Russian carmaker to launch production at former Nissan plant
Russia’s biggest automaker, Avtovaz, will start producing cars at a plant in St. Petersburg previously owned by the Japanese car manufacturer Nissan, the company’s CEO Maxim Sokolov told reporters on Wednesday.
Sokolov noted that the cars will be produced under the Lada brand and that preparations for the launch of production are in the final stages.
“We will not reveal all the details now, they are kept under wraps by the automakers till the last moment, but I can say that these cars will be modern, of high quality and with the highest safety standards… As soon as the memorandums [with our partners] are signed, we will immediately present them to the public,” the company official said.
Earlier reports stated that Avtovaz was planning to restart production at the plant in the second half of 2023.
The Nissan plant in St. Petersburg, which was launched in 2009, has a production capacity of up to 100,000 cars per year. Last year, roughly 43,000 cars came off of its assembly line. The plant mostly produced SUV models such as the Qashqai and X-trail.
The Japanese carmaker suspended operations at the plant in March, citing supply-chain interruptions due to Ukraine-related sanctions imposed on Moscow. Last month, the company decided to sell all of its Russian assets to the state-owned research and development firm NAMI, according to the Russian Trade Ministry. Under the deal, which was concluded for a token sum of €1, Russian carmaker Avtovaz is to carry out maintenance services for Nissan vehicles and supply spare parts for them.
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