Spyker – parent to Saab Automobile – has announced a net loss of EUR218m in 2010.

The big loss was not unexpected in a year of transition for Saab as it left GM and became independent under Spyker. Spyker makes around 50 luxury sports cars a year, so the group’s results are heavily skewed by its much bigger Saab unit.

Last month Spyker said it planned to sell its original sports cars business, change its name and focus on expanding Saab.

Saab sold 31,696 cars last year, 15% up on 2009 and aims to make 80,000 this year, helped by the new 9-5 model. It is hoped to take Saab back to profit in 2012.

Victor R. Muller, CEO of the Group and Chairman of Saab Automobile, said: “In 2010, Saab firmly established itself as an independent car manufacturer. The company made significant progress since we acquired the business. We have forged important strategic relationships and established a Saab-controlled global sales organisation, laying the foundation for an independent and profitable global premium auto brand. The achievements in 2010 reflect the tremendous tenacity shown by all our employees and dealers in what has been an incredibly eventful year for Saab. Last year we started to crawl, this year we learn to walk and as of next year, we will be up and running.”

“Saab has made much progress in the past year, in what I would like to describe as the first of our build-up years. 2011 will be another build-up year, before we will see the result of our hard work by achieving profitability in 2012.” said Jan Åke Jonsson, President & CEO of Saab.

“We are confident that the strong sales momentum as witnessed in the third and fourth quarter of 2010 will continue to build throughout 2011, as Saab continues to strengthen its product portfolio. We are on track with our product development and this year, we will bring four new products to the market, including the Saab 9-4X as from May 2011, which gives Saab Automobile access to the growing cross-over segment, and the much-awaited Saab 9-5 SportCombi. In addition, we will launch the successor to the current Saab 9-3 in 2012, so that in 2 years from now all Saab models will be younger than 2 years.”