According to the Association of European Businesses, sales of new passenger cars and light commercial vehicles in Russia rose by 80% in February to 73,588 units.
Among the top ten-bestselling models of passenger cars so far, nine are produced in Russia.
“Our consensus view on 2011 remains at 2.24 million passenger cars and LCV but in the light of the strong start to the year we will review this following the March and first quarter results,” David Thomas, Chairman of the AEB Automobile Manufacturers Committee, said in a statement.
The Association, or AEB, said it is going to review upwards its current 2011 Russia car sales forecast of 2.24 million units on the “strong start to the year,” after it gets the March sales figures. Russia’s car sales stood at 1.9 million units in 2010, up 30% compared with a year earlier.
AvtoVAZ, 25 percent owned by France’s Renault and producer of Lada models, was the market leader last month with sales of 37,528 units compared to Nissan’s 10,501, Kia’s 10,200 and Renault’s 9,985. Chevrolet was No. 4 with sales of 9,759.
Russia: Car market into high gear
In early February, US giant General Motors said it had signed an agreement with Russia’s GAZ, controlled by oligarch Oleg Deripaska, to assemble the new model Chevrolet Aveo at the Russian group’s factory in Nizhny Novgorod.
Moreover, Sollers will build Fords at Russian plants, helping boost a struggling local industry. Ford will have access to a huge market that could bolster its revenues.
In addition to vehicle production, the Ford Sollers proposed joint venture will produce engines; operate a stamping facility that will provide a higher level of local parts content for Ford vehicles built in Russia; and establish research and development activities.
Russia y-o-y sales up
Car sales in Russia rose by 30 percent last year, according to the Moscow-based Association of European Businesses. Nine of the 10 best-selling models were produced locally, while Ford Focus was in the top five of best-sellers.