sons — crossed the finish line in our 1957 vintage Saab 93s. This marked the end of an amazing experience that none of us will ever forget.
The race took us from Brescia to Bologna, then Bologna to Rome and finally from Rome to Brescia on open roads with ordinary motorists.

Following Victor from Brescia, at unbelievable speeds, I knew I had to forget everything I had learned in driving school about existing traffic rules and common sense. Now the aim was to travel along the route as fast as possible – a mindset that was clearly shared by all participants. Thankfully, Victor was an excellent teacher and I picked things up very quickly.

The trip went very well apart from a broken generator, a few fuel leaks, worn brakes and a buckled rear bumper. I have to admit that the buckled bumper was my fault as I was driving “a bit” fast and a building was standing in the way as my car skidded sideways.

Travelling through these parts of Italy was a fantastic experience full of beautiful, quaint villages and small towns with an abundance of good food and drink on offer. Unfortunately exploring our surroundings wasn´t the purpose of this trip — our focus was on the driving — but we´ll make sure we go back and enjoy the area at a later date.

Our participation in this event also had a promotional aspect to it. When Saab has the chance to compete alongside Ferrari, Aston Martin, Maserati, Jaguar and Mercedes, it´s an ideal opportunity to expose the brand to people interested in buying premium European cars. Given the amount of recognition and positive feedback we received during the trip, we know our participation was a great success in this respect.
[…]

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Saab Automobile Provides 1st Update On Mille Miglia Race

Posted on 07. May, 2010 by .

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Photo Credit: Saab Automobile AB

Saab Automobile has just posted their first update on the Mille Miglia race since announcing it back on April 25th.

At 20h30 Thursday night this year’s Mille Miglia started in Brecia, Italy. About one hour later both Jan Åke Jonsson and Victor Muller and their co-drivers, the sons Christian respectively Olivier, were on their way on the 350 kilometer long lap to Bologna.

Apart from a problem with the generator on Victor Muller’s car, that was fixed during the night, both the Saab 93’s are running well in this classic rally. Today they are driving from Bologna to Rome and tomorrow the route is Rome-Brecia.

The fact that both the CEO and the Chairman of the Board are attending this rally,gets some attention and they have already been interviewed by i.e Auto Motor & Sport.

Mille Miglia is a big crowd-puller. Famous cars and famous people add the rally zest to the competition and along the roads a lot of people are gathering in big crowds to enjoy classic cars, the atmosphere, the excitement as well as the food and drinks they bring with them.

It is a popular festival that has spectators from all over the world. No one wants to miss Mille Miglia. The big interest for this event is obvious when looking at the numbers of cars applying for taking part in the rally: 1400! Only 375 cars and drivers were selected and among them the two Saab 93’s driven by Muller and Jonsson.

Follow the race at http://www.millemiglia.it/

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Track Saab & Spyker's CEO Progress In Mille Miglia Race

Posted on 06. May, 2010 by .

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As the fist half of the Mille Miglia race has already started this morning, Victor Muller & Jan Ake Jonsson have been making good progress so far as you can see above in the live map.

To follow the rest of the progress, I encourage you to visit the Mille Miglia’s live map then, simply plug in their vehicle numbers, #328 for Victor Muller of Spyker & #329 for Jan Ake Jonsson of Saab Automobile.

It’s interesting to see their progress on a map, but will be even more interesting to see some photos & videos as well that will be forthcoming.

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Saab & Spyker CEO's Begin First Day Of Mille Miglia Race

Posted on 06. May, 2010 by .

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Photo Credit: Saab Automobile AB

Today marks the beginning of the Mille Miglia race in Italy that both the CEO of Spyker Cars, Victor Muller as well as CEO of Saab Automobile, Jan Ake Jonsson, will be participating in as previously mentioned.

The two of them will be competing in two 1957 SAAB 93 models, along with their son’s as co-pilots, Oliver Muller and Christian Alexander, respectively.

The Mille Miglia clockwise route begins in Brescia then to Rome and returns to Brescia, passing through over seven regions including some of the most scenic cities in Italy such as Bologna, Florence & Rome.

Below is the schedule from the 6th – 8th of May as well as the Route Map. For more details, please visit the Mille Miglia website directly.

THURSDAY 6th MAY
7.30 am – 1.00 pm Cars brought to the Fiera di Brescia.
Welcome coffee, administrative and technical checks, assignation of event numbers and road books.
Parking of trailers and transportation trucks inside the Fiera.
8.30 am – 3.30 pm Cars entered head for Piazza della Loggia for the sealing.
8.30 am – 12.00 noon Cars presented to the public in Piazza della Loggia.
8.30 am – 3.30 pm Cars exhibited in piazzas and specially designated areas of the city centre.
10.00 am Blessing of a representative of the cars in Piazza Paolo VI.
5.30 am – 8.30 pm Buffet dinner at the Mille Miglia Museum in Brescia.
7.30 pm Start of the first car from Viale Venezia for the Brescia – Bologna leg and presentation of the cars to the public.
00.30 am Arrival of the first car in Piazza Maggiore and Piazza Galvani in Bologna . Presentation to the public.
Cars parked in the Fiera.
Shuttle service to the various hotels. Welcome snack in hotel rooms with appetizer and fruit. Overnight stay.
[…]

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Muller & Jonsson's 1957 SAAB 93 Prepares For Mille Miglia

Posted on 03. May, 2010 by .

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Photo Credits: Sander V

Trollhattan, Sweden’s TTELA reports that Jan Åke Jonsson, and Victor Muller’s SAAB 93’s are preparing for the Mille Miglia rally which starts this Thursday.

Here’s a snippet of the report below:

Jan Åke Jonsson, and Victor Muller are set in the classic Mille Miglia Rally, starting on Thursday.

The duo will tune similar Saab 93 models from 1957, since the historic rally was resurrected in the early 1980s, only cars manufactured prior to 1957 will be able to compete.

– It is a difficult race where it comes to being in the right place at the right time. More strategy than the gas in the ground, “said Peter Bäckström, head of the Saab museum who is the service person during the rally.

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Saab History Celebrates Earth Day's 40th Anniversary

Posted on 22. Apr, 2010 by .

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Today marks Earth Day’s 40th Anniversary which began back on April 22nd, 1970 during the first phase of the environmental movement. That day began as a nationwide campaign focused on encouraging awareness of the change in the environment we all live in. Over 2,000 academic institutions, colleges and universities and over 10,000 elementary and secondary schools participated on that day.

The milestones that began shortly after that day due to public pressure to advance environmental action included:

That first phase of the environmental movement saw the creation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 1970, the Clean Air Act amendments in 1970 to enforce national air quality standards, t he Clean Water Act of 1972 as well as the Endangered Species Act of 1973 and many more.

The Mid nineties saw a second phase in the environmental movement where we actually saw a more conscientious approach to recycling for consumers and the beginning of electric vehicles in the automotive industry.

Today, as we are well into the third environmental movement to protect the planet and ourselves, we are seeing a lot more aggressive movements all around the world, but of course the work is no where near over.

When it comes to Saab Automobile, they have a tall task at hand where all of their products within 15 years, need to be driving entirely off of sustainable energy sources that are not fossil fuels as mandated by the Swedish Government.

Let’s remember, Saab has been focusing on the environment during the first environmental movement in the seventies with their fully sustainable wind turbines and steam powered concept cars to electric Saab powered postal delivery vehicles.

As we know, the Swedish Government are very progressive when it comes to their focus on the environment and as a leader, it’s important for us to know that Saab is part of that movement with them.

If we can picture the future of the new Saab, one will realize that they no longer need to dream of fully electric vehicles like the ones that Boston-Power are cooperating with Saab on, as the early prototypes are slated to be ready by the end of this year. Today, we also see Saab Automobile’s facility in Trollhattan, Sweden fueled entirely by wood chips and that’s just the beginning to this new era of independence for the company when it comes to their sustainability priorities. We also should be able to see the increased flexibility that Saab will have with future partners that are serious about the environment unlike their previous parent. Even Saab’s large community of owners and enthusiasts are taking it upon themselves to re-engineer their older Saabs to become fully electric.

According to a recent dialogue with CEO Victor Muller of Spyker Cars, Saab’s new owner, there is a bright future ahead for Saab’s focus on the environment thanks to their vision and the recent EIB loan that was granted that ensures the funding to develop future sustainable products.

I leave you with a time line of Saab’s focus on the environment with real action, not concept cars, but actual progress.

The movement for a more “Sustainable Saab” is well underway.

1976 – As one of the first manufacturers to battle all three exhaust pollutants – unburned hydrocarbons, Carbon Monoxide, and Oxides of Nitrogen, Saab delivers vehicles with catalysts and the oxygen sensor-equipped Fuel-Injection Systems to the United States.

1983 – Asbestos-free brake pads and clutch surfaces for all Saab models are introduced.

1984 – Greater quantities of stainless steel are added to Saab exhaust systems. The greater durability offers less environmental stress.

1985 – Saab Maintenance intervals begin to be extended, resulting in less use of raw materials and demand on the environment.

1989 – Decrease of hazardous production materials by 50% – initiated without legal regulation.

1991 – Saab is the first manufacturer to actually unveil an environmentally-friendly air conditioning system at the Geneva Motor Show.

1991 – Saab Trionic system

1992 – Saab reduces maintenance services on all 9000 and 900 models in the interest of lessening hazardous waste products such as used oil and filters.

1995 – Saab introduces ecopower engines which is a system that ensures that the engine is running as cleanly and economically as possible, at all times.

2001 – Energy consumption cut by 25 percent over ten years. Saab now produces five Environmental Class 1 variants instead of only one.

2002 – No combustible materials will be dumped – everything will be sorted and recycled.

2003 – New contracts will be concluded only with suppliers who conform to the same environmental demands as Saab Automobile

2006 – Saab’s “designed for recycling” focus takes shape.

2007 – Saab urging progress in Bioethanol infrastructure

2007 – Saab leads alternative fuel vehicle segment

2010 – Reduced CO2 Emissions for 9-3 Convertible.

2010 – Saab Partnering with Boston-Power on fully electric vehicles

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