Geely to buy SAAB?

There were rumors yesterday that Geely was interested in buying SAAB. But they were initially dismissed. Now things look a little different according to one website.

Could this be true?

“And Geely is probably the reason the Government now is ready to act. Trollhättan newspaper TTELA today confirms from its sources that Geely is in fact interested in buying Saab. And they want the whole company, which would mean that the brand Saab would live on. Volvo is in need of more engineers and the Swedish automotive supplier industry is in need of both Saab and Volvo. In addition, Saab has top competence in several areas, and Geely believes that the collected competence will strengthen both companies. The Swedish Government knows Geely and has seen that with the support from Geely, Volvo has flourished. And should thus be positive.”

www.lifewithsaab.com

The Coolest Camper (well … maybe)

I’ve always thought the Toppola Saab 900 camper was the greatest camping invention, but after looking at this creation, I think this one would work much better. Somebody made a camper out of a 1962 Corvair van! How cool is that? It’s not overly large but does come with enough room for a small group to travel well. And (for you Corvair affecianados), it would appear that the camper has the four carb Corsa engine. So, this could be quite an interesting project. It’s currently listed on eBay with a parts van included in the final haul.

Very cool … but don’t worry. I’m not going to buy it.

Lucky Duck

When I was a child, one of the local elementary schools had an annual fun fair called, “Lucky Ducky” (at least that’s what I remember it being called). They had carnival booths around the playground with games such as fishing for prizes. That’s the game where you put your play fishing pole’s line over a wall and get a mystery prize. Honestly, I don’t remember much about the prizes or whether or not it cost anything, but from that point on, any time somebody got something special, the neighbor kids would call them a “lucky duck.”

That phrase came to mind again when I watched the following video of Tasmanian blogger Steven Wade riding in the original SAAB Sonett.  During his recent trip to Trollhatten, Sweden, Swade got to tour the SAAB museum and to experience lots of the car brand’s heritage.  This must have been the highlight:

An honest salesman?

I was just finishing up another school year driving bus for the local HeadStart program.  It had been a good year.  My co-workers were friendly and the job was enjoyable.  But having to find a decent part-time job every summer was getting old.  What could I do year round that I would enjoy and that would provide for my family?  Some time later, I saw an advertisement in the help wanted section of the newspaper for car sales.  Was that something I could do?

The automobile has always had a special place in my heart.  From domestic to foreign, from Chevy to Jaguar—I’d owned and enjoyed many cars.  But could I make it as a car salesman?  You know the typical stereotype of  a used car salesman.  He’s someone who dresses flashy, talks a lot, and doesn’t let the truth get in the way of a sale.  That’s not how most people would describe me.  I’m more of the quiet, honest, and conservative type.  And to make things even more interesting, I am a committed Christian and have served in several church ministry positions.  Why would I want to join the ranks of “slimy” salesmen?

Let’s just think about this for a moment.  Does a car salesman have to lie about a car to make the sale?  I don’t think so.  I’ve learned that people tend to trust you more often when you are honest and straight forward with them.  Does a car salesman have to use high pressure tactics to make the sale?  Not necessarily.  My method has been to point out the excellent selling points in each car, sit down and discover the customer’s needs, logically show the value of the car and then ask for a decision after the test drive.  If the customer is ready to make a decision, he will.  If not, he may need more information, but I’m willing to wait for him to make his own decision.  Some people just need time to think things over.

My job is to help each customer to find the perfect car for their situation.  And if possible, I will do that.  But, even if I am unable to sell every customer a car, I want to break the stereotype.  I think it is possible to enjoy the car shopping experience.  But if you’re still wondering, stop by and I’ll do my best to show you the difference.

Andy’s Coolest Cars

For it’s 60th anniversary, Motor Trend recently came out with its 60 coolest cars of the last 60 years.  Not surprisingly, two of them were Jaguars (the Mark II and the E-type).  But I must admit that a few cars were missing that would have made my own list.  But then again, who am I?

Well, let me answer that questions.  I’m a car salesman who has owned and driven a number of interesting cars over the years.  And I’m a blogger who happens to have time to write an article about his own coolest cars.  So, let Motor Trend have their own ideas … and I’ll express my own.

1. 1982 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE

This is my favorite car of all that I’ve owned or might have a chance to ever own.  It’s one of those designs that some people love and others can’t stand to see.  But to me, it’s the ultimate car in my budget range.  The beautiful sloping hood and raised headlights along with the V-12 engine make this a car that won’t easily be forgotten.

jag-family

2. 1988 SAAB 900 Turbo 5 speed

After owning two other Classic 900s, I found this one on eBay in the Washington DC area.  The price was right and the performance exhilarating.  What a difference the upgraded suspension and turbo charger made over the model S.  And having found an SPG box in the junk yard also bumped up the horse power and throttle response.  It was quite the car because of it’s classic Swedish styling, powerful kick, comfortable leather seats, and nicely upholstered plaid door inserts.

88saab900t

3. 2008 Volvo C30 2.0 6 speed

Yes, the Volvo S60R should probably be in this spot, but there’s something about the styling of the C30 that bumped the R down a notch.  With a 227 hp turbo charged 5 cylinder mated to a 6 speed manual gearbox, this was one fun car to drive.  I may never own one, but I’ll take every chance to drive one!

08c30206spd

4. 1980 Chevy Monza

I was a poor college student working for the Tradin’ Times in Columbus, Ohio, when a college chum gave this car to me. At the time, it was the coolest car I had ever owned. It had cloth bucket seats, a leaky automatic 3 speed, and the iron duke 2.5 liter four cylinder. It’s nothing compared to the cars above, but at the time, it was “pretty cool.”

80chevymonza

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