Car Makers Series: Sweden (9C) Rare

Here’s something you probably didn’t know about Swedish Car Companies, but may have gotten curios about as you read through the Swedish part of our Automakers Series:

The AB you keep seeing after all the official car company names stands for Aktiebolag (Swedish: Limited Company on shares). So it’s used like the US companies use Inc. or Co.

Today’s final installment in the Swedish chapter of our Auto Makers Series will focus on less common Swedish Makers, Caresto (2004–present), Esther (1987–present), Von Braun Holding Company (2014–present) though the last two don’t have wiki pages so it could be hard to get info.

I could also move Koenigsegg (1994–present) here as they’re a bespoke maker ??

Uniti

Uniti is a Sweden-based electric car manufacturer that has achieved success over the past few years with their vehicles. Uniti was founded in 2015 by Lewis Horne and Sharad Sindh, with the mission to create an affordable, sustainable and efficient form of city transportation.

Since its founding, Uniti has grown in size and production capacity. They now employ some 200 people in offices around Europe and have manufacturing sites in Germany and Lithuania.

Prototype One

Uniti’s first vehicle, called “Prototype One” which was produced as a limited run of five vehicles in 2018. Their most popular model is the Uniti One, an all-electric four-seater hatchback that can reach up to 120 mph (193 km/h). The company’s most recent vehicle is the Uniti Life, an all-electric crossover SUV that seats six passengers and has dual motor power.

Each year Uniti produces thousands of cars, primarily sold within their biggest markets: the UK, France and Norway. As they continue to grow, they plan to expand this market further across Europe while also entering new markets such as Japan and China.

Founders, Horne and Sindh, have worked hard to bring together what they call “ecological expertise” to create a unique vision for electric cars that are not only efficient but also accessible for everyday drivers. With this goal in mind, Uniti has been successful at avoiding any major failures or pitfalls on their journey towards becoming a top electric vehicle company.

Koenigsegg

Founded in 1994 by Christian von Koenigsegg, Swedish car maker Koenigsegg has grown to become one of the world’s leading boutique hypercar manufacturers. Based in Ängelholm, Sweden, their tiny size relative to other car companies – no more than 20 cars per year are produced – belies the impact that the company has had on the world of luxury automobiles.

The Koenigsegg CC prototype which became the basis for future models of the company.

Koenigsegg began making cars back in 2002 with their prototype model, the CC8S. This was followed by their first production car, the CCR, and subsequent models such as the CCX series, Agera RS, Regera and Jesko. Their most popular model is currently the Agera RS which features an innovative turbocharged 5.0-litre V8 engine and a top speed of over 257 mph (414 km/h). The most recent addition to their line-up is an even more advanced version of this vehicle, called the “Agera RSR”.

Koenigsegg manufactures its vehicles in facilities across Europe and Asia. Its biggest market is currently China where it has exclusive distribution agreements with several major dealerships. They have recently announced plans to expand into electric vehicle technology with testing set to begin in 2021.

Christian von Koenigsegg remains at the helm of Koenigsegg but he is quick to credit his team for their contribution towards its success over the years. Together they have created a special brand of highly innovative cars that have found fans around the world and pushed boundaries both technically and aesthetically.

Records Set

February 2005 Guinness Book of Records “fastest production car,” 241.009 mph on a circular track. Held until September 2005 when the Bugatti Veyron broke the record by attaining a speed of 253.81 mph.

The Agera RS World Record Car 

In 2008, sport auto conducted a 0–186–0 mph test for production cars, CCX winning the event in a total time of 29.2 seconds.

September 2011, the Agera R broke the Guinness World Record for 0–300 km/h with a time of 14.53 seconds.

November 2017, an Agera RS set a new record for the world’s fastest production car with an average speed of 277.87 mph.

September 2019, Koenigsegg set a new 0–400–0 km/h world record with a time of 31.49 seconds in their Regera.

Husqvarna

Husqvarna was founded near the town of Huskvarna in Sweden in 1689. The company started out as a maker of muskets, and the Husqvarna logo still depicts a gun sight viewed from the end of the barrel. They are now a privately held company headquartered in Austria, best known for making motorcycles. However, the car story is interesting.

Of course, Husqvarna is known for manufacturing a wide variety of motorized products like chainsaws, snowmobiles, and even sewing machines. In the US, the company leverages the way the name sounds similar to the dog breed, Husky, with the slogan, “nothing runs like a Husky.” Most Americans assume Husqvarna is the Swedish word for Husky, which it is not.

The name actually roughly translates to mean “house of arms.” This reflects the company’s long history of producing high quality weapons, and then later on, vehicles. The name has been in use since 1689 when the company was first founded by its original founder, King Karl IX.

As a Car Maker

As a Swedish car maker they are famous for producing high performance cars and SUVs. Founded in 1689, Husqvarna is one of the oldest companies in the automotive industry and has been headquartered in Vällingby, Sweden since its inception. The company remains relatively small compared to other major car manufacturers, with a production capacity of just over 50,000 cars per year.

Volvo, XC 90 (2021) Made by Husqvarna

Despite their car division’s smaller size, Husqvarna has had a major impact on the world of automotive engineering. In fact, they are credited with popularizing the use of front-wheel drive vehicles as early as 1902! Over the years, they have produced several prototype and production vehicles including the P2 prototype (released in 1901), the V5 (their most popular model) and their most recent car, the X7 SUV.

The success of Husqvarna can be largely attributed to its founder Viktor Sennerfeldt who developed his first engine at age 17 – and it was this same engine that he used to power his automobiles throughout his life. Despite Sennerfeldt’s innovative designs and passion for engineering, economic pressures forced him to close down operations in 1937 due to increasing debts from suppliers.

Husqvarna Novolette moped

The company was revived in 1956 by Swedish industrialist Thor Johnson who saw potential in the brand. Johnson set about rebuilding the company and modernizing it to make use of new technology to produce superior vehicles. After much hard work and dedication, Husqvarna was relaunched with a range of cars that showcased their engineering expertise and set the tone for their future success.

Today, Husqvarna still stands strong as a brand synonymous with superior performance and style. As such, it continues to make waves in countries around the globe – especially in Europe where it has become one of the best-selling car manufacturers according to recent statistics. With plans for further expansion into North America as well as Asia Pacific over the next five years, there is no doubt that Husqvarna will remain one of the premier names in luxury vehicle manufacturing for years to come.

Best Vehicles

Husqvarna’s best selling vehicles are their luxury SUVs, specifically the XC 90. This model is known for its sleek design and powerful engine, as well as its impeccable safety ratings. The XC90 has consistently been praised by critics and customers alike for its reliability and performance. Additionally, the Swedish carmaker offers a range of other vehicles that have gained popularity over the years such as their performance cars, wagons, and SUVs.

Antoine Méo at the 2010 GP of Turkey

The company also produces motorcycles which have experienced increasing success in recent years. Husqvarna’s top motorcycle model is the Svartpilen 701. This powerful bike is powered by a 693 cc single-cylinder engine that delivers an agile ride and excellent acceleration. It also has modern features such as LED lighting, adjustable suspension and Brembo brakes. The Svartpilen 701 is renowned for its robust design, comfortable ride, and great handling. Additionally, it has earned accolades from critics for its good looks and performance.

Used Cars With the Lowest Prices and Longest Lifespans

Toyota Camry

Purchasing a used car can be a cost-effective way to get a reliable vehicle, especially if you are on a budget. While it is essential to research and thoroughly inspect a used car before purchasing, certain models tend to have lower prices and longer lifespans.

However, a recent survey by iSeeCars found that out of two million cars, some of the best ones you’ll get for your buck include the hybrid Camry, Ford Fusion, Dodge Grand Caravan, Toyota Avalon, Toyota Prius, and Chevrolet Impala.

We’ve compiled the following article to help you make an informed decision when you’re in the market for used cars with the lowest prices and longest lifespans.

Toyota Camry

One option to consider is the Toyota Camry. This mid-size sedan has a reputation for being reliable and long-lasting, with many models reaching over 200,000 miles with proper maintenance. This car also has a strong resale value, which can help lower its initial purchase price.

Honda Civic

Honda Civic

Another option is the Honda Civic. This compact car is known for its fuel efficiency and longevity, with many models reaching over 200,000 miles. The Civic has a strong reputation for reliability, making it a good choice for those looking for a used car.

Toyota Corolla

Corolla

The Toyota Corolla is another reliable choice for a used car with a low price and long lifespan. This compact car has a reputation for being fuel-efficient and easy to maintain, and many models have been known to reach over 150,000 miles.

The Corolla is also popular among used car buyers due to its substantial resale value.

Honda Odyssey

The Honda Odyssey minivan is a good option for those looking for a larger vehicle. The Odyssey is known for its durability and reliability, and many models have been known to reach over 200,000 miles with proper maintenance.

This car has a spacious interior and a variety of features that make it a popular choice for families.

In Conclusion

When shopping for a used car, it is important to do your research and carefully inspect the vehicle before making a purchase. This may include getting a vehicle history report, having a mechanic inspect the car, and test-driving it to ensure it is in good condition. A mobile inspection service will do all of this for you and give your a report, which can save you a lot of money in the long run.

In addition to these models mentioned above, it is worth considering vehicles made by other manufacturers such as Subaru, Mazda, and Hyundai. These companies have a reputation for producing reliable and long-lasting vehicles that can be found at reasonable prices on the used car market.

It is also essential to consider the cost of maintenance and repairs, as these can add up over time and affect the overall cost of owning a used car.

Overall, purchasing a used car can be a cost-effective way to get a reliable vehicle, especially if you choose a model with a reputation for low prices and a long lifespan. By researching and thoroughly inspecting the car before making a purchase, you can find a used car that meets your needs and fits your budget.

Dodge Airbag Recall Issues

Dodge has had several airbag recall issues in recent years. In 2017, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced a recall of over 1 million Dodge vehicles due to a problem with the airbag system.

This was part of the Takata recall, where tens of millions of cars with Takata airbags, including Dodge Magnum Wagons, Charger muscle cars and Dodge Challengers, were recalled. Humidity and high heat were the underlying factors that caused the airbags to explode when deployed.

The issue was caused by a defect in the airbag control module, which could prevent the airbags from deploying in the event of a crash. This defect could increase the risk of injury or death to the vehicle’s occupants.

More recently, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration released news detailing a fatal crash involving a 2010 Chrysler 300. The accident raptured the driver’s airbag inflator. According to the same news report, five people have been killed this year in airbag-related crashes.

However, the company came out with a statement saying that the problem might be related to chemical properties which deteriorate over time, especially when exposed to hot environments and climates.

On December 19 (Monday), 2022, Stellantis, through its U.S. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FAC), re-affirmed the alert issued in November of the same year:

  • Two people lost their lives in separate crashes involving exploding Takata airbags in Dodge Chargers (the 2010 models)
  • Owners of Dodge Magnums, Challengers, Chargers and Chrysler 300s should call 833-585-0144 and have their vehicles serviced and towed for free.
  • Owners are also advised to check whether their cars have open Takata airbags and schedule a free repair as soon as possible.

In addition to this recall, Dodge has also had a number of other airbag-related recalls in recent years. In 2018, the NHTSA announced a recall of thousands of Dodge vehicles due to a problem with the airbag system’s software. This defect would cause the airbags to deploy unexpectedly, increasing the risk of injury or death to the vehicle’s occupants.

In 2019 and 2021, Dodge announced another recall of over 200,000 vehicles due to a problem with the airbag system. This recall was issued after it was discovered that the airbags could potentially rupture.

It’s important for drivers of affected vehicles to be aware of these recalls and to have their vehicles repaired as soon as possible. If you own a Dodge vehicle and are unsure if it is affected by any of these recalls, you can check the NHTSA’s website or contact your local Dodge dealer for more information.

In Conclusion

Overall, the airbag recall issues affecting Dodge vehicles highlight the importance of regularly checking for and addressing any potential safety issues with your vehicle.

Left unrepaired these airbags present a constant source of danger as the risk of explosion grows with every passing day. Every day that passes without a replacement or service for these airbags, you’re putting yourself and your family in harm’s way.

By staying informed and having your vehicle repaired as needed, you can help to ensure the safety of yourself and your passengers on the road.

2023 Chevrolet COPO Camaro Review

Born in 1969 and later reintroduced in 2012, the COPO Camaro continues its long-standing tradition of Chevys that aren’t meant for mass production with the all new 2023 Chevrolet COPO Camaro.

The Engine

One of the standout features of the COPO Camaro is its engine. The car is available in three powertrain options for the 2023 version. They include the naturally aspirated COPO 427, the fuel-injected big-block 632 and the LSX based 350 engine, which is supercharged.

These engines can produce upwards of 400 horsepower, giving the COPO Camaro plenty of grunts to get off the line quickly.

The Chevrolet COPO Camaro is a limited-production muscle car that is designed specifically for drag racing. It is built on the same platform as the regular Camaro but features several performance upgrades and specialized components that make it capable of running quarter-mile times in the low eights.

Handling

In terms of handling and suspension, the COPO Camaro is built for straight-line speed. It features a solid rear axle, which helps reduce weight and improve traction, and a high-performance suspension setup designed to keep the car planted and stable at high speeds.

Inside, the COPO Camaro is relatively spartan, focusing on function over form. It features racing-style seats and a roll cage to help protect the driver in the event of a crash, as well as a stripped-down dashboard with minimal distractions.

Price

Like other models in this line, the 2023 COPO Camaro is sold without

Any title or VIN. Orders typically require a $15,000 deposit, as the giant car manufacturer confirmed.

Although Chevy is yet to confirm the number of cars that will be available, the automaker has traditionally offered about 69 units per year.

Interior

Although much is not known about the interior, it’s safe to assume that the interior of a COPO Camaro is similar to that of a regular Camaro, but it may have some additional features or modifications to make it more suitable for racing.

Some features that you might find on the inside of a COPO Camaro include:

  1. Racing seats: These are typically more heavily bolstered than regular seats to help keep the driver securely in place during high-G turns and acceleration.
  2. Racing harnesses: These are used in place of regular seat belts to provide additional support and restraint in the event of a crash.
  3. Roll cage: A roll cage is a structural element that is added to the inside of the car to provide additional protection in the event of a rollover or collision.
  4. Racing steering wheel: A racing steering wheel may be smaller and more aggressively shaped than a regular steering wheel to provide a more comfortable and secure grip.
  5. Racing pedals: These are typically wider and more heavily padded than regular pedals, to make it easier to apply pressure when accelerating or braking.
  6. Racing shifter: A racing shifter may have a shorter throw and a more precise action than a regular shifter, to make it easier to shift gears quickly and accurately.

Bottom Line

Overall, the Chevrolet COPO Camaro is a formidable drag racing machine that is sure to impress even the most seasoned gearheads. Its powerful engines and specialized components enable it to run quarter-mile times that few other production cars can match. Its no-frills interior and suspension setup ensure that it is built for speed from the ground up.

If you’re in the market for a high-performance muscle car and want something a little bit different from the norm, the COPO Camaro is definitely worth considering.

Preventing Issues With Your Diesel Truck (Cold Weather related)

Getting your diesel engine to start and run in the freezing temperatures of the winter season is just one common issue with all diesel trucks. We’ve prepared the following article to help you understand and prevent issues with your diesel truck during winter.

What are the Most Common Issues with Diesel Trucks in Cold Weather?

Here are some of the common issues diesel trucks face during cold weather:

Fuel Gelling

As the name suggests, fuel gelling is a situation where the fuel in your tank thickens to the point it feels and looks like ‘gel’.

The problem with diesel fuel is that it can gel when it gets cold. This happens because the hydrocarbons in diesel are not soluble in water, so they form crystals when they get cold.

When this happens, the engine will stop running because there will be no way for the fuel to reach all of the cylinders.

How To Prevent This

Some fuel companies offer a winter blend which allows the truck to have better properties during the winter. It’s costlier than your typical diesel gas, but it will keep the truck running during this season.

Other options you should consider to keep fuel from gelling include;

1) Add an anti-gel additive to your diesel before winter starts

2) Keep your truck’s engine warm by running it for 10 minutes every hour or so during winter

Dirty Fuel Filters

Dirty fuel filters are the most common cause of no engine starts and stalls. This goes hand in hand with fuel gelling because when your fuel is at risk of gelling, dirty fuel can be your worst nightmare.

Diesel Fuel Filter

You’ll know if your fuel filter needs changing when you get poor engine performance, have a hard time starting your truck, experience stalling when driving, or have a random misfire.

How to Prevent This

As a rule of thumb, replacing your fuel filter before or at the beginning of the winter season would be best. You can also keep an extra fuel filter in your car, especially during the cold seasons. 

Buildup of Deposits

A build-up of deposits is not an issue specific to the winter season, as the build-up happens in the combustion chamber over time. Diesel engines are prone to a build-up of carbon deposits inside the engine.

With the accumulation of deposits, fuel consumption will increase, and the engine will suffer considerable power loss.

How To Prevent This

The only way to prevent this is by treating the diesel engine and cleaning out the fuel injectors.

Here are some ways to clean your fuel injectors:

  • Clean manually – You can manually disassemble the fuel injectors and clean them manually. However, we recommend finding a qualified professional to help you as this can be a thorough and time-consuming affair.
  • Ultrasonic Waves – Take your truck to a professional garage which uses ultrasonic waves to clean the debris.
  • Diesel Treatment – Using an additive called diesel treatment has proven to be an effective method of cleaning fuel injectors. It’s also cost-effective and easy to use.

How To Address a Cold Start

First, check the dipstick to see if the engine oil is fluid. Remember, diesel engine oil is prone to gelling, meaning it could be completely solid.

If this is the case, do not attempt to start it. Use an external heat source to return the oil to its natural viscous state. You; need to use a steamer or a blow heater to generate heat.

2023 Honda Accord Review

What’s New for the 2023 Honda Accord?

Picture Link

The Honda Accord has long been one of America’s favorite cars for a good reason. It’s reliable, efficient, and packed with features that make life on the road a breeze. But don’t take our word for it – ask any of the millions of Accord owners out there.

Now, the Accord is getting even better for 2023. Honda has revealed many new updates and improvements designed to make this already great car even better. So what’s new for the 2023 Honda Accord? Let’s take a look.

First up is an all-new front-end design. The grille has been completely redesigned, and the headlights now feature LED daytime running lights. The overall effect is a more modern look that will help the Accord stand out on the road. Inside, the most noticeable change is the new 10.2-inch infotainment display.

This sleek new system is easy to use and packed with features, including Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration. And speaking of technology, all Accords will now come standard with Honda’s Sensing suite of safety and driver-assist features. This includes adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, and automatic high beams.

Performance

The 2023 Honda Accord is a reliable family car that’s been around for decades. It’s affordable and efficient, and it comes with a variety of new features that make it a great choice for anyone looking for a new car.

The 2-liter four-cylinder engine is powerful, efficient, and available in various trim levels. The base model is a great choice for anyone looking for an affordable car, and the EX/L model is great for anyone who wants a more powerful engine. The Accord is a great car for anyone who wants a reliable, affordable, and efficient car.

Cargo, Interior, and Comfort

We all know that the 2023 Honda Accord is one of the year’s most anticipated cars. And rightfully so – it’s a sleek, stylish, and technologically advanced car that’s sure to turn heads. But what about the Accord’s interior? What can we expect in terms of comfort and cargo space?

Well, first things first – the Accord’s interior is stunning. The seats are comfortable and spacious, and the cabin is incredibly quiet. As for cargo space, you can expect a sizable trunk and plenty of room for storing all your gear.

Fuel Economy

The 2023 Honda Accord is one of the most fuel-efficient cars on the market, with a city mpg of 30 and a highway mpg of 38. The turbo 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine is extremely efficient, and the hybrid powertrain is even more efficient, with a city mpg of 48 and a highway mpg of 47. The 2023 Honda Accord is the perfect car for anyone who wants to save money on fuel costs.

With its combination of style, substance, and affordability, the Accord has everything you need in a car – and then some. And that’s why it remains one of America’s best-selling cars year after year. If you’re looking for a car that does it all, look no further than the Honda Accord.

Automakers Series: Sweden (9B) SAAB/Scania

We begin our journey of Swedish car makers with SAAB, even though they are now defunct, because to the American mind, SAAB is one of the two big car makers in Sweden (alongside Volvo which we already covered in Part 9A.) As you will soon see, the whole saga is quite the soap opera.

SAAB

A defunct car manufacturer that was founded in Sweden in 1945. The first production model, the Saab 92, was launched in 1949. In 1968 the parent company merged with Scania-Vabis, and ten years later the Saab 900 was launched, in time becoming Saab’s best-selling model. In the mid-1980s the new Saab 9000 model also appeared.

In 1989, the automotive part of SAAB Scania was spun off into a company called Saab Automobile AB, which GM soon bought half of. This era gave birth to two landmark models the Saab 9-3 and the Saab 9-5. In year 2,000, GM bought the rest of SAAB Auto AB. In 2010 they flipped it to Dutch automobile manufacturer Spyker Cars N.V.

A year later the company struggled to remain solvent. They attempted to sell to a Chinese manufacturer, but GM blocked the deal, as they objected to the possibility of their technology going to China.

SAAB The Beginning

To understand a little of what happens next we must go back to the very beginning. SAAB started it’s life “Svenska Aeroplan Aktiebolaget” (Swedish for “Swedish aeroplane corporation”), a Swedish Airplane Maker that would eventually become an aerospace and defence company. In 1937 however, the company formed expressly for the purpose of building aircraft for the Swedish Air Force to protect the country’s neutrality as Europe moved closer to World War II. (History buffs will tell you how that turned out.)

As the market for fighters began to peter out, the company began looking to diversify. Cars were a natural choice and part of the Trollhättan factory was converted to build Project 92. BTW SAAB 91 was a single engine trainer aircraft. They pragmatically moved right to the next project.

Side note: While the aircraft headquarters remained in Linköping the car division would eventually be run entirely out of Trollhättan.
SAAB 96 w/ Trademark Grill Shape.

The company made four prototypes named “Ursaab” or “original Saab”, numbered 92001 through to 92004, before designing the production model, the Saab 92, in 1949. 20,000 cars were sold through the mid-1950s. In 1955 the thoroughly redesigned and re-engineered SAAB 93 gained a third cylinder and what would become a trademark grill shape.

1960 brought another big makeover, the SAAB 96, which would be the first car widely exported. The car was both odd and popular, selling nearly 550,000. All these early models of SAAB featured the 3-cylinder 2-cycle engine, which required adding oil to the gas tank, and all were front-wheel drive. They also featured “freewheeling” a clutchless column shifter.

Finally in 1968, SAAB designed their SAAB 99 which was not only a complete break from their early models, it introduced most of the hallmark features which would be included in all subsequent models. Features like wraparound windscreen, self-repairing bumpers, headlamp washers and side-impact door beams.

SAAB did have a stint with Scania which will be detailed in the Scania Section below.

The End of SAAB

After many years establishing a sound engineering reputation and ultimately a luxury price tag, Saab failed to build its customer base beyond its niche following. June 2012, a newly formed company called National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS) had bought Saab Automobile’s bankrupt estate. NEVS’ plan was to build only purely electric vehicles with an electric version of the current 9-3 model available in 2013/2014, as well as to continue development of the replacement to the 9–3, the PhoeniX. GM continued to refuse licensing of the technology in the Saab 9-5 and 9-4X, so these models would not be produced.

Full production restarted on December 2013. These were gas-powered 9-3 Aero sedans just like before the bankruptcy. The goal was to restart supply chain re-establish distribution while attempting to develop new, all Electric, NEVS-Saab products. NEVS lost its license to manufacture automobiles under the Saab name in the summer of 2014 (SAAB aerospace retained that authority). NEVS was able to create an EV version of the Saab 9-3, which will go into furthur below, but the name SAAB on cars appears to be gone forever.

NEVS

It won’t surprise you that the company headquarters is in Trollhättan, Sweden as the company formed to buy SAAB and create a line of EV’s on the 9-3 design. They were set to start manufacturing in 2017. To do that they formed a few strategic partnerships starting in 2015 with a collaboration agreement between them and the Chinese company Panda New Energy. They also signed a battery contract with Contemporary Amperex Technology in 2017.

There were some bumps along the way as in early 2019, NEVS acquired a 20% stake in Koenigsegg for €150 million, which Koenigsegg has since bought back. Also in 2019, Chinese Real Estate Conglomerate,  Evergrande Group bought 51% of NEVs. (Technically through one of their subsidiaries which was no more connected to the auto industry either.) Evergrande expanded to full ownership in 2020 and decided to privatize, however, by 2021 Evergrande, the parent company, was in deep financial trouble. They began looking to sell off their car investment. When they do, the marque will likely change.

Scania AB

Logo is a three spoke bicycle gear on a modified crest of Skane.

Maskinfabriks-aktiebolaget Scania (I know, gesundheit), was a Swedish bicycle manufacturer established in Malmö in 1900. The company rapidly expanded to manufacture other products like precision gears, vacuum cleaners, cars and trucks (and engines). They officially went defunct in 1911 when they merged with Vabis, to form Scania-Vabis.

We’d could just jump to Scania-Vabis except that the story of how Scania Manufacturing got into cars is interesting and really where our story begins.

British bicycle manufacturer Humber & Co started a Swedish subsidiary in Malmö in 1896, but moved their operations to Stockholm in 1900. Local entrepreneurs taking over the Malmö workshop and continued making bikes under the new name Scania, which was the term the romans gave to Skåne.

The Scania A1, their first car, was prototyped a year later and went into production in 1903. It was soon followed by their first line of trucks. By importing engines, gearboxes and other parts imported from France and Germany, the company made and sold their first 70 automobiles by 1908. At that point they began making their own engines.

From the 1909 trip from Malmö to Stockholm

The first export sale of a Scania truck was in 1910, to Saint Petersburg, Russia to be used as a cable repair truck for its tramway. A group of six factory reps drove 1.8 tonnes of cargo, 520-kilometres in three days (Malmö to Stockholm) which was the first long distance motorized cargo trip in Sweden. It’s considered a huge achievement.

The engines were the most successful part of the business for Scania, so they stopped making anything else, including bikes, and started looking for a coach builder to partner with. Enter Vabis.

Steel manufacturer Surahammars Bruk, opened Vabis (Vagnfabriks Aktiebolaget i Södertelge) in 1891, but his coachworks business was in bad shape by 1910. The companies merged to form Scania-Vabis (later Scania AB) Vabis was based in Södertälje and the Scania part of the business eventually migrated there (ironically out of Skåne.)

Scania-Vabis

Today Scania AB is a major Swedish manufacturer of commercial vehicles—specifically heavy lorries, trucks and buses as well as large diesel engines for marine and industrial use. They are a worldwide operation with production facilities in Sweden, France, the Netherlands, Thailand, China, India, Argentina, Brazil, Poland, Russia and Finland.

Scania has modern Scania is a subsidiary of Traton, part of the Volkswagen Group. But the early years were interesting.

Sweden had plenty of cheap import cars in the early 1910’s so Scania_Vabis decided to focus on luxury cars and sports cars. Their limos were pretty successful but profits were stagnating when WWI broke out and the company shifted to war vehicle production to supply the Swedish Army.

After the war, Scania decided to continue building trucks. Sadly, it put them in competition with all the surplus trucks from the war. By 1921 they were broke. An infusion of cash from by the Wallenberg family by way of one of their banks.

Scania-Vabis manufactured briefly in Denmark and Norway as well as Sweden, but WWII shifted them to military vehicles.

They expanded their target market in the 1950’s becoming agents for the Willys Jeep and the Volkswagen Beetle, even rivaling Volvo with their 1954 L71 Regent truck. By the end of the 1950s, their market-share in Sweden was between 40 and 50%, (70% in the heaviest truck sector). Exports accounted for around 10% of sales in 1950’s but they expanded that to 50% by 1960.

Scania truck (L80 successor to the Scania-Vabis L56)

Part of their success was a Norway based company called Beers. After becoming the official importer of trucks for Scania-Vabis, Beers offered things like training programmed for both mechanics and drivers,  free twice-yearly overhauls of their customers vehicles, and mobile service throughout the Netherlands with their custom-equipped service trucks. After Beers took this concept to 20% market share in Norway, Scania began rolling out similar programs at home and in other countries where they had dealerships.

The 60’s brought massive growth to the company beginning with a plant in Brazil. Aside from their early attempts to build in nearby Denmark and Norway, all vehicles were made at the original plant in Södertälje. The new plant in Brazil took two years, but was so successful at growing their sales, they built another in Zwolle, Netherlands, from which they could deal trucks more effectively into France and Germany. Expansion continued from there, not just new factories, but also by buying up companies that had once made parts for them and their competitors.

After a lawsuit from Mercedes forces a logo change in 1968, Scania rebranded and dropped Vabis from their name. They also gave new model designations to all vehicles produced afterward.

Saab-Scania (1969–1989)

In 1969, Saab AB merged with the Swedish commercial vehicle manufacturer Scania-Vabis AB to form Saab-Scania AB, under the Wallenberg family umbrella.

The 99 range was expanded in 1973 with the addition of a combi-coupe model, a body style which became synonymous with Saab. The millionth Saab automobile was produced in 1976.

Scania R 730 LA4x2MNB

Saab entered into an agreement with Fiat in 1978 to sell a rebadged Lancia Delta as the Saab 600 and jointly develop a new platform. The agreement yielded 1985’s Saab 9000, sister to the Alfa Romeo 164, Fiat Croma and Lancia Thema; all rode atop a common Type Four chassis. The 9000 was Saab’s first proper luxury car but failed to achieve the planned sales volume.

1978 also was the first year for the 99’s replacement: the Saab 900. Nearly one million 900s would be produced, making it Saab’s best-selling and most iconic model. A popular convertible version followed in 1986, all of which were made at the Saab-Valmet factory in Finland, making up nearly 20% of 900 sales. Even today, the “classic 900” retains a cult following.

Scania Post SAAB

After the SAAB era, Scania survived two takeover attempts. One by Volvo in 1999, which would have created the second largest Heavy Truck manufacturer in the world. The second in 2006 when German truckmaker MAN AG launched a hostile offer. MAN AG later dropped its hostile offer, but managed to increase voting rights to 17% in 2008.

Volkswagen gained ownership of Scania by first buying Volvo’s stake in 2000. then bought out Investor AB in March 2008, raising its share to 70.94%. Apparently this time the EU didn’t step in to block the VW from a monopoly like they had Volvo, and by January 2015, Volkswagen controlled 100% of the shares in Scania AB.

Footnote: Shockingly this VW monopoly would be accused of price-fixing by 2017 and fined 880 million euros. One wonders if the fine was paid to the same entity that allowed the monopoly. To be fair the scandal also hit cartel partners DaimlerDAFMANIveco and Volvo/Renault.

Polestar 2 BST Edition – Review

Picture Link

A few things matter in a car: speed, handling, and power. But what if you could have all of those things in one vehicle? That’s where the Polestar 2 BST edition 270 comes in. This car is performance-oriented, with a set of upgrades that focus on handling and speed. Each one is hand-assembled to exact specifications, using only the best parts. And because there are only 270 cars available worldwide, you can be sure that you’re getting a truly unique vehicle.

BST Ohlin 2-way Adjustable Dampers Edition

Precision engineering is the name given to the Öhlins 2-way adjustable dampers BST edition. These high-performance dampers are designed for track use and offer a level of refinement that’s simply unmatched. With these dampers, you can fine-tune your car’s handling to perfection. And, since they’re custom-made, you know they will fit your Polster 2 BST edition 270 perfectly. Whether you’re looking for a better grip, more precise steering, or general improvements to your car’s handling, these Öhlins dampers will get the job done.

 

Black Diamond Cut Alloy Wheels

Black Diamond Cut Alloy Wheels are a fashion statement that shows the world you mean business. Not only do they look amazing, but they’re also made with top-of-the-line Pirelli tires for optimal steering response, stability, and road contact. So if you’re looking to make a statement on the open road, look no further than Polster 2 BST edition 270.

Comfort and Safety Upgrades

The exterior of the BST edition 270 features a performance makeover inspired by the Experimental Polestar 2. From the Harman Kardon sound system to the panoramic glass roof, the Polstar 270 edition offers the driving experience through premium comfort and safety. The BST edition 270 will turn heads on the road with a sleek and aggressive new look. And with all the latest safety features, you can rest assured that your family will be safe and sound while enjoying the ride.

Curated Color Finishes

The Polestar 2 BST edition 270 comes in three colors: Snow, Thunder, or Thunder with a satin 3M Battleship Gray wrap. The colors emphasize the car’s purpose in a powerful yet understated way. The matching lower sills and side skirts complete the look and make the car look even more powerful. The grey wrap looks particularly good on the Thunder color, giving it an even more understated look.

Unique styling options

This car means business when you see it with the racing stripe. The matte black finish completes the look and makes it clear that this isn’t your average car – it’s a performance machine ready to take on anything that comes it’s way. The racing stripe underlines the true potential of the BST edition 270, and it comes in matte black or 3M Battleship Gray™ wrap. This signature style feature is a true nod to automotive history and denotes a level of performance exclusive to top-of-the-line vehicles. So, if you’re looking for a stylish and powerful car, look no further than the BST edition 270 with racing stripes.

For those not Familiar with Polestar

Polstar is a Swedish automotive brand established in 1996 and headquartered outside Gothenburg, Sweden, though it’s cars are entirely made in China. Polstar is now an association of Volvo although Polestar shares began trading on the Nasdaq exchange under the symbol PSNY on 24 June 2022, so they are more junior partner than subsidiary.

See our Background Post at this Link…coming soon!

Auto Maker Series: Sweden (9A) Volvo

Introduction to Swedish car maker series.

Polaris

Polestar is a Swedish automotive brand established in 1996 by Volvo Cars partner Flash/Polestar Racing and acquired in July of 2015 by Volvo. The racing team changed its name to Cyan Racing, but maintained good relations with Volvo. Polestar shares began trading on the Nasdaq exchange in June of 2022.

Headquartered in Gothenburg, Sweden, the company origins can be traced back to the foundation of Flash Engineering in 1996. In the 2000s, team was sold and rebranded to Polestar Racing, where they began engineering their own racing Volvos. The brand became the official Volvo partner to modify existing models in 2009, and in 2015 Volvo bought the brand so they could offer enhanced models directly from their resellers.

For a review of the Polestar 2 BST Edition – Review follow this link.

Polestar 2

Polestars first concept car in 2010 was the C30, with its 400 BPH, which they unveiled at the 2010 Gothenburg Motor show. The 2.5L Turbo engine with larger intercooler and KK & K 26 turbo, modified pistons, conrods and inlet camshaft power this beast. Giving it that race car handling Haldex AWD with Quaife mechanical differential brake front and rear, Öhlins shock absorbers and springs with 2.25 ratio steering rack, Brembo 380 mm front brake discs with six piston calipers, Brembo 330 mm rear brake discs with four piston calipers.

The C30’s heir, the Volvo S60 Polestar Concept, pushed the break horse power to 508. This car does 0 to 60 in 4.9 seconds and tops out at 190 MPH. And of course it looks cool.

Volvo

Volvo cars got their start on on April 14, 1927, because that’s when the first Volvo rolled off the assembly line, not when they were incorporated as most car companies typically consider their date of founding. Volvo the company got their start in 1915 as a subsidiary of SKF, a ball bearing manufacturer.

Currently, The Volvo Group, is a Swedish manufacturing corporation headquartered in Gothenburg. It’s  the world’s second-largest manufacturer of heavy-duty trucks, but they also make buses and construction equipment, marine and industrial drive equipment. The name means “I roll” in Latin, which is sort of funny given that Swedish is primarily derived from German.

1999, Volvo Cars sold to the Ford Motor Company and as of 2010 they are owned by the automotive company Geely Holding Group.

The first Volvo car

The idea behind the 1927, Volvo ÖV 4 was to build cars that could withstand Sweden’s rough roads and cold temperatures. Only 280 cars were built that first year. The next year Volvo made their first truck, which quickly became popular in Europe. The cars were not well known outside Sweden until after WWII.

Volvo began trading on the Stockholm Stock Exchange in 1935, and over the next few decades they acquired a few companies, all vehicle makers, which diversified their manufacturing. In the 1970’s they acquired non-manufacturing companies and veered further and further from being a car maker at all.

In 1977 Volvo attempted to merge with SAAB but was rejected. By 1981 auto sales accounted for only a quarter of Volvo revenue so the car portion was spun off into it’s own entity. French car maker Renault had been collaborating with Volvo since 1970, and when Volvo Car became it’s own entity Renault became a minor shareholder, only to sell back that share two years later. The 1990’s brought a deeper partnership between the two companies, sharing testing, development, and safety technology. In 1997 an attempted merger fell through and the two companies parted ways for good.

Volvo Museum in Gothenburg

Also in the 90’s, Volvo joint ventured with Mitsubishi at the former DAF plant in Born, Netherlands. The effort, called NedCar, would produce the first generation Mitsubishi Carisma and the Volvo S40/V40 in 1996. Volvo also dabbled in joint ventures with GM in the 90’s and attempted to merge with major commercial vehicle maker  Scania AB. The latter effort was blocked by the European Union.

Ultimately, Volvo Group sold Volvo Car Corporation to Ford Motor Company for $6.45 billion in January 1999, and went back to focusing on heavy haulers and big commercial vehicles. Ford made good use of the deal with the second generation Land Rover Freelander designed on the same platform as the second generation Volvo S80. The Volvo T5 petrol engine was used in the Ford Focus ST and RS performance models, and Volvo’s satellite navigation system going into select Aston Martins.

Volvo Group dabbled in Mitsubishi Motors, then sold that off a year later to DaimlerChrysler who were making a larger move on the company. Later Volvo Group acquired most of Renault’s heavy industries, including Mac Truck, and Renault continued to acquire shares in Volvo and Volvo group bought shares in Nissan Diesel, a part of the the Renault-Nissan Alliance. Volvo Group took complete ownership of Nissan Diesel in 2007. If this is already confusing, just know it gets worse from there and has little to do with car making.

Volvo cars is currently owned by Geely, a massive Chinese car maker, which we’ll cover in the Automakers Series Part 7.

Lynk & Co

This Chinese-Swedish automobile brand owned by Geely Automobile Holdings was founded in Gothenburg, Sweden in 2016, to target a young professional demographic by exploring internet connectivity and innovative purchasing models.

Lynk & Co 01

Yes it’s owned by the same parent company as Volvo and represents a close partnership. China Euro Vehicle Technology AB or CEVT developed a standard platform for Compact Modular Architecture (CMA) which Volvo uses and Lynk & Co announced three designs on that platform they intend to manufacture. Namely the crossover 01, the 03 sedan, and the 02, a smaller crossover based on the Volvo XC40. The 01 and 03 are already in production in China as of 2017.

Inspired by Tesla, Lynk & Co. sells directly to consumers over the net, though they opened 221 retail outlets in China as of 2019 and are expanding into Europe. In their first full year of sales, 2018, Lynk & Co reported sales of 120,414 vehicles in China.

New Year’s Resolutions for Your Car (Car maintenance)

The New Year is a great start, including your car, to start fresh. Whether you resolve to save money, be more environmentally friendly, or keep your vehicle running smoothly, there are a few easy things you can do to make it happen.

1.  Check and Change Your Oil

One of the most important things you can do to keep your car running smoothly is to change the oil regularly. Over time, oil breaks down and becomes less effective at lubricating the engine and protecting it from wear and tear. That’s why it’s essential to check your oil level regularly and change it when necessary.

Many carmakers recommend changing the oil every 5,000 miles, but it’s a good idea to consult your owner’s manual to see what interval is advisable for your particular model. And if you’re unsure about how to change your oil, you can always take it to a qualified mechanic.

2.  Learn How to Jump-Start a Vehicle

This simple skillset can come in handy if your battery dies on the road. Jump-starting a car is relatively easy and requires only a few tools you probably already have in your garage. All you need is a working vehicle with a good battery, jumper cables, and about 30 minutes. Once you have those items, follow your car’s owner’s manual instructions to jump-start the dead battery.

3.  Check Fluids & Follow the Maintenance Schedule

This may seem like a small thing, but it can make a big difference in the health of your vehicle. Checking the oil level and tire pressure regularly helps to keep your car running smoothly and avoid costly repairs. In addition, following a regular maintenance schedule can help extend your car’s life by keeping it in good condition.

4.  Learn How to Change a Tire

It’s a relatively straightforward process, and it’s something that could come in handy if you ever find yourself stranded on the side of the road. Plus, it’s a great way to show your car some love and keep running smoothly.

Here’s a brief rundown of what you’ll need to do: first, you’ll need to find a safe place to park your car. Once you’ve done that, you’ll need to loosen the lug nuts on your wheel using a wrench. Next, you’ll need to jack up your car and remove the flat tire.

Finally, you’ll need to put the spare tire on and lower the car back down. Once you’ve tightened the lug nuts, you’re good to go.

5.  Become More Eco-Friendly

This means keeping up with regular oil changes, tire rotations, and other scheduled servicing. You can avoid more costly repairs down the road by keeping your car well-maintained. You can also save money by being a smarter driver. Avoiding hard starts and stops, driving the speed limit, and using cruise control can help improve your gas mileage.

New Year’s is a great time to reflect on the past year and set goals for the coming one. For your car, that might mean putting a resolution to keep up with maintenance. This can help prevent expensive repairs down the road and keep your car running smoothly. A few simple steps can make a big difference.