Russia loses major assets of European manufacturers who, following the situation with Ukraine, are abandoning their positions in the country.
In a war, there are no winners, everyone loses something, and Russia is seeing how all foreign investment in the automotive sector is leaving the country after months without being able to manufacture a single vehicle in its Russian plants.
The Renault Group was one of the first to make a move, divesting its stake in Lada, Russia’s most popular automotive brand.
Weeks later, the Stellantis group followed suit by shutting down all its brands’ activities in Russia following the difficulties imposed on it to continue its business as usual.
Now it is the turn of Ford and Mercedes-Benz, both of which have decided to abandon all commercial and production activities in Russia after months of doing virtually nothing.
It is difficult to know what will happen in the future, but the closure of these brands in Russia seems definitive and it is unlikely that in the future (at least in the near future) they will return to Russia for fear that something similar will happen again.
Mercedes-Benz dissolves its dealer network, Ford sells its shares for 1 euro
Fewer and fewer car manufacturers and brands have any kind of presence in Russia, as the current situation makes their viability and existence practically impossible.
Mercedes-Benz has opted to completely abandon all commercial activity in Russia, and its entire network of dealerships in the country has been handed over to the local distributor Avtodom.
On the other hand, Ford’s situation in Russia was somewhat more complex, as the American company had a joint venture with Sollers in which the Russians had 51% ownership and Ford owned 49%.
Ford has decided to give 49% of this company to the Russian government, which will pay 1 euro (symbolic value). It is true that Ford in this agreement maintains a buy-back option for the same value of the sale during the next 5 years.
Chinese manufacturers as potential saviours for Russia
In this delicate situation, China could play an important role for the Russian automotive sector, since after the stampede of a large part of European and American manufacturers in the country, the current offer of vehicles is based on what AvtoVAZ offers.
The relationship between China and Russia is good, so the Russian country could facilitate the entry of some Chinese automotive manufacturers into its country as an alternative to the automotive vacuum left by the closure of the world’s main automotive manufacturers.
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