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The new car used the same platform as the Opel Vectra and polarized Saab aficionados, but thanks to its sales, the company declared a profit in 1995 for the first time in seven years.
In 2000, GM purchased the remaining shares of Saab, making the company a wholly-owned subsidiary.
The Saab brand overall has not been a money-maker for GM, with total losses 1990-2005 exceeding US billion, showing black digits only two of these years.
The losses are all the more daunting because Saab, in 2005, posted record unit sales in Europe, its core market.
On December 1989 General Motors announced it had bought 50% of Saab on that year for US 0 million with an option to acquire the remaining shares within a decade.
Despite this, losses continued and the Malmö plant was closed in 1991. GM's involvement spurred the launch of the "new generation" Saab 900 in 1994.
Notably, the car’s drag coefficient of 0.30 was the lowest of any production car at the time.
This criticism reached a fever-pitch with the introduction of the Subaru-derived 9-2X (derisively called the "Saabaru" by American critics) and the Chevrolet-derived 9-7X SUV.
These losses led GM's most vocal investor, Kirk Kerkorian's Tracinda Corporation, to renew its call for GM to cut its losses and dump the Swedish brand.
However, there did not seem to be any parties interested in acquiring the brand. Kerkorian reversed his position and now is a supporter of the Saab brand (he had also voiced criticism of GM's Hummer brand).
The Saab 9-2X, a rebadged Subaru Impreza that was manufactured in Japan, was discontinued after the 2006 model year.
A new crossover SUV, dubbed the 9-4X, will share a platform with the new Cadillac BRX and is expected to go on sale in 2010. In 1990 GM purchased half of Saab (and bought the other half ten years later) in what is now seen as an impulse buy.