It almost didn't make it to fruition but Saab has officially begun production of its long-delayed 9-4X.

After a lengthy wait, the Saab 9-4X crossover has officially begun production at General Motors' Ramos Arizpe plant in Mexico. The 9-4X was originally scheduled to be on the market over a year ago, but financial trouble at GM delayed the project several months.

The first 9-4X model to roll of the production line was an Ice Pearl metallic Aero model with a 2.8L turbocharged V6. Chassis number 00001 is currently on its way to a media drive in the United States, but will eventually be shipped to Sweden for display at the Saab car museum.

"This is a great day for Saab," Saab Automobile President & CEO Jan ...ke Jonsson said. "The arrival of the 9-4X is another important step in the fulfillment of our business plan. This sporty and distinctive product will significantly broaden the appeal of our brand and give us access to an important new vehicle segment that is still growing, particularly in the United States."

The Saab 9-4X officially goes on sale in the U.S. this May, followed by European sales in August. UK sales are slated to begin later this year.