MOSCOW, Russia, April 1, 2014 — Ford Sollers remains absolutely committed to the Russian market and is confident it has the right product plan, people and assets to deliver long-term profitable growth. The joint venture, however, must respond decisively to the current business conditions, including sizing production to the current demand and reducing costs.
The rapid and significant depreciation of the ruble, falling industry sales, and a consumer shift away fr om
Ford Sollers still expects Russia to become Europe’s largest auto market in the longer term and is moving quickly to expand its lineup. Since the joint venture started operations in late 2011, Ford Sollers has grown from building two vehicles in Russia to nine vehicles today. The launch of Explorer and Kuga in Elabuga helped Ford Sollers expand in the fast-growing SUV segment, with sales of these vehicles increasing by 172 percent in 2013.
This year, Ford Sollers plans to build and launch the EcoSport small SUV and the new Transit two-tonne commercial vehicle, and is on-track to start production at a refurbished assembly plant in Naberezhnie Chelny in Tartarstan. The new Focus and all-new Mondeo go into production in St. Petersburg in 2015.