Russia wants to revive Soviet-era cars.
Russia received an embargo and was then abandoned by many of the world’s automotive manufacturers due to the military attack carried out on Ukraine. Now that there is a shortage of car stocks, the Moscow government plans to revive old car brands that had appeared in the Soviet Union era.
Quoted to CNN International, one of the most recent strategies carried out by Russia to meet the demand for cars in its country is to try to revive opposing vehicles that were produced during the Soviet Union era.
The car that will be revived from the dead is the Moskvich. The plan to restore Moskvich emerged after Renault decided to leave Russia some time ago.
Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin plans to nationalize the Renault used car factory in Moscow to be used to assemble the Moskvich.
According to Sobyanin, reviving the Moskvich brand is one way for Russia to have vehicles because global automotive manufacturers have now stopped producing and delivering cars to Russia.
“Foreign owners have decided to close the Renault factory in Moscow. Owners have the right to do this, but we cannot allow thousands of workers to be left without jobs. In 2022, we will open a new page in the history of Moskvich,” Sobyanin said.
Moskvich is arguably a foreign name in the European automotive world, even though the brand has been around since 1930.
Moskvich itself means “native of Moscow.” This car was produced in the Soviet Union and was designed to be a powerful and affordable passenger car with parts made in Russia and East Germany at the time.
But the car can get a lot of negative feedback from the market. The quality is considered very low.
Malkovich 408 production in the 1960s, for example. This 50-horsepower car was even criticized directly by Soviet officials for its poor production quality. Excerpted from the book Cars for Comrades by Lewis Siegelbaum, the car was dubbed the ‘bad car.’
After the Soviet Union collapsed, car manufacturers were privatized and declared bankrupt in 1991.
According to the analysis agency Autostat, there are currently nearly 200,000 Moskvich cars still registered in Russia, including 46,000 vehicles over 35 years old.
Furthermore, Sobyanin said that Moskvich tried to use all permanent factory employees. The plant will also get most auto parts from several Russian companies.
Interestingly, Sobyanin claims that they will not only produce internal combustion cars (ICE). It was announced that Moskvich would also assemble an electric vehicle.
But in an official statement, Kamaz said that although he supported the decision of the mayor of Moscow, the issue of technological cooperation was still under discussion. Later, both parties will make an official statement after the problem has been resolved.