Iran’s automobile industry is making further inroads into the Gulf market, with the launch of the Iranian-made Saipa in Bahrain, through the A.A. Bin Hindi dealership, reported Gulf News.
The 1.3-liter Saipa comes in two versions. These are the Saba, a four-door hatchback, and the Nasim, a five-door hatchback. The Saipa has been available in the UAE since 1996, and is also sold in Saudi Arabia.
The Iranian automobile industry currently produces more than 300,000 cars per annum, 60 percent of local demand. But the government aims to increase the production by two-thirds over a two-year period.
In 1999, Iran produced 221,000 passenger cars, 44,000 pick-up trucks, 3,400 minibuses, 5,182 buses, 8,500 four-wheel drives and 7,380 trucks.
Following the Islamic revolution in 1979, the Iranian government banned car imports. However, certain state bodies were permitted to import a small number of cars for special purposes, as could foreign embassies. Today, 35 percent of foreign cars are imported through Dubai and 15 per cent through Sharjah. ¯ (Albawaba-MEBG)