TOGLIATTI, December 15. /TASS/. First Lada Xray car rolls off Avtovaz production line on Tuesday, TASS correspondent reports.
"I am sure that this model will be sold not only in Russia but also abroad. It is a difficult time - in 10 months sales in the automotive market in Russia fell by 34%, thus releasing new model is very important so that people will have confidence," Governor of the Samara region Nikolay Merkushin said at the ceremony of the production start.
According to him, investment in this project amounted to about 12 bln rubles ($169.85 mln). Avtovaz was financially supported by state-owned banks, the head of the region said.
"We are not afraid of the crisis in Russia, we are not afraid of prices and we continue to invest in Russia," Renault Senior vice president Jean-Christophe Kugler said.
Plan for production of the new model starting from December 15 is 50 cars per day.
LADA XRay, an urban crossover, is among the three most expected AvtoVAZ’s novelties in the next two years, along with LADA Vesta and LADA XRay Cross. These are going to be "revolutionary products," AvtoVAZ CEO Bo Andresson said.
It is planned to produce about 500 Lada Xray cars in Togliatti by the end of the year. The emphasis will be primarily on the quality of each of the assembled vehicle, rather than the implementation of a quantitative plan for the assembly, the plant’s press-center said.
Domestic sales of Lada Xray are scheduled for February 2016. As Avtovaz said before, this model, together with Lada Vesta, should become a catalyst for change in image of Lada in the Russian market and will help to significantly strengthen the position of the brand in major cities of Russia.
The price model is still unknown. "We have not yet decided on the price, but it is planned to be no less than 600,000 rubles ($8,500)," AvtoVAZ CEO Bo Andresson said in November 2015.
Lada Xray is the second major premiere of Avtovaz this year after Lada Vesta, which started production at the plant IzhAvto less than 3 months ago - on September 25. Avtovaz invested around 30 bln rubles ($424.96 mln) in the production of its new cars.