Saab Cancels All Warranty Coverage

 By Jim Gorzelany (of Forbes Magazine)
A Saab logo is pictured on a car at a Saab sho...
Image by AFP/Getty Images via @daylife

A leaked memo published by the website Autoblog indicates bankrupt automaker Saab has abruptly suspended warranty coverage on all its vehicles in North America, though owners may not be left as high and dry as originally feared.

Saab is apparently suspending all new car, powertrain, emissions and parts warranties, along with recall campaigns, certified pre-owned coverage and no-charge maintenance programs effective immediately. There’s no word, however, on whether this is a permanent or a temporary issue based on the automaker’s current bankruptcy proceedings, though the memo suggests that owners “keep receipts of all related warranty work done or services performed until further notice.”

Whatever stock of brand new Saab cars remains on dealers’ lots is to be sold “as is,” like some dubious merchandise advertised on Craig’s List.

Fortunately, General Motors just released a statement on the matter that should assuage recent Saab owners’ fears: “In the event Saab cannot or will not fulfill its obligations to administer the warranty programs with its U.S. and Canadian dealers through Saab Cars North America or otherwise, General Motors will take necessary steps to ensure that remaining warranty obligations on Saab vehicles marketed by GM in the United States and Canada will be honored.”

UPDATE: Consumer Reports’ website clarifies GM’s position with regard to Saab warranties, saying the company will honor them only for cars built before Jan. 1, 2010, which includes mainly Saab 9-3s, but not new redesigned 9-5s or 9-4Xs. Saab owners with models that fall within the applicable warranty period will be treated as creditors under Saab’s bankruptcy proceeding, and could be offered some coverage from Saab’s assets once they’re sold. Personally, we wouldn’t be holding our breaths over the possibility of that happening, neither would we consider buying a new “as is” Saab without warranty coverage, no matter how attractive any “fire sale” prices may subsequently become.

Here’s a link to a photocopy of the leaked memo via Autoblog.


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