Economy, Auto

Azim Khodro Shows Its First JV Vehicle

Azim Khodro Shows Its First JV VehicleAzim Khodro Shows Its First JV Vehicle

Azim Khodro, a local auto brokerage group, has unveiled one of the biggest Chinese SUVs in the market.

Called Foton Sauvana (not to be confused with the Foton Savanna), the car will be produced by Azim Khodro, making it the firm’s first move beyond vehicle brokerage.

The car was unveiled this week in the Mashhad Motor Show to a warm reception from buyers in the northeastern shrine city.

Babak Vatankhah, the production manager of the firm, said the Chinese giant “will be locally produced by the end of the current fiscal year” (March 2018), local automotive website Khodro Nevis reported.

The company has the capacity to produce 30,000 units per year, half of which will be the Sauvana.

According to Vatankhah, Azim Khodro will offer the car with a turbocharged 2.0-liter, 4-cylinder, 220-hp engine, coming along with a 6-speed automatic and manual transmission.

The car will be priced between 1.35 to 1.6 billion rials ($35,500 to $42,000) based on the options and could be considered as the main rival for Toyota Fortuner, which is already available in the local market.

Azim Khodro purchased a 70% share in Zagros Khodro in July 2016, creating a new joint venture with the automotive company.

Zagros Khodro, which previously produced complete knocked-down kits of Proton models, handed over the remaining service contracts to Azim following the company’s majority buyout.

The older Zagros, which previously produced the Proton Gen-2 and Impian models before sanctions hit Iran in 2011, has suffered from the general slowdown in automotive demand in recent years.

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