AvtoVAZ Doors Open Day: new LADA Granta shows 'X-Face'
Walking along the conveyor allowed in Togliatti
AvtoVAZ again opened the doors to all comers – Doors Open Day of the enterprise took place in Togliatti on August 25. The event, which has already become a tradition, has become a hallmark of both the plant and the city over several years. Not only Togliatti citizens, but also residents from all over the region and the surrounding regions, come to this event. Like last year, the guests visited the assembly line, tested cars and saw the presentation of the new car. Read the details in the report of Realnoe Vremya.
Granta with new face
Like last year, the guests of AvtoVAZ Doors Open Day visited the real presentation of the new car, usually inaccessible to a wide audience. On the site in front of the administrative building there was organized a stage, where the renovated Lada Granta was presented.
The car family Granta is available since 2011 and, until recently, included the version with sedan and liftback (which is produced in Izhevsk). In the first seven months of this year, this model was the second most popular among VAZ cars, second only to Vesta. In the rating of the most popular models in Russia, LADA Granta, along with Vesta (and Largus), is included in the top 10.
To reinforce these results, AvtoVAZ decided to modernize the model, at the same time giving it a higher status — at the front, the new model is similar to Vesta. As Chief Designer of AvtoVAZ Lada Steve Mattin told, they tried to make the car visually larger. ''When we were developing the new model, it was important to preserve the brand design and its recognition. Lada Vesta is the new language of brand design. To Granta, we tried to make the familiar ''x-face''. Now we have Vesta and as if its younger brother — Granta,'' Mattin told. He noted that the car has changed not only externally but also internally: the car has a new combination of devices and ''fresh interior solutions''. As for the technical characteristics, they have not been disclosed yet. The price is also still undisclosed. But now we can say that the model will have two new body styles — hatchback and station wagon, which became available due to the abolition of the brand Kalina.
President of AvtoVAZ PJSC Yves Caracatzanis believes that the new ''face'' will allow Granta to strengthen its position in the market and to find new fans who would prefer the model of a higher class.
Let us remind that Frenchman Yves Caracatzanis became President of the Volga automobile plant in early June of this year, replacing his compatriot, Nicolas More. According to Caracatzanis, he intends to ''continue to strengthen the position of the enterprise''. He noted that today AvtoVAZ occupies 20% of the Russian market — a record figure for the last 7 years.
Granta will not remain the only novelty of this year. XRAY in the Cross version will be demonstrated at the Moscow international motor show, and the selling of Vesta sedan also with the prefix Cross has begun recently.
From welding to full assembly
On Doors Open Day, almost everyone had the opportunity to observe the cycle of assembly of Togliatti cars. Let us remind that on the Assembly line in Togliatti they assemble a number of French cars Renault (Logan and Sandero), as well as models under the Japanese brand Datsun.
The only obstacle on the way to the tour was a queue of hundreds of people who wanted to watch the assembly of cars.
During the tour, the engine assembly shops, bodies welding were demonstrated, as well as the guests were allowed to the part of the conveyor where the engine is installed in the car and parts of the suspension and interior are assembled. It was possible to get acquainted with the production itself, as well as to see the working clothes of the staff, the places of rest of the employees. During the tour, the production continues as usual, so the work of employees can be seen literally in their natural environment — from work operations to rest.
A circle around the polygon
After seeing how the cars are assembled, the guests of the event could immediately test them. At the site of the plant there was organized a test drive, where it was offered to test Vesta in all possible versions, XRAY, as well as Lada Largus. It was allowed to drive only one circle, but drive several cars.
This allowed to compare the cars, to rate their controllability and dynamic properties. For example, it could be seen that Vesta is far superior to XRAY similar to it in appearance in almost all respects. Largus surprised, which with all its utility and ease of management turned out to be even more comfortable than XRAY.
Unfortunately, the new Granta and Lada 4x4 were not available for test. There were quite many willing to test the latter, but they just had to listen to the experiences of those who experienced this model in the past year.