1st Emirati 4WD by end 2019

The new car plant offers an opportunity to attract international manufacturers.

Khaleej Times: The first Emirati four-wheel drive vehicle ‘Al Reem’ will hit the local and Arab market by the end of this year, with 13,000-4WD cars are to be manufactured in the first phase of the production line, Sandstorm Automotive Factory has announced.

The announcement was made during a press conference recently at the Dubai Investment Park, where the car assembly facility will be based.

The company also disclosed plans to launch another vehicle ‘S24’, a double-cabin pickup, with the two vehicles are designed and built entirely by Emirati workforce, in a move that aims to realise the UAE Vision 2030.

Inspired by the beauty and speed of the Arabian wild animal ‘gazelle’, ‘Al Reem’ is a 4X4 on and off – road vehicle characterised by its strength and ability to drive on sandy and rough roads, while the ‘S24’ model is a double-cabin truck with five seats.

The company emphasised that it has already embarked on the hiring process to recruit a large number of Emirati administrators and students with an aim to achieving the UAE Vision 2030.

Al Reem, the seven-seater vehicles will be assembled and manufactured at the Sandstorm plant, which is spreading over a total area of 48,000 square feet and is expected to be expanded in the upcoming phases of production. The factory, the first of its kind in the country and the GCC region, is designed to produce cars, whose 30-40 per cent of their components are locally made.

Dr Majida Al Azazi, CEO of Sandstorm Automotive Factory, said the new car plant offers a great opportunity to attract international manufacturers to the local market, a move that helps support the UAE’s strategy for economic diversification.

The company has plans to set up a second car factory in Abu Dhabi soon.

“We are extremely proud of this groundbreaking achievement, which is the first Emirati factory to manufacture different types of 4×4 vehicles – a major milestone that we truly cherish, as being the region’s first manufacturers to make the first Arab 4×4 cars,” she added.

Al Azazi said the factory was established after an-in-depth study, driven by our passion and determination to produce the first car. “We managed to conclude several partnerships and deals with global auto manufacturers from Europe and East Asia over the past seven years.”

The vehicles will be manufactured at the Sandstorm plant in compliance with the GCC specifications, following several tests conducted by an internationally certified German company.

The certified Sandstrom factory has the capacity to produce nearly 13,000 Al Reem cars, and S24 double-cabin pickups, with 30-40 per cent of their components are locally made. “We plan to increase this percentage to 80 per cent within the next four years, as part of our efforts to ensure that our cars are built with the locally made components,” Al Azazi said.

She highlighted that the Sandstorm Factory is the first nucleus to build an automotive industry base in the region, which will attract foreign manufacturers in the automotive industry in the UAE, which will eventually help develop the industry sector locally, and transfer the automobile technology and knowledge, making the UAE a regional player in the automotive industry.

“By manufacturing local cars, designed and built by national cadres, along with seeking assistance from foreign expertise, we aim to boost the national industry. Therefore, 30 per cent of our administrative and technical staff are Emiratis,” said Al Azazi said that

Al Reem car will be available in six different colours- black, grey, silver, golden, pearl white and white, while the S24 car will be available in three colours- black, Brown and white.

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