LeftLaneNews

Confirmed: Beijing Auto to build last-generation Saab 9-5 in China

Last month, we reported that Beijing Automotive Industry Holding Corporation was planning to buy the tooling and rights to assemble Saab's now-discontinued previous-generation 9-5 in China, and now the Chinese automaker has confirmed that it will begin production in about six months.

BAIC got the old 9-5 tooling in exchange for taking a small share in Koenigsegg, the Swedish supercar manufacturer that is planning to acquire Saab from General Motors. The Chinese company will produce the outgoing 9-5 after Saab launches its fully-redesigned, all-new model in April. It is unclear what Changes BAIC would make to the outgoing 9-5 to differentiate it from its Swedish-built predecessors.

The move is hardly uncommon; several Chinese automakers continue to produce models that were discontinued by North American and European automakers.

Saab says that it wants for BAIC to assemble its current production models in China soon in a joint venture as required by the Chinese government. The move would expand Saab's global sales and would follow in the footsteps of Fiat, Mercedes-Benz and other manufacturers.