The automotive exodus continues in Russia as Mazda is the latest name in a long string of car manufacturers to stop production. Tucked away in a press release about the latest financial results is news about Zoom-Zoom's decision to sell its stake in the 50:50 joint venture it had with local carmaker Sollers. The latter is buying the other half of the MSMR company for the "princely" sum of 1 euro.
However, it's goodbye only for now as the contract stipulates Mazda has the possibility to buy pack its 50-percent share at any time within the next three years for the same €1 amount. Similar decisions were taken earlier this year by Renault and Nissan as both sold their shares in the respective joint ventures for practically nothing but left the door open to possibly come back one day.
2019 Mazda CX-5 Long Term
In the financial report, Mazda says it'll record an extraordinary loss of around ¥12 billion, which works out to approximately €83 million or £73 million. The decision was taken "due to the situation in Ukraine that arose in February 2022." The Japanese car manufacturer stopped shipping parts to MSMR back in March before ending operations altogether a month later. Discussions were held between the two parties, but Mazda "sees no path to restarting the business."
Known officially as the Mazda Sollers Manufacturing Rus, the company had been operating a factory in Vladivostok since October 2012 with an annual production capacity of 50,000 units. Products included the CX-30, CX-5, and CX-9 SUVs along with the 6 saloon. Last year, Mazda grabbed 1.8 percent of the Russian car market.
Mazda's decision to sell its stake in the MSMR joint venture doesn't spell the end of the Vladivostok plant since a Sollers spokesperson told Reuters operations will be resumed in 2023 with "a new model lineup."