Daimler Trucks’ joint venture with Russian truckmaker Kamaz – Fuso Kamaz Trucks Rus – is launching the Fuso Canter onto the Russian market with assembly from semi-knocked-down kits imported from Japan to Kamaz’s plant in Naberezhnye Chelny.
Sales of the vehicles will start in June following the premiere of the vehicle at the Comtrans trade show for commercial vehicles, which took place in Moscow last week.
The 7.5-ton vehicles are being shipped from Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation’s (MFTBC) Kawasaki plant in Kanegawa, Japan.
Daimler is the primary shareholder in MFTBC and established its 50:50 joint venture with Kamaz in December 2008 for the import, production and sale of Fuso trucks in Russia (read more here).  
“An initial core group of approximately 30 dealer locations is being established to cover major cities including Moscow, St Petersburg, Novosibirsk, Yekaterinburg and Krasnodar,” said a MFTBC spokesperson. “The network will include dealers affiliated with Kamaz and Mercedes-Benz trucks, as well as independent shops. The first dealers of FKTR in Russia are Mercedes-Benz Sever in Moscow and Fuso Center Kazan in Kazan.”
With reference to the delivery of the SKDs to Russia and the company’s plans for a greater level of localization in the near future, the company is still finalising its logistics provision and would only tell Automotive Logistics News that it was “currently looking into the best logistical solution possible with [its] Russian and Japanese partners.”
“Concerning the production volume, local production is expected to rise to a level of several thousand units after start up, but will start at lower volumes,” added the spokesperson.
Daimler and Kamaz are involved in a second 50:50 joint venture based on SKD unit assembly. Called Mercedes-Benz Trucks Vostok, it will assemble Actros and Axor trucks, also at the Naberezhnye Chelny plant, from the second quarter of 2010.