61 One of the Largest European Automobile Plants

One of the Largest European Automobile Plants

Posted on October 12, 2012 by team

AutoVAZ is one of the largest automobile plants in Europe, its facilities let produce up to 800 thousand cars and car kits a year. The plant appeared in 1996, the history of the Russian brand LADA started from there.

All cars of the plant meet the international standards. About 67 thousand people work at the plant. In the end of this year they plan to start production of NISSAN ALMERA and two models of RENAULT.

Looking out from the 24th floor of the main building of AutoVAZ.

The plant is really huge. It occupies 600 hectares. Its shops have dozens of thousands of equipment units. Its total conveyor line is 300 km (186 miles) long, the main conveyor length is 1,5 km (0,93 miles).

All these cars belong to the plant employees.

This TPP belongs to the company too.

These cars are for sale and they are sold well.

Here they test cars.

These are some views of Togliatti.

Here press production takes place.

In these huge shops they turn steel sheets into car bodies.

They use modern “KOMATSU” equipment. The daily capacity of the line is 1130 details.

High-speed automatic line KOMATSU consists of five press machines and is intended for making large parts of cars.

Roofs quality is being checked.

Ready parts are sent to the warehouse.

It’s the welding shop where they make bodies.

The employees call this shop producing LADA KALINA “the garden of robots”. Rather poetically.

The details for the future bodies are waiting for their turn.

More than 350 welding robots are used in the shop.

It already resembles a body.

More details are welded on.

Welding lines are adjusted according to mathematic models.

Robots of two types are working here: welders and transporters.

They strictly control the geometry of the body construction.

However they use manual welding too.

This production line is called Bo. (B zero). It’s a large scale project realized together with Renault-Nissan. Here they make 350 thousand cars a year.

Now they make LADA-Largus here (five- and seven-seaters). Their price is 11 500 – 15 000 USD depending on the optional equipment.

The banner says: “Making the production better you make better yourself”.

100 Larguses are born daily.

“Nissan” and “Renault” will be made here soon too.

These are the silencers for Larguses.

And it’s the chassis.

It must be a nice car for a big family.

Here they make cars called “SAMARA”.

The equipment in this shop is not so new but it’s going to be replaced.

Here they install glass on Larguses.

The bampers are being installed.

The lights wait for their turn.

Now the car has wheels.

The banner says: “If you are sure of yourself, you are sure of your future.”

The Largus is almost ready.

It should pass the checkpoint.

The sign says” If you did the job, check its quality”.

Someone has left the local paper on the table.

The board shows information for the employees.

Many young people work in the shop.

Next year KALINAs will be renovated, both from inside and outside.

Here the cars get oil and fuel.

Drivers come to check their cars.

This is a “Cars testing area”.

The final examination takes place here.

The sign writes it’s the “final delivery point”.

It’s the monument to the first director fo AutoVAZ.

The main building of AutoVAZ.

By the way, some people say that LADA Largus is too similar to the Romanian DACIA MCV 2007…

Location: Togliatti, the Samara region

via chronograph

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61 Responses to “One of the Largest European Automobile Plants”

  1. Richard S. says:

    How resistant are they to rust?

    • Steamed McQueen says:

      Didn’t you know? They come from the factory with pre-installed rust!

    • A-Star says:

      Modern Ladas (Kalina, Granta, Largus) shown above are quite resistant to rust. They are zinc-coated and well painted.

      • CZenda says:

        Dacia Logan is very prone to rust, especially at the rear arches. Zinc coated? There is zinc coating and “zinc coating”. E.g. Fords are zinc coated, but so thinly that it does not prevent them from turning to rust buckets very soon.

    • Tiger says:

      Look at the price. Those cars are marketed usually for a price around 10,000USD, so after lets say 150,000km or ten years these cars are usually junk. But hey, that goes for most other and more expensive cars as well. Very few cars today can expect to live much longer.

      • America says:

        Perhaps the crap you are used to driving only lasts 93k miles. Here crappy Ford 4.6L V8s go 250K, miles that is. At 100K they still purr like new.

        • Tiger says:

          Yes, and for the money I need to spend on refueling a 4.6L V8 in order to drive 250,000 miles I could get a real car. Sorry, but that is just not a valid argument.

  2. CZenda says:

    AFAIK Lada Largus is,indeed, a brand-engineered Dacia MCV.
    I believe Renault sucks even more than Sh**roen”. Bad move.

    • A-Star says:

      Yes, Lada Largus is actually Dacia Logan MCV. Dacia Logan MCV is based on Nissan B0 patform. Dachia is a subsidiary of the Renault. So, Is Lada Largus in fact Renault or Nissan?

      • Tiger says:

        Dacia is a division of Renualt-Nissan. Lada is building it under license and with a different badge. Still better than going out of business. They need to improve on operations and product development before they start launching their own genuinly new cars. But hey, Chrysler is today owned by Fiat, so it could have been much worse.

        • America says:

          lol, i thought you guys loved your crappy knock off under license Fiats, err excuse me, “lada”s…

          And please being owned by French Renault is really worse then Italian Fiat? LMAO talk about a choice of the lesser of two evils.

          • Tiger says:

            Renault-Nissan actually makes better cars and better engines in the mass-segment. The only good thing about Fiat is its sports car division that consist of Ferrari and Maserati. But this has nothing to do with the mass-segment we are talking about. It like comparing a Casio or Swatch with a Rolex or Patek-Philippe or Nike Sneakers with a pair of hand-made John Lobb Oxfords. I hope you see the difference. BTW, Renault engines are also the basis for many other engines in the market, especially for premium diesel engines powering Land Rovers, BMWs and the like.

  3. Fred Johnson says:

    At least they don’t dress like they’re heading to the beach like they do in the USA auto plants. God, what slobs they are. The unions have ruined just about every business in the US. Gee…. wonder where THAT failed idea came from?

    • America says:

      I wonder what plants you are whining about? There are plenty of non union auto plants in the U.S. and the workers don’t look anything like that. Sounds like you are generalizing.

    • Tiger says:

      In Germany almost every plant across the country is heavily unionized, but the unions here are more realistic than they were in the US or UK. They do not expect huge wage increases and they do not expect the firm to handle their pensions. And they do cooperate with the management to keep the plant competitive in order to keep their jobs.

  4. America says:

    So is the Renault-Nissan alliance now the majority stakeholder in AutoVAZ? How well have they recovered from the world economic crisis? I seem to recall the government bailing them out around 2008-09 as they got hit hard by the economic downturn.

    I can only imagine what Soviet central planners would have thought about mass producing cars for the people on this scale. They certainly didn’t plan for any parking back then. Mass ownership of cars is something they didn’t seem to think was going to happen for many decades if ever. They certainly didn’t plan for it.

    • roofius says:

      bla bla bla lies lies lies

      • America says:

        lol, lies? Renault-Nissan are major stakeholders in AutoVAZ. I was just wondering how much it is these days. I seem to recall something about them raising it to a slight majority shareholder position recently.

        And parking, remind me where all the Soviet era planned parking is? They clearly intended Russia’s urban areas to be centered around the concept of public transportation, not automobile ownership. It’s pretty obviously. Just look at any Soviet era planned urban area. The idea of owning your own car was a selfish capitalist extravagance to their thinking.

    • Tiger says:

      America is right here. The commies did not want everybody to have car. Especially in Russia. They were driving their own “capitalist” luxury cars with imported fuel from Finland.

    • Babysitter says:

      Car production in late USSR was actually higher than now. Cars were mass produced and mass ownership of cars actually was one of goals of late Soviet leaders.
      Not sayin’ that communism is any good but fact is fact.

      • Tiger says:

        And less people had cars. The rest was given away for nonsense barter business with the “brotherly” nations. No, sorry, again nothing good about a system that in 1955 aborted 5.5 million children.

        • America says:

          Hey there were still 2 million live births that year…wonder what they did with the rest of them? Fertilizer for the collectives? *shrug*

          • Tiger says:

            Communism was a murderous regime of lunatics. There is nothing to be said about it more. If there would not have been communism we would have a much more healthier Russia and a much more competitive Russian industry today.

      • America says:

        And they failed miserable at it. Even today Russia is a huge automotive growth market. today it’s something like less then 200 Russians in every 1000 own a car. IN the US it’s more like 800+ per thousand, 600+ per thousand in Germany etc.

        • Tiger says:

          Yes indeed, but the trend is very positive. Today Russia is Europe´s largest market for brand new cars and still the most resilient one since it is not so much affected by the Euro-crisis.

  5. yagur says:

    Are those cars ??? Looks like wood for the fireplace…

  6. whistleblower says:

    cars are only german and japans, other else are s*it

    • America says:

      And what about all the “German” and “Japanese” cars that are built in factories outside of Germany and Japan? lol, are they sh_t too?

      • Tiger says:

        No, because there you have a German or Japanese supervisor who whips some a$$e$. Japanese and German companies are much more advanced than Italian, American or French OEMs, especially in the mass segment. Of course, when it comes to super and luxury cars the Italians and the British do have something to offer, although Lamborghini and Bentley belong to the Volkswagen Group. But the American OEMs are just so backward. Maybe Ford can survive, but GM will surely go down the drain in the next ten years. Their whole powertrain technology is just sooo backward. Maybe they will have to assemble Logans in the near future too.

        • America says:

          Whatever you think of it’s styling the Corvette is a world class supercar at a relatively bargain price. The rest of GM, meh not so much. But the Vette is an insane technological tour de force. It can hold its own and often smoke anything else in it’s price range, and even much more expensive sport coupes.

          And there is no maybe about Ford surviving, they are “healthy as a horse”. They actually turned a profit these last 3+ years which is more then most auto manufactures can say nowadays.

          • Tiger says:

            The new Corvette could have been a good and fairly affordable sports car, I agree. But when you look at the design or even the interior…sorry, for the same money I would buy a 1-3 year old Jag XK or XKR in good condition with more comfort and better looks, if I want something that is not German. There is just too much plastic in American cars.

  7. DreamsKeeper says:

    Lada Largus it’s a Dacia Logan MCV. Search new Dacia.

  8. Unknown says:

    What’s a TPP?

  9. alessio says:

    Long lives the niva (off road fiat 127 ;-) )

    never take the niva out of production, it is a marble!

    • Tiger says:

      Actually there is indeed a huge market for compact and off-road capable SUVs. Maybe they can give the Niva the deserved update?

  10. alessio says:

    the newer one = dacia logan

  11. Daniel says:

    Instead of taking orders from Party bureaucrats, you now take orders from corporate headquarters. That’s better, Huh?

    • Tiger says:

      It is not really better since you are still taking orders and still have to haul your a$$ to work, but yes at the end of the day it is better. You can actually buy things for your money, now more Lada employees actually can afford cars, holidays, new furniture, meat, have a better healthcare and do get a better training. So pretty much, it is better by lightyears than being a slave to some commie bureaucrat who secretly adores the western consumerism.

  12. Ocktavian says:

    Hello, well actually LADA Largus is more or less actually a DACIA MCV. Dacia is owned by Renault but it’s a romanian car manufacturer. Dacia models are sold in the world also as Renault or Nissan models and/or in cooperation with other car manufacturers (Mahindra – India, Pars Khodro – Iran).

  13. Tovarich Volk says:

    It’s nice to see a Russian automotive factory that isn’t abondoned and decaying. Also, I didn’t realise that the old style Lada Niva was still made.

    • America says:

      “It’s nice to see a Russian automotive factory that isn’t abondoned and decaying.”

      Give it a few more years under Renault. ;)

      • Tiger says:

        Yes, unlike the thriving and innovative American car industry. Nota bene Murica: when it comes to the use of emission reducing and performance enhancing turbo chargers I do have some figures for You:
        Europe: 80% of all engines turbocharged
        Asia: 20% of all engines turbocharged
        US: 10% of all engines turbocharged
        So much for “innovation” and “modern standards”.
        Drive safely!

  14. Otis R. Needleman says:

    I always enjoy stories about factories producing things. Thanks much!

  15. MAC says:

    I wonder if they are part of Unions?

  16. Steamed McQueen says:

    Seriously? The Samara is STILL in production? Have they figured out how to make it to where one can turn the heater COMPLETELY off yet? How about the electrics? Most Samaras had an electrical system that made Lucas look like Tesla. Step on the brakes and the dome light comes on. Activate the turn signal and the wipers come on. Turn on the headlights and the radio quits.

    And they still haven’t figured out how to make an automatic transmission, despite building the same car for the past 40 years.

    Good to see the tough-as-nails Niva is still around though!

  17. SSSR says:

    I wonder if there are any aftermarket parts for those cars like head lights and tail lights and cooler grills ect….

  18. andrei says:

    I LOVE Nivas :D

  19. rekneteprdel says:

    Automobile plant? I thought it should produce CARS in the first place. Not re-branded Romanian donkey waggons or Ladas.

    • Tiger says:

      Actually a Lada or a Dacia is not much worse than a todays Chevrolet to be honest. The same low performing engines, the same leaf spring suspension and the same cheap plastics in the interior. Only that the Ladas and Dacias are cheaper than the average Chevrolets.

  20. notgiven says:

    I always enjoy reading a flamewar about Dacia Logan. It simply makes me laugh when all the “experts” start to talk about how Renault is worse than anything else in the world, how all cars except [insert one] will rust away in 10 years and how they are are nightmare to drive.

    In reality, most of these nolifers have absolutely no experience with any Renault/Dacia/Lada and they are living in a dream world and belive marketing myths that migh have been true in the 1960-s and 70-ies.

    Especially funny are posts where someone actually believes that a german or japanese car built in [a third world country] is much better than Renaul built in [the same third world country], because there is some mystical “supervisor” who will personally beat any lazy workers and will take responsibility for quality. It aint gonna happen!

    • America says:

      Oh please, the Renaults they’ve sent to America over the years have been absolute foreign crap. First hand experience tells me so. Maybe they’re better in Europe, but i doubt it.

    • CZenda says:

      Yeah. But Logans really DO rust, this is a fact. However, I fully agree that “German quality” is an empty phrase. I had Focus made in Germany and the quality of assembly was incomparably inferior to what I am used to from Italian jobs. And it was not Helmut sobering up after Oktoberfest, other owners experienced the same.

      • Tiger says:

        Well it was still a Ford, what did you expect. A good German car is an expensive Audi, Porsche or Merc, not some Focus.

    • Tiger says:

      @notgiven: sorry but that is just the way it is. In order to built proper cars or machines, the organization needs experience. You just cannot hire a bunch of shepherds or call-center associates and start building good and reliable cars. The more reliable the system needs to be, the more experience the organization needs to have. No matter if we talk about cars, pumps, machines or appliances. A Samsung or LG washing machine is still far away from a Miele with 20 years guarantee!

  21. CZenda says:

    Do not believe everything they tell you. We (I and my wife/her stepfather) were buing the appliances at about the same time. Ariston/Liebherr fridges and Beko (Turkish, OMFG!)/Bosch dishwashers. Guess what? Ariston and Beko are still running OK, the German stuff is recycled (not to mention that the Bosh dishwasher was repaired twice within the legal 2-yrs period).
    And, BTW, Maserati rocks, Audi sucks :D

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