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SAMARA, April 4 (Itar-Tass) — AVTOVAZ on Wednesday starts up the serial production of a new vehicle model, the Lada Largus. An AVTOVAZ official has said the Lada Largus is the first large-scale joint project of AVTOVAZ and the Renault-Nissan alliance.
The vehicle is intended to fill the currently vacant niche of economy-class utility vehicles with an increased carrying capacity. The vehicle will be made in three modifications: a five-seater, a seven-seater, and a freight-carrying minivan. The scope of Lada Largus production in 2012 is estimated to be approximately 30,000 vehicles. Prices of the Lada Largus have not been disclosed so far. However, earlier a price of 340,000 roubles was mentioned as a minimum one. The new vehicle is to go on sale in summer this year.
Artyom Fedosov, AVTOVAZ vice-president for sales and marketing, told Itar-Tass earlier that the Lada Largus was expected to be quite in demand among customers and that the planned volume of production in 2012 would turn out to be lesser than the forecast one. "This vehicle model will have no competitors in its price niche," Fedosov emphasized.
AVTOVAZ is one of major automakers in Europe. AVTOVAZ production capacities currently make it possible to turn out about 800,000 vehicles and components a year. Since 1970 AVTOVAZ has made more than 26 million Lada automobiles.
AVTOVAZ is an equal participant in the Renault-Nissan alliance. The major stockholders of AVTOVAZ are the Rostekhonologii state corporation (28.98 percent of shares), the French Renault (25 percent plus one share -- a blocking stake) and Troika-Dialog (20.14 percent of shares). Renault is planning to enlarge its stake in the company up to the controlling interst soon.