Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

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Thread: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

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    GMI Europe Correspondent Bravada's Avatar
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    Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    Saab builds the last GM2902 9-5 SportCombi


    Photo credit - Teknikens Värld

    As the suspense-filled Saab "wind-down"/spin-off saga reached its climax, the Trollhattan factory was busy with their daily schedules, completing the last orders gathered under the GM stewardship. Among them, the last production run of the outgoing Saab 9-5 SportCombi. The very last model of the long-running series rolled off the assembly line at 12:30 on Monday, February 1, 2010.

    This event marks the end of the long road the first-generation 9-5 has covered. Originally a fresh vehicle reenergizing Saab sales in the executive class and topping the, for the time being, successful Saab product offensive under GM, it had to soldier on for over 12 years, with just a moderate facelift afforded to it in 2005. The facelift gave the Saab 9-5 the distinctive "bespectacled" face as a means of transition between the toned-down previous and more aggressive future Saab styling, and also the affectionate nickname "Dame Edna", inspired by the Barry Humphries' comedic character with similar penchant for eyewear.

    The assembly line workers gathered around the special vehicle, which was optioned-out in everything it could have, including the top-of-the-line 2.3t BioPower engine, also a dying breed as the Saab H series of powerplants are also being retired. The "Snow Silver" car will go directly into the Saab Museum in Trollhattan, joining the very first 9-5, a red sedan.

    This is an important moment in both Saab's and GM's history. Not only does it mark an end of an era for Saab, it also marks the end of the GM2900/2902 platform, the predecessor of the modern Epsilon. Originally launched in 1988 in the Opel Vectra A, the GM2900 went on to underpin the Opel Calibra coupe, the second-gen Saab 900 (which was also the first-gen Saab 9-3 by means of a mild facelift), then updated for the Vectra B in 1994, and later stretched by Saab to underpin the 9-5. This stretched version, called GM2902, finally made it to North America in 2000 as the basis for the Opel-engineered Saturn L-Series.

    In many ways, the GM2900 was the first attempt at what became the Epsilon programme - bringing together the best GM had in the intermediate class. Epsilon, of course, started out in a much cohesive way and with that clear goal in mind, and now its second generation clearly shows GM has finally arrived at having a global platform flexible and capable enough to provide it with a range of midsize-to-large cars of very different characteristics and target markets.

    This is not quite the very end of GM2902 though - Dame Edna is now packing her bags and relocating to China, as the old Saab 9-5 technology and tooling were entirely bought out by Beijing Automotive Corporation (BAIC). With the help of Saab engineers, BAIC intend to create a whole range of new vehicles based upon it - the outcome and their market performance will show how much life there still is in this GM creation.

    ****

    Written by Bravada based on a story from Teknikens Värld (in Swedish) -> go there for more photos!

    As usual, SaabsUnited had the story first

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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    What is a "Dame Edna?" Is that some sort of Saab thing?

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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    We seem to by all-Toyota, all-the time here for the past few days, so let me piggy-back here some additional Saab information:

    Looks like a 9-5X model and 9-3 Hatchback model are in the works!

    I am very surprised that the 9-4x is still a year away. Almost 50 more units were produced last week. That makes more than 200 available for testing and production qualification.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    ACQUISITION RATIONALE AND SAAB BUSINESS PLAN

    Spyker believes that through the purchase of Saab it has a rare opportunity to acquire and rebuild a global car brand which will be repositioned towards an independent performance-oriented niche car company with an industry-leading environmental strategy. Saab‟s brand DNA is unique and rooted in its aeronautical heritage, innovative and independent thinking and its Swedish origins. Spyker fully supports Saab‟s Business Plan which will be implemented by Saab management. The Business Plan, drawn up by Saab management over the past ten months, was analysed by Spyker in assistance with Booz & Co and KPMG Transaction Services, advisors to Spyker. The Business Plan has also been analysed and supported by several advisors to the Swedish Government and the EIB.

    At the General Meeting, Spyker Cars N.V. intends to adopt a resolution to change its name to Saab Spyker Automobiles NV ("Saab Spyker"). This entity will operate Spyker and Saab as two separate operating companies, each focused on its distinct target markets with their respective vehicle lines. As previously stated, Saab Spyker is committed to execute the Saab Business Plan. It is the intention to enhance it in several areas. The highlights of Saab's strategy will be:

    * Saab will be a stand-alone niche manufacturer with three to four model lines: 9-3 (sedan, hatchback, sports estate, X and convertible) and 9-5 (sedan, sports estate and X) and the 9-4X for both the US and European markets. In addition, Saab will investigate the potential of adding a fourth smaller car line ("9-1") in due course provided that the positive development of the smaller car segment continues. However, this model is currently not envisaged in the Business Plan so if the outcome of the investigation is positive, additional financing to develop this model could be required.

    * Saab's product portfolio will be renewed completely, beginning with the launch of the new 9-5 early this summer, the new 9-4X in early 2011 and the new "all Saab" 9-3 in 2012.

    * Saab will continue to be repositioned against other brands such as Audi (A4/A6) and BMW (3/5 series) as a premium brand, leveraging its strong and unique brand heritage.

    * Saab's Technical Development Center in Trollhättan has full capability in developing complete vehicles and will continue to do so. In areas such as safety, environment, driving characteristics, practicality, turbo technologies and several other innovations, the Saab brand is among the best in the industry.

    * With Trollhättan as one of the most efficient mid-size car plants in Europe, production and sales volumes are aimed to be rebuilt to recent pre-crisis levels of about 100,000 to 125,000 vehicles including the 9-4X built in Mexico.

    * The current dealer network will be re-energized with a new sales and distribution approach in certain markets, which will be implemented during 2010.

    * The economies of scale of the on-going collaboration with GM after Closing the acquisition (February 2010) will continue to be leveraged in sourcing via ancillary agreements, with independent sourcing gradually increasing to reduce GM dependency and obtain improved access to other suppliers and the co-development of unique innovations.

    Source: http://www.saabsunited.com/2010/02/n...tion.html#more

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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    What is a "Dame Edna?" Is that some sort of Saab thing?
    Dame Edna is the comedic character created and played by the Australian comic legend Barry Humphries. She became pretty popular in English-speaking countries, with many TV and live appearances in Australia, UK and US. Her trademarks include large, ornament-havey, 50s-style spectacles. The populairty of the character led to the adoption of the nickname for the facelifted 2005+ Saab 9-5, which had the initially polarizing treatment around the headlamps.


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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    Oh, yikes. The only cross dressing I tolerate is the Madea series of motion pictures.

    And the mom in the original Hairspray movie.


    I'm glad they finally stopped production. It was getting ridiculous.

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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    This isn't goodbye. You can buy it in China soon when the Chinese company that bought the tooling receives it and sets it up.

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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    And the mom in the original Hairspray movie.
    Oh, that's a strange kind of tolerance - to me, Divine is kind of... "extreme"...

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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    Quote Originally Posted by Bravada View Post
    Oh, that's a strange kind of tolerance - to me, Divine is kind of... "extreme"...
    Well, I saw the movie when I was a kid and I had no idea she was a he, so that one was grandfathered in.

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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform
    The title, and the article in general, is clear proof of Bravada's excellence on this site!

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    R2-D2 Astromech Droid Smaart Aas Saabr's Avatar
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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    Quote Originally Posted by Buick61 View Post
    Oh, yikes. The only cross dressing I tolerate is the Madea series of motion pictures.

    And the mom in the original Hairspray movie.


    I'm glad they finally stopped production. It was getting ridiculous.
    That's British humour... people always say how "refined" English comedy is but whenever I watch British comedy it is always a man in a dress speaking in a hoity-toity voice... I mean every time!!

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    GMI Australia Correspondent Premium Member BBDOS CV8's Avatar
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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    Dame Edna Everage started out as a Barry Humphries skit in one of his stand up routines. She was the Housewife Superstar from Moonee Ponds, a boring middleclass suburb of Melbourne. 'She' was wearing the glittery glasses a long time before Elton John.

    She has a little old silent sidekick called Madge Allsop who pulled faces and nodded sympathetically who she alternately bullies and coddles, and the two of them do a routine lamenting the infirmities of age involving her and her husband (menopause, impotence, prostate cancer etc.) and he got away with murder when in-character.She is so well known she's a regular on British TV, hosted 'her' own variety show, sellout theatre appearances. She has done regular Royal Variety Command performances, is on first name terms with most of the Royal Family who she lampoons mercilessly and even co-hosted the Queen's Golden Jubille performance with Ben Elton.



    When he was a student, he caught a train on a Melbourne metropolitan line and bemused all his fellow travellers by being given a course of pre-arranged breakfast at each station through an open window. So one stop he got tea, another stop porridge, then cereal, then bacon and eggs.

    Another favourite chacter is Sir Les Patterson, Cultural Attache of Australai - a boozy, lecherous, bigotted bigmouth with rotten teeth and terrible manners. Exactly like you would imagine a colonial titled rum-pot blueblood from somewhere like Oz.





    Last edited by BBDOS CV8; 02-01-2010 at 06:45 PM.
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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    Quote Originally Posted by Smaart Aas Saabr View Post
    That's British humour... people always say how "refined" English comedy is but whenever I watch British comedy it is always a man in a dress speaking in a hoity-toity voice... I mean every time!!
    Remind me of my first times viewing Benny Hill...he was in drag often enough I thought it was called the Betty Hill show!
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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform


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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    Meanwhile the GM10/W-body still rolls on...
    "Here's to Mr. Iacocca and his failed experiment, the DeLorean!" - The Office

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    Re: Goodbye Dame Edna - farewell to the GM2900 platform

    I saw "Dame Edna" and the positive mention of a GM-Europe platform that spawned a not so hot Saturn here in the states....

    I said to myself, it must be Bravada. It was.

    I think I spend too much time here.


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