EghtesadOnline: Sapra Motor, a domestic auto company, is set to showcase the Opel Mokka next week in Tehran.
Opel has had a very limited collaboration with Iran, with only brief spurts in exports since the 1979 Islamic Revolution and deals with private dealers in 2014.
According to Sapra’s public relations office, the model will be offered with several options and cost between 1.5 to 1.8 billion rials ($40,000 to $48,000). It is sold for half this price in Germany.
The model will fall in the same price range as Alfa Romeo Giulietta and Mitsubishi ASX, but will not offer anything even close to the build quality of the Italian and Japanese brands, Financial Tribune reported.
In addition to Mokka, the company is planning to import several other Opel models, including Insignia, Astra, Karl, Crossland X (built in Spain) and Cascada.
Sapra Motor will showcase Insignia next month but has said nothing about the price.
The Mokka does not stand out as much as its rivals in terms of style, but its high ground clearance, black plastic-molded bumpers and roof bars do lend it an off-road look.
Inside, it is quite similar to the latest Opel Astra with a quality feel to the plastics and a spacious driver’s area.
There are a lot of buttons to navigate in the center console which can be rather confusing but will appeal to those who do not like the touch screens.
In the rear there is plenty of head and leg room, while the seats up front are supportive with an optional high arm rest for the driver.
Mokka is fitted with a new 1.6-litre “Whisper diesel” in Europe, the local firm did not announce which engine the car would have in Iran.
> Corsa and Astra
France's PSA agreed to buy Opel from General Motors in March in a deal worth 2.2 billion euros ($2.3 billion), creating a new European car giant to challenge market leader Volkswagen.
The US-owned German brand was previously imported only by Tavan Khodro Jey, which recently re-launched itself as UAZ Iran, distributor of Russia’s UAZ Patriot and pickup variants.
Prior to Tavan importing the car, in the mid 1990s several hundred Corsa and Astra models entered the country.
Despite being previously owned by the American car manufacturer, several models had entered the Iranian market by dodging the US economic sanctions.
New and second hand models of the company are currently available on local auto websites.
According to Bama.ir, the Insignia has already entered the Iranian market. One white model of the car is listed on the site at 3.29 billion rials ($86,500), more than double the price in the European market.
This is while the same website displays a 2014 Opel Astra at 1.2 billion rials ($31,500), the same car in the British market would not fetch more than $6,000.