OAO Moskvitch stopped car production in 2002 when it filed for bankruptcy, which was finalized in 2006. We first caught wind of the brand's revival in May this year when Renault decided to sell its 67.69% share in AvtoVAZ to the Central Research and Development Automobile and Engine Institute of Russia (NAMI). The decision was taken because of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, which also prompted Nissan to leave the country earlier this month.
Automotive News Europe cites Moscow mayor Sergei Sobyanin saying new Moskvich cars will begin to roll off the assembly line as early as December 2022. When Renault sold its controlling stake in the Renault Avtoframos plant, Sobyanin promised that thousands of jobs would be retained at the renamed Moscow Automobile Factory Moskvich. The facility halted operations after Renault decided to exit Russia and hasn't made any cars since then.
The plan is to assemble 600 vehicles until the end of the year, with 200 to be purely electric. For 2023, Moskvich intends to ramp up production to 50,000 units. To make it happen, five billion rubles (about $82 million) are being invested at the factory per an announcement made in August by the Moscow mayor's office in association with Kamaz.
The truck maker is interested in finding a partner to build cars, and ANE reports it's teaming up with JAC Motors. The Chinese automaker is believed to supply not only the design and engineering platform but also the tools needed by the factory to build the cars.
It should be mentioned that although Renault has left Russia, the deal it signed allows the French automaker to buy back its stake within the next six years. Nissan, which also sold its assets to NAMI for €1 has a similar deal, meaning it could theoretically return at any point until 2029.