Putin test drives Europe’s cheapest car

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin test drove Wednesday a new concept car called Lada Granta, which is to be marketed as Europe’s cheapest car, Xinhua reported.

Putin, who paid a visit to the Autovaz car plant in Samara region, was able to start the engine of the budget sedan on the fifth attempt only. He tried twice to open the hood, the state-run Itar-Tass news agency reported.

Upon completion of the 1,400-metre test drive, Putin said that Lada Granta was “good to carry potatoes,” referring to the car’s large luggage compartment.

Lada Granta is scheduled for mass production in December 2011. Autovaz says it will be the cheapest car in the European market, with its price ranging from 190,000 to 300,000 rubles ($6,800-10,800).

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