Full-cycle production of Sollers Argo compact light-duty trucks has been launched at a new facility, SOLLERS Cargo. Production was given a starting boost by the Russian Federation Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov, Ulyanovsk Region Governor Aleksey Russkikh, and SOLLERS PJSC Board of Directors Chairman Adil Shirinov.
The production launch was broadcast online at the COMTRANS 2023 international commercial vehicle exhibition.
The new plant includes a cab welding line equipped with state-of-the-art equipment and a vehicle assembly shop, while cab painting is performed at the Ulyanovsk Automobile Plant painting facility. The new enterprise was created in less than one year at the UAZ industrial site in line with the concept of creating a multibrand centre in the UAZ industrial park to produce frame commercial vehicles.
The production project for Sollers Argo light-duty trucks further envisions implementing a large-scale localisation programme, including presswork, installing diesel engines and transmissions, producing parts for chassis, interior and exterior, and Russian manufacturing of electronics.
‘Sollers Argo has a great future given the growth of short-haul transportation, especially in urban agglomerations. Without doubt, the company’s plan to bring annual production to 10,000 vehicles in the next three years will be fulfilled. Accordingly, production at the SOLLERS Ulyanovsk site will increase by 50%. Also contributing to this will be the continued recovery of the auto market as a whole, including the commercial vehicles segment. The government, for their part, will increase their support of demand. By the end of this year, we will increase funding of the preferential leasing programme by RUB 7.8 bln. This will allow for additional sale of about 15,000 cars, including electric vehicles. Buyers will be able to take advantage of this programme literally from tomorrow,’ said Russian Federation Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov.
‘Today, we are launching a unique project, following the creation, in an unprecedentedly brief period of time, of new state-of-the-art full-cycle production facilities, and launching a product that has no equivalents on the Russian market,’ SOLLERS PJSC Board of Directors Chairman Adil Shirinov said. ‘Our ambitions are to continue moving forward just as fast, in order to make Sollers Argo a fully domestically made product, to bring new models with electric propulsion to the market, and to offer affordable and high-class solutions for intracity logistics to our customers,’ Adil Shirinov remarked.
Aleksey Russkikh noted that Ulyanovsk Region has a historically highly developed automobile industry. There is a very strong industrial cluster producing automotive components, as well as the very best specialists in carmaking. The region boasts solid economic and production potential. ‘The launch of Sollers Argo light-duty truck production at the UAZ industrial site is a new stage of cooperation between SOLLERS Group and the region, of which UAZ is a key asset. Sollers Argo is what the Russian market really needs. The enterprise will give the region more than 350 jobs and RUB 1 bln of additional investment in the regional economy. The launch of the new production facility will make a significant contribution to the development of the region’s economy, increase gross regional product, and create new high-paying jobs. With more revenues coming to the regional budget, it will be possible to implement more social programmes. This is also a new round of cooperation with UAZ, part of the long-term operations in which we are interested. We will continue supporting the new enterprise,’ the governor emphasised.
Sollers Argo is a compact truck for urban transportation and has a number of modifications for any cargo delivery tasks. Its GVW is from 2.5 tonnes, while payload is less than 1 tonne. It is equipped with an environmentally friendly Euro-5 compliant engine and is therefore allowed into the centres of large cities. Excellent maneuverability and minimal turning radius allow the Argo to deliver goods in a very dense built-up environment.
The vehicle is equipped with an economical and reliable 2.0-litre diesel engine with a capacity of 130 hp at 3,600 rpm and torque of 285 Nm at 2,200-2,600 rpm. The Argo is equipped with all necessary active and passive safety systems, including driver and passenger airbags, ABS, ASR, ESP, etc.
In line with planned output for this model, the enterprise is expected to reach annual production of over 10,000 vehicles in the next five years. Total investment in the project is over RUB 1 bln.