ST. PETERSBURG (Sputnik) — The new Focus has been adapted for the Russian market with some unique features, including extra sound insulation and higher ground clearance, Ford Sollers President and CEO Ted Cannis said at the opening ceremony.
Acting Leningrad Regional Governor Alexander Drozdenko said the Ford Focus ranked among the most popular cars in Russia.
“Ford has always been known for reliability and a good price-performance ratio. I was quite happy with what I saw today, and it surprised me. This model features some innovations that make it superior to other vehicles. And this is one reason Ford is able to hold onto its market share; it offers more advanced options,” Drozdenko noted at the ceremony.
The company plans to continue investing in its Russian production facilities, Cannis said. We are proud of investing in this plant; we’ll continue to invest in any production assets in Russia, and our actions confirm this, he said.
The plant was overhauled prior to the startup of the new Mondeo and Focus in 2015. New equipment and additional automated systems were installed, and the paint shop was also upgraded. Russia started assembling the Focus in 2002, after over 700,000 had been sold here.
The Ford Sollers plant in Vsevolozhsk was built in 2002. Currently, it assembles the Focus and Mondeo. The 26-hectare plant includes warehouses, a parking lot for newly built cars, welding, paint and assembly shops, a 4-poster test rig that checks new cars for noise, squeaks and rattles, as well as a test track.
The Ford Sollers joint venture manufactures Ford vehicles in Russia and imports and sells Ford products, including cars, parts and components on the Russian market. The joint venture operates production facilities in Vsevolozhsk, in the Leningrad Region, in Naberezhnye Chelny and the Alabuga special economic zone in the Republic of Tatarstan.