A government-supported Turkish group has purchased the intellectual property rights for the second-generation Saab 9-3 in hopes of making a 'national car' and developing an extended-range electric car.
After being sold by GM in 2010, Saab moved under the parent of Dutch car maker Spyker Cars, which petitioned for bankruptcy in 2011. In 2012, a new company called National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS) bought Saab's bankrupt estate.
Now, TUBITAK, the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey, purchased all intellectual property rights and royalties for the Saab 9-3 and will continue to work with NEVS.
Fikri Isik, Turkey's interim science, industry and technology minister, said it would take five years and $1 billion to produce a prototype so buying the 9-3 rights made sense, according to Daily Sabah. The government says the car will be designed and developed in Turkey. At least 85 per cent of the parts for the car will be produced in the country and by 2020, it wants a car the country is proud of.
"From design to production, Turkey will be the centre for all parts and processes regarding the first domestically produced car," Isik told Daily Sabah.
Power for the car will come from gas and diesel engines, but the goal is an all-electric version of the sedan. Turkey plans to sell the still-unnamed car in Eastern Europe and the Middle East. It will likely not hit the shores of North America.
Isik tweeted about the car last week saying "domestic auto makers have developed our prototype."
TÜBİTAK öncülüğünde geliştirdiğimiz Yerli Otomobilimizin prototip fotoğrafını(Kamuflajlı) Milletimizle paylaşıyorum. pic.twitter.com/tOanG6i7fi— Fikri Işık (@fikriisik) October 13, 2015
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