Hyundai Motor Co. earlier this week began production at its new assembly plant in St. Petersburg, Russia.
The plant, operated by Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Russia (HMMR), will make the Solaris sedan, which is designed for Russia's climate and drivers, according to the company.
"This is a historic moment, not only for Hyundai, but for Russia, as we are the first foreign automaker to operate a full-cycle manufacturing plant here," said Gui-Il Chun, general director of HMMR, a fully owned subsidiary of Hyundai Motor Co. "We are now truly part of Russia and we will focus on supplying customers with the best products at the best time."
The plant employs more than 1,300 workers. In September, the automaker said it aims to create 5,300 jobs at the facility by 2012, together with 11 parts suppliers.
|Hyundai's new assembly plant in Russia will produce the Solaris sedan.|
The automaker noted that the Russian facility is its sixth and most modern overseas plant, boasting a high level of automation in the production process. At several stations, for example, 85% of the welding is automated.
The Russian facility is part of Hyundai's strategy to build assembly plants in the so-called BRIC countries. The automaker began construction of a third plant in China late last year and plans to break ground later this year on a plant in Brazil.
Hyundai is the fifth-largest automaker by sales in Russia.