Detroit, Mich.,-- Saab sales are continuing to accelerate at a record-breaking pace, with all-time volume records achieved globally and in Europe for the first quarter of 2006.
Worldwide sales increased to 34,192 cars during the first three months of the year, a 24 per cent increase against the same period last year. In Europe, a 29% increase produced sales of 23,895 cars. Both results are all-time records for the brand, the strong performance in Europe building on last year's annual volume record.
Each of Saab's top ten markets - accounting for 85 per cent of total sales- posted increases, including all-time record volumes in the UK, Spain and Belgium. Saab total sales in the United States were up 12%, and retail sales up 17%, lead by the ongoing success of the Saab 9-3 and the 9-7X SUV.
In addition, the launch of the Saab 9-3 SportCombi range, the introduction of a new top-of-the-line 2.8V6 turbo engine and the outstanding success of the E85-powered Saab 9-5 BioPower in Sweden, where it is the top-selling environmentally-friendly vehicle, have all contributed to Saab's strong global performance.
"We now have products in market segments where Saab was not represented before," says Saab Automobile Managing Director Janke Jonsson. "This is reflected in our excellent start to the year, with growth in all major markets including the United States.
"The launch of exciting concepts, such as the Saab Aero X in Geneva and the Saab BioPower Hybrid in Stockholm last month, is also focusing a great deal of attention on the Saab brand. It all means we can look forward to the rest of the year with great optimism."