Aug. 27-- Doesn't it seem like Jaguar and Saab are always in the middle of a turnaround?
Ever since Ford bought Jaguar in 1989 and General Motors countered by acquiring control of Saab the following year, those European brands have struggled to be profitable despite heavy investments. They each need to sell a lot more cars.
For Saab, the key seems to be hitting 200,000 units a year worldwide, which would be a 50 percent increase over last years results. Saab officials say they can hit that target within three years.
Saab and Jaguar, like most other major European brands, have seen their sales in the United States dip this year.
In the past decade, Jaguar has had some successes. But now, Ford executives are cutting production at all three of Jaguar's factories as part of the current turnaround plan, which is being devised on the fly.
Meanwhile, in Trollhattan, Sweden, Saab execs have been seeing light at the end of the tunnel for years. They plan to achieve profitability by the end of this year, but several hundred more employees will need to be axed. And despite annual productivity gains, the Trollhattan factory is still considered vulnerable to being shuttered by GM.