AvtoTor Adds Capacity for 50,000 Chevrolets for Russia

• New CKD line at Kaliningrad plant
• GM Number One foreign car-maker in Russia with 11% market share

 

Moscow.  General Motors' long-standing Russian partner, AvtoTor, opened a new facility in Kaliningrad today. The new complex will be able to build up to 50,000 Chevrolet Lacetti compact cars. The vehicles will be assembled from CKD kits (completely knocked down) supplied by GM's South Korean engineering and manufacturing unit, GM DAT. They will be sold exclusively in Russia, where Chevrolet is the number one non-domestic brand and the Lacetti is Chevrolet's best-selling model.

"For AvtoTor, the start of CKD production of the Chevrolet Lacetti crowns 5 years of in-depth cooperation with General Motors," said Vladimir Scherbakov, Chairman of AvtoTor. "We are well prepared to build the Lacetti to the high standards of quality Russian consumers expect from a Chevrolet."

"Following the start-up of our new St. Petersburg plant earlier this month, the opening of this new line at AvtoTor is further proof of our continued commitment to Russia," said Chris Gubbey, President of General Motors Russia. "Russia could well be the biggest car market for GM in Europe as early as 2009. We are the leading non-Russian car-maker. That's a position we aim to keep."

GM grew sales in Russia by 44% in Jan-Sept 2008, outpacing industry growth of 23% and reaching a record total of 256,765. GM's market share has reached a new high of 10.9% in Russia from 6.5% as recently as 2006. In the first nine months of the year, Chevrolet maintained its position as Russia's favorite non-domestic brand with sales up 33.5% (or 44,000 cars and SUVs) to a total of 175,800.

General Motors' success in Russia has been built on a broad customer offer of five brands serving every segment of the market. Since 2004, AvtoTor, has assembled a total of more than 130,000 Cadillac, Hummer and Chevrolet cars and SUVs to support that sales strategy. The new CKD assembly line at AvtoTor's Kaliningrad plant will build the Chevrolet Lacetti, the brand's best-selling model in Russia. This year alone Chevrolet has sold over 60,000 Lacettis in Russia, accounting for 34 percent of Chevrolet's total sales. 

General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM), the world's largest automaker, has been the annual global industry sales leader for 77 years. Founded in 1908, GM today employs about 266,000 people around the world. With global headquarters in Detroit, GM manufactures its cars and trucks in 35 countries. In 2007, nearly 9.37 million GM cars and trucks were sold globally under the following brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, Hummer, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn, Vauxhall and Wuling. In Europe, GM sells its vehicles in over 40 markets. It operates 10 vehicle-production and assembly facilities in seven countries and employs around 55,500 people. More information on GM can be found at http://media.gmeurope.com and http://www.gmeurope.com. GM Europe executive blog at http://drivingconversations.com/.

Contacts:

Marc Kempe

GM Central and Eastern Europe

marc.kempe@gm.com

Office: +36-23-446-270

Mobile: +36-70-457-6139

Hanspeter Ryser

Chevrolet Europe

hanspeter.ryser@gm.com

Office: +41 44 828 2980 

Mobile: +41 79 404 9173

Andreas Kroemer

GM Europe Corporate Communications

andreas.kroemer@gm.com

Office: +49 6142 7 77340

Mobile: +49 170 339 6733

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