GM sells Saab to Spyker

* GM agrees sale with Dutch firm * Deal completed by February * 'Saab Spyker Autos' created...

GM sells Saab to Spyker

General Motors has agreed to sell Saab to Dutch car maker Spyker.

The deal is expected to be finalised next month, with Spyker creating a new company called Saab Spyker Automobiles.

Saab will cost Spyker $74 million but is subject to the agreement of a 400 million euro loan agreement between Saab and the European Investment Bank ('EIB'), guaranteed by the Swedish Government. Today, the Swedish Government announced approval of this guarantee.

GM still to support Saab
'Throughout the negotiations, GM has always had the hope to find a solution for Saab that would avoid a wind down of the brand,' said GM Europe president Nick Reilly.

'We've worked with many parties over the past year, including governments and investors, and I'm very pleased that we could come to such a good conclusion. Its one that preserves jobs in Sweden and elsewhere.

'GM will continue to support Saab and Spyker on their way forward.'

Victor R. Muller, Spyker's CEO, said: 'We are very much looking forward to being part of the next chapter in Saab's illustrious history. Saab is an iconic brand that we are honoured to shepherd.

'Spyker Cars will provide Saab with the backing required to compete as a competitive global brand along with an entrepreneurial leadership team sensitive to the uniqueness, heritage and individuality of the Saab brand.'

GM put Saab up for sale in January 2009, as the US firm restructured in the face of the financial crisis.

Swedish supercar maker Koenigsegg had pulled out of a deal to buy Saab in November leading to GM announcing that it would start to wind Saab down.

A consortium led by F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone was also interested in buying Saab, but the deal announced today means that GM will cease the winding-down process.