Iran’s largest carmaker, Iran Khodro Company (IKCO), has signed a 4-year contract with a German auto designer, the company’s president announced on Sunday, adding that a foreign team has also been hired for designing two new car platforms for the company.
“We have endorsed a 4-year contract with this designer and he is due to design two new platforms in the next four years,” IKCO President Hashem Yekeh Zareh told FNA.
“Accordingly, it was decided that a 10-member team visit Iran along with the German designer in the next one to two months to plan for designing two new car platforms.”
Noting that the German designer has been employed by Iran Khodro at least for four years, Yekeh Zareh said that other members of the team are also due to sign a 1 to 4-year contracts with IKCO.
Yekeh Zareh announced in February that German, Japanese and South Korean companies had called for cooperation with the Iranian car industry.
“Companies from Germany, Japan and South Korea have expressed willingness to work with Iranian auto industry,” he said at the time, adding, “The impacts of easing sanctions (on Iran) can be seen from next two or three months.”
He expressed the hope that the IKCO could cooperate with Peugeot and Renault soon. French companies should follow a new approach for their return and compensate (the loss).
Late on January, media sources said that removal of sanctions on Iran following the implementation of the Geneva nuclear deal between Tehran and the six major world powers has opened doors of the country’s lucrative market to the foreign companies, including French carmakers.
Two leading French carmakers of Renault and Peugeot used to supply about 100,000 and 458,000 kits a year for final assembly to Iran, respectively, before they had to leave due to US-led sanctions.
Over the past two years, the two carmakers’ production has plummeted almost 50 percent due to the sanctions.
Renault Chief Executive Carlos Ghosn said, “We consider that this is a potentially great market for the car industry and we want to be able to launch again the operation immediately when the sanctions are lifted.”