Inside Saab Archive at SaabWorld

For those who don’t know, I worked for Saab Automobile for a short time back in 2011, running a website for them called Inside Saab. As the name suggests, it was designed to bring all the latest news, events and other developments from inside the company.

I started with Saab in April 2011 and finished when the company declared bankruptcy later in December 2011. When the company died, the website died with it.

I have an Inside Saab archive here on this website but it’s text only. I don’t have the images that went with it and the layout is exactly the same as what you’re looking at right now.

Thankfully, a friend you might know as Wulf saved a complete archive of Inside Saab that includes all the text, the images and the CSS to get the layout right. Wulf runs a Saab website called Saabworld and he’s just loaded the full Inside Saab archive on to Saabworld’s pages.

You can see it here: Inside Saab at Saabworld.

InsideSaab

Make sure you check out the video page, too. The first two of what would have been a series of ten Inside Saab films are still on the site. All ten films had been shot and edited (I think) before I even started at Saab. We showed the first two but decided to hold off on showing any more because the factory had stopped production. We didn’t want it to look like we were treating that situation lightly, and we wanted to save what was really excellent material for a time when there was a better vibe about the place.

The video page also features a few other films we’d put together, too. It’s one of the things I really enjoyed about the job and it’s a shame we didn’t get to do more of it. I have a subscription feed for Porsche’s Youtube channel and those films have great cars, of course, but the films lack any real warmth or personality. The films I planned to make for Inside Saab were completely amateur in style, but featured real people telling real stories and doing real things to make great cars. One of the great things about Saab was its accessibility. I really wanted films that came across as one friend talking to another.

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Sadly, much of Inside Saab is taken up with Saab’s slow death spiral over the latter part of 2011.

There were some really fun highlights, too, though.

IntSaab 2011 in Finland was an amazing experience. If you live in Europe and haven’t been to an IntSaab event yet, put it in your plans. IntSaab was simply wonderful.

I started my tenure at Saab with a trip that would have been typical of the future if Saab had survived – coverage of the New York Motor Show. And if you cast your mind back to 2011, that means the US debut of PhoeniX.

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If you want to pick a subject to look at on Inside Saab, there is a tag cloud in the column on the right side of the home page. Just scroll down a little to see it.

Don’t use the search function just under the banner at the top of the page as it’s not currently working (it tries to search insidesaab.com which doesn’t exist anymore).

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My thanks to Wulf for having the foresight to do a complete download of the website. And my thanks to Wulf again for re-creating it at Saabworld. It’s nice to see the old site back up again (even if I’ve lost around 20kgs since that photo was taken!)

That link again: Inside Saab at Saabworld.

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11 Comments

  1. I hope at some point you condense all of this and write a book about those tumultuous times. Not necessarily the hard financial factual end, ( that’s probably been done) but the personal vignettes, the characters, the human side of trying to save Saab.

    It was a sad end, of course, but I bet you would not have wanted to miss that ride ‘for all the tea in china ‘.

    1. Many, many thanks, sir. I will enjoy these a second time through much more than the first. During the original’s run I was travelling so much that I rarely had time to relax and enjoy anything. Thanks for giving me a second chance.

  2. Mostly I try to avoid thinking about the darkest days at Saab. But given what December looked like in 2009 and then again in 2011, I fear that late December will always put a knot in my gut. So today, just for a few minutes, I indulged and visited the archive and remembered not so much the implosion but the more hopeful days. Thanks Frank and Swade.

  3. Well done Sir on saving this archive! Makes for some great (and sad) reading but well worth saving. It’s a pity saving Saab was not as easy.
    Looking back at some of the articles, I can’t help feeling that if only Saab could have got more 9-4X’s and the 9-5SW out there to the buying public that Saab would not only be alive today but actually thriving. What a great pity. So near and yet so far.

    Cuore Sportivo! & Happy Christmas!