The Swedish government has said a last-gasp bid by Spyker Cars for Saab offered a thread of hope that the brand would survive, but promised millions in aid to workers should there be no deal by Monday's 10pmGMT deadline.

"We hope, naturally, that even if it is a very, very slim thread of hope, there is a chance of finding some kind of solution to the question of Saab," Swedish enterprise minister Maud Olofsson told a news conference.

"It is very late, there is a very tight timetable and that means the situation is very difficult," she said after meeting with representatives of Saab and local authorities.

Reuters reported that the Swedish government had said it would allot SKR542m (US$75m) to measures, mainly for education and job schemes, to help deal with the thousands of jobs set to disappear if Saab is shut down.

Abandoning the 60-year-old Swedish auto brand would eliminate 3,400 jobs in Sweden and hit 1,100 Saab dealers.

"We should be careful about fuelling new hopes in a situation where the people in Trollhattan, and at Saab and their subcontractors are thrown between hope and despair," Swedish prime minister Fredrik Reinfeldt told journalists.

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