Russia’s Lada Plans New Models After Renault Exit

The head of Russian automaker AvtoVaz said the company would release new models from its Lada brand, following the exit of majority shareholder Renault as a result of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

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According to the company executive Maxim Sokolov, the proposals for the new models would be presented at a board meeting later this month. The company plans to manufacture 500,000 cars per year, largely in its Togliatti factory. Sales rebounded by 75% in August 2022 compared to July. Talking to the Eastern Economic Forum, Sokolov said:

“After the previous shareholders Renault company had left in May, the company stood idle for more than two months … but we managed to set up new production chains and logistics and safeguard the supply of components for production of base models.”

Renault had acquired a majority share in AvtoVaz in the late 2010s, and invested billions to modernize the Togliatti factory. However following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Renault exited the Russian subsidiary this spring and wrote off the value of that investment.

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The French automaker had planned to combine Lada and its low-cost Romanian subsidiary, Dacia. The two brands were supposed to share underpinnings based on Renault-Nissan’s CMF platform, with the goal of producing 1 million vehicles a year on common architecture. But AvtoVaz is yet to reveal if new Lada models would use the new platform or existing ones.

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