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  • Muller wanted to drop the Saab griffin and return to airplane logo



    Just-Auto published an article about Muller saying he wanted to drop the griffin logo before Scania objected the use by NEVS.

    This is not really 'new' news in itself because we already saw the move of the Saab word-mark more prominently displayed on cars. The Griffin logo was already missing on the steering wheel and the rear of the newer models. The Saab websites didn't show the griffin either. However, it was still showing on wheels and the hood of the cars so it wasn't entirely missing either.

    We saw the airplane logo return on the Saab PhoeniX concept car so using the airplane logo doesn't come as a surprise.

    "I wanted to abolish the Griffin logo - I wanted to go back to the aeroplane logo," Muller told just-auto. It [Griffin] was a logo of Scania and Saab AB - it did not say anything. "It [aircraft symbol] was beautiful - it was going to replace the Griffin everywhere."
    I think the griffin logo always suited the brand very well and gave it some visual identification. What do you think? Glad to see the griffin gone or do you miss it?



    The good news is at least some of us are not the only ones who don't really understand the future of NEVS and Saab as a brand and car company.

    Muller said he wished NEVS "all the luck in the world" although added cryptically: "I don't understand their business model but who am I?"
    Read the article: Muller wanted to drop Saab Griffin logo

    The airplane logo in the Saab PhoeniX interior:



    Griffins on the wheels and hood of the 2012 Saab 9-3 Griffin

    This article was originally published in forum thread: Muller wanted to drop the Saab griffin and return to airplane logo started by Frank Wulfers View original post
    Comments 16 Comments
    1. nordwulf's Avatar
      nordwulf -
      I like the way the Peugeot lion is prominently displayed on the hood or in the grille. I think that would look great with the griffin on Saabs as well.

    1. ShaneB4Saab's Avatar
      ShaneB4Saab -
      The Griffin was an eye-catching feature. I don't understand why they would go back to a plane, especially since the 2 divisions split years ago.
    1. rpiereck's Avatar
      rpiereck -
      The griffin actually comes from the coat of arms of Skåne (or Scania), the Southermost province of Sweden, where Scania comes from. Coat of arms below:


      Until 1969 when SAAB and Scania merged the griffin belonged to Scania only, and SAAB AB used the airplane logo on all its cars. It wasn't until 1974, I think, that SAAB used the griffin, on the famous SAAB Scania logo that adorned the cars, trucks, airplanes and everything else that SAAB Scania made.


      SAAB Automobiles has been divorced from Scania for a while, and yet it continued to use the griffin because its most iconic modern cars, the 99 EMS Turbo, the 900 SPG/Aero, the 900 Cabrio, all had that symbol. The griffin ended up becoming a symbol that defined SAAB cars much like Ford's oval or Chevy's bowtie. Although SAAB is from Västra Götaland and its coast of arms has no griffin, it continued used Scania's symbol as its own due to recognition earned by the brand in the 70s/80s. (edit: take that back, the 99 didn't have the griffin, the first SAAB to use the griffin logo was the 900).

      I have no problem with SAAB losing the griffin as a logo, especially if the aim of the owners is to go back to SAAB's origins. It's a moot point anyway, as it seems we won't see SAABs for sale for a long time, or perhaps forever, as much as I'd like to see a new SAAB on the road.


      Perhaps SAAB should go to the airplane because of its roots, perhaps use a lion or a bull from Västra Götaland's coat of arms (above). Even better, however, would be to use a phoenix, which is on neither coat of arms. The mythical reborn bird would be a more fitting brand for SAAB if it manages to rise up again...

      PS: Dana Motors of Billings, Montana, a former SAAB dealer, has cleverly used a Phoenix as their own logo, which is obviously a throwback to their origins as the first SAAB dealer west of the Mississippi:
    1. nordwulf's Avatar
      nordwulf -
      I think they should come up with their own logo. Using the airplane image seems silly for an electric car. Something like this seems more appropriate.

      Attachment 8415
    1. rpiereck's Avatar
      rpiereck -
      Quote Originally Posted by Frank Wulfers View Post
      Using the airplane image seems silly for an electric car.
      Let's not forget what the first A in SAAB stands for...

      Maybe they should change the name to SEAB: Svenska Elbil AktieBolag.
    1. #1SAAB12-17-11's Avatar
      #1SAAB12-17-11 -
      I didn't know Muller had already made moves to phase-out the griffin logo. It was rather gaudy compared to other European marks but SAAB cultivated a very different brand image regardless. Mercedes and Audi get by with no colors, BMW and Volvo just one; SAAB's griffin had three!

      Though I like the airplane logo, messing with such a key element to your brand's identity is very dangerous. Following all the controversial changes GM had made to SAAB, perhaps the time would have been right to make a clean break and re-introduce the airplane to help cleanse everyone's memory of the recent past?
    1. Shazam's Avatar
      Shazam -
      I was always envious of emblems of car companies like Audi and Mercedes. The logos weren't a big "H" (Honda) or just a fancy script of the name (Ford and others). They were symbols that came to mean high quality cars that people desired. They symbols themselves had little to do with cars, yet had grown to be leading symbols in the car industry.
    1. tunnanxwd's Avatar
      tunnanxwd -
      I remember quite well before the whole Muller and Antonov mess erupted that SAAB marketing had announced they intended to drop not only the Griffin but the "Bjorn From Jets" themes as being symbols of aggression that they wanted to divorce themselves of to more represent their market segment of "school-marm", over edumucated, tree huggers. They were aiming for the more sensitive and non-performance oriented market segment. I had a number of posts on this back then and in tongue in cheek humor used to chuckle because it was quite true. That was when we saw the ads with the little falling leaf and such, that appealed to the intellect. Sad but true, the market dictates (like the GM decision to pull the plug on performance in the late 60's and get out of racing), and though we (at least most here), will miss cars like the TX and herald it as the last hurrah, Saab was in a rough spot.

      I would have loved to have seen SAAB stuff in the LS-1 and go toe-to-toe in that V-8 series along with the Holdens, Vectras and others .. the Speed Channel had a race every Sunday and I could hardly watch knowing "we" should have been in there.
    1. Burnsside42's Avatar
      Burnsside42 -
      Where's my electric Saab? lol I'd of been HAPPY to see anything as a logo with the continued production of Saab - I do like the old Airplane logo, and felt that when the logo lost the "Scania" designation they sort of went bland. I really like the large block lettering of SAAB on the last run of the cars - it would make it so the peeling emblem would never be a problem again!
    1. #1SAAB12-17-11's Avatar
      #1SAAB12-17-11 -
      "Born from Jets" was a complete disaster for SAAB. It really highlighted the superficiality of GM's brand point-of-difference (i.e. "badge engineering"), SAAB = Opel + $20K.

      My love for SAAB was built upon its relentless practicality: FWD for pulling through the snow, Turbo engines for greater torque and more efficient fuel economy, hatchback designs that could haul practically anything a small pick-up truck could manage. This is what made the brand great, not "jets."

      GM is managed by complete Bozos. The mess they made of SAAB is Exhibit A convicting them as charged.
    1. nordwulf's Avatar
      nordwulf -
      That could be the new slogan. SAAB - born from airplanes, destroyed and killed by GM bozos
    1. #1SAAB12-17-11's Avatar
      #1SAAB12-17-11 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Frank Wulfers View Post
      That could be the new slogan. SAAB - born from airplanes, destroyed and killed by GM bozos
      Perhaps a Paint Shop treatment on GM's SAAB griffin is in order?
    1. tunnanxwd's Avatar
      tunnanxwd -
      #1SAAB12 .... I tend to agree with you on the hauling capacity of that "classic" 900 but that and the roll and cage protection and as a rally guy (club stuff not full tilt boogie), that was a huge selling feature.

      I also think SAAB had committed it's own share of sins letting designs stagnate and that the GM bashing is just too easy and in many ways just unfounded. They were on the ropes building the same 900 for how many years, was it 13, before GM came into the picture. That said, I like my 2008 a little more each day but (aside from my 9000 from hell), I didn't find the early turbos that great and ended up just buying the normally aspirated 900. Even the SPG didn't make the hair on my neck stand up .... a good car for sure but not quite enough to make me get all warm and fuzzy.

      Heck, our 1995 900 base was owned by my wife and despite it's GM origins out distanced our early 900's and would have probably made the 200,000 mark if my teen son didn't .... well, do what teen sons do to cars. Aside from the 9000 from hell, our "made in Finland", final 1989 classic was a nice car, I love sitting along side the road in a car that would not run, probably the computer but still for a low mile car? It was so bad I had to sell it off well before it's time.

      Why did I keep coming back? It started with the rally stuff and I didn't need lots of power for that, AWD's were a must for us and they lost me for a few years but just squeaked by with the TX types and the Vtuner is what keeps me happy.

      SAAB seemed to never really find a niche or have any definition or substance that you could put your finger on, they held back on horsepower, were comfy in the Aero series or 9-5's but the base seats are pretty bad yet Muller held the prices high? He was trying to command a premium car price for a warmed over TV dinner. IMHO, the 9-3 was just not worth it. The same car I paid $24k for in 2009, Mulller wanted around $30k for, heck I could have had a base 9-3 for 18,000 (and change), in 2009 under GM yet Muller held firm on the "list price". Same car and they wanted a pile of cash more! That is not the way to keep the production line rolling, folks working while the company is trying to recover, and no, a handful of "Independence Editions" were hardly the solution, cobbled together from the parts laying around the shop. Hell, even the Top Gear boys who have no love of GM put a lot of the blame in SAAB's lap. In the end, we are in a world wide economic crisis with the US (and GM), in deep shizz so there will be attrition and as we used to say in the military ... "the loss of sensitive receptors" ... or collateral fallout.

      With the US "taking the lead" in the loss of jobs and our rapidly failingeconomy the Euro's in far better shape .... why didn't Sweden bail out SAAB?
    1. nordwulf's Avatar
      nordwulf -
      The Euro is in better shape than the US? Hmmm, not sure if the Greeks and the rest of Europe agree on that. Oh wait, The EU just won the Nobel prize for Peace. That makes everything better.. It sometimes seems there is a war going on within the EU against the EU.

      I still don't know if GM held Saab back or if Saab didn't offer the cars the market wanted. They definitely weren't up in the Big 3 German territory, even though their prices were. And that caught up to them with having to offer huge discounts in the US. Nothing says market confidence better when you have to clear out year-end models with 10K rebates. Many Saab enthusiasts certainly didn't want to pay full price. I wouldn't pay 35K+ for a reasonably optioned 9-3 or $45K for a 9-5. I always thought they should have gone downstream like VW did with their offerings in the US. Sell a 9-3 for $20K and a 9-5 for $30K. That would have grown the brand, make dealers happy with volume service and still have a near-premium brand.

      Saab was just to small and too far behind the real world with their products. There just wasn't a business case for a small wannabe premium car brand that sells 100K cars a year. The passionate enthusiast community was great but they didn't want to buy the cars for full price either.
    1. tunnanxwd's Avatar
      tunnanxwd -
      Not necessarily the Euro, but as of late the Scandinavians were said to have some of the best standard of living with Norway at the top. Sure, there are some cracks beginning to show but when I look at the progression (or regression), of the buying power of the USD, I am amazed that I now have a hard time affording what I took for granted 20 years ago.

      A few of you folks have a greater understanding of the relative values and I defer to that. Perhaps the first crack in the US auto buying trends was the "lease versus buy" phenomena. My friend was a manager of a Nissan and BMW dealership and back in 1980 or so, he defined "the lease" as putting a person in a car they really couldn't afford. I know I am "odd" by most standards, but I would prefer to have a SAAB or whatever, without a sun roof, upscale stereo and all of the fancy doo-dads. I want to buy what I can afford and God bless you if you can afford all of the electronics. What the US needs now are cars that are durable and have ease of maintenance. Perhaps that is too simplistic and naive?
    1. nordwulf's Avatar
      nordwulf -
      Aren't the new American cars that are reliable and last for a long time made by Toyota and Honda? Luxury and performance cars are often defined by the electronic gizmo's they have and brand perception than the actual quality. Mercedes engineers were told not to make the same long-lasting quality like the W124 anymore. Car manufacturers only sell cars by using planned obsolescence, not by making long-lasting cars. Only around 2008 (after the mid-90s decline), Mercedes figured out buyers really wanted quality and well-made cars.

      Do we need lane-guidance systems and blind-spot warning systems? If manufacturers would design cars the way you can actually see out of, we wouldn't need backup cameras or parking sensors. My W124 had such good visibility, I could park within a few inches from another car without the need to use a backup camera.
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