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Saab may be officially dead, having declared bankruptcy and shut their doors back in 2012, but their designs live on and are now officially in production in the form of the NEVS. What exactly is the NEVS and how is it a spiritual successor to the Saab name?
NEVS stands for National Electric Vehicle Sweden, which is the Swedish holding company that acquired all of Saab’s assets when it went bankrupt in 2012. In October, the company signed a deal with DiDi Chuxing, the Chinese equivalent of Uber, to add 1 million electric cars to their ridesharing network by 2020.
In December, they finally went into production on their electric vehicles.
The two electric cars being produced by NEVS are the 9-3 series sedan and the 9-3X series wagon. If you were a fan of Saab before they went belly up, these names probably seem familiar — that’s because they’re based on the now-defunct sedan and wagon that Saab produced, though these updated models will have completely electric engines instead of gasoline.
We don’t have any information yet about the battery specs or engine size, though NEVS has said that one charge should carry the car upwards of 300 kilometers or 186 miles.
The new electric cars will have plenty of bells and whistles though, including an onboard Wi-Fi hotspot for commuters, integrated smartphone controls, a host of different fleet management tools and, arguably the most important item for places like Beijing where air quality is low, a high tech cabin air filter that is supposed to be able to filter out 99% of hazardous materials.
At the beginning, NEVS is hoping to produce around 50,000 vehicles a year in their China-based plant but once it is fully up and running, this technological marvel will potentially be able to produce upwards of 220,000 cars a year. More information will be available as the cars start to roll off the assembly line. Hopefully, this push toward electric vehicles is just what China needs to turn their poor air quality around.