EghtesadOnline: Contrary to reports that commercial vehicle importer Khodro Sazi Sina (KSS) has outbid Mammut Group's subsidiary on the contract for the import of Volkswagen-branded cars to Iran; the managing director of KSS has dismissed the original report as "baseless".
Mehdi Gharagozlu, a senior executive with the VW importer told the Financial Tribune on Wednesday, "This is the first time I have heard about this."
He went on to say, "We have always had commercial [import] deals with Volkswagen, and the deal is ongoing."
Ghazargozlu's comment follows a report a day earlier on Press TV website which said that the Volkswagen car import deal has now been awarded to KSS instead of Mammut Khodro.
According to Financial Tribune, VW has two representatives in Iran, one for commercial vehicle sales and one for the import and production of cars, he noted.
In the report by the state TV it was said that KSS was selected after “thorough and intense studies”.
The Tribune contacted the German automaker for clarification but the company did not comment by the time this report went to print.
Meanwhile, Mammut Khodro says, "We have been told that we should not disclose any information about our deal."
The current confusion over the ownership of the VW brand in the Iranian market follows months of public relations exercises by Mammut Group about their market strategy.
In January is was reported that a production line of a joint venture between Mammut and Volkswagen was launched at company's factory outside Karaj, west of Tehran.
The CEO and owner of Mammut Group, Mehrzad Ferdos told reporters at the time, “A deal has been concluded between Mammut and the German automaker Volkswagen,” asrekhodro.com a local automotive website reported at the weekend.
“The two company’s first joint production line will be launched by the end of the current Iranian year.”
A report last December on the website Persian Khodro, another local automotive website, said the VW Polo hatchback will be the first to be produced in Iran.
That car is a popular small vehicle in emerging markets.
The company also plans to continue importing luxury sedans including the Jetta and Sedan, some of which were seen at Imam Khomeini Airport Customs clearance area last month.
The privately-owned Mammut Industrial Group was established in 1992. It is active in a variety of fields, including the manufacture of cargo and commercial vehicles, trailers and prefab buildings. The car joint venture will be its first small vehicle undertaking.