Iran Khodro's product design chief says 3 new models in the Samand sedan series will hit the market in the second half of this year.
One of the new models will have quality enhancements to over 50 separate parts and an improved exterior, said Iran Khodro's product design and development deputy Mohammad Kamjoo
But the most significant development in the announcement is the introduction of the first model in the Semand series with an automatic clutch.
Iran Khodro says the design and testing phase of the automatic vehicle has ended and that preparations for the car's mass production are now underway.
The vehicle is expected to hit the market by the end of the summer.
The new automatic model will utilize an AL4 gearbox manufactured by Peugeot, one of the few producers of automatic gearboxes in the world since assembling fewer than 10,000 units is not cost-effective for the manufacturer.
The third new Semand model to hit the market later this year will have a diesel engine.
The feasibility study for this vehicle in cooperation with Iran's IPCO Company has ended and production of various other diesel engine models is currently under review, Kamjoo said.
The head of product design at Iran Khodro also announced that the production of a gas-powered Samand is also under study and that the company is currently looking for the appropriate automatic gearbox for its gas engine vehicles.
Samand is generally referred to in Iran as the country's 'national car' because it is entirely assembled by Iran Khodro using domestically manufactured parts.