Upon releasing their latest model, called ‘Tara’, in late December, Iran’s largest car manufacturing company, Iran Khodro (IKCO), came to discover that the car would not start when it was unveiled for the first time in late December 2020.
This was recently reported by Iranian dissidents, including the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), and Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK/PMOI) who also said that the same incident with the same car happened when Iranian President Hassan Rouhani tried to start it up in front of the press.
The MEK went on to say, “The ayatollahs’ policy is nothing but plundering Iran’s resources and they are not about to improve Iran in any field except those strengthening their dictatorship with terrorism, costly missile, and nuclear programs. This is the main reason that Tara doesn’t start…its why Iran’s vehicle manufacturing industry has not yet started and has been broken apart.”
Iran Khodro was founded in 1962. When the ayatollahs seized power in the revolution of 1979, IKCO was sheltered by the governmental National Industries Organization and the ayatollahs and the newfound Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) continued to produce the cars after they took over the company.
The latest model, Tara, is similar to the Peugeot 301, but it’s wasting Iranian’s money due to the poor quality of the build. This failure can be said for its predecessors.
The MEK reported that Paykan was Iran’s national vehicle until 2005. The ayatollahs said that they would replace it with the new Paykan using the design from the Peugeot 405 chassis, but after spending an estimated $2-3 billion, the car never reached the production line.
Another estimated $1 billion was spent on designing a new “national car” called Samand, which used the same Peugeot model, but it failed the safety tests conducted by Thatcham Research, a European New Car Assessment program at its London testing facility.
“In this day and age, all the knowledge and technology are available to produce decent, safe vehicles,” the MEK went on to say. “The regime just couldn’t produce anything that could match modern safety standards.”
In comparison, South Korea car manufacturing companies began just 5 years after Iran, but today they have become one of the most successful cars making industries in the world.
According to the dissidents, in both the Shah and ayatollah eras, IKCO and other major factories were under the influence of corrupt policies of the government.
“The Shah did not want the industry to be independent, and the ayatollahs completely ruined the industry,” they said.
In 2017, Iran’s state-run TV revealed that Iran’s vehicle parts manufacturing industry is quite simply, a mafia gang.
An IKCO employee reported that gangs directed the operations of the business and when a new president came into power, he brought his own gang and much of the profits went into their pockets.
To date, IKCO has continued to change the designs of their pre-made cars or combine different parts of various vehicles whilst claiming they are making new designs, when in fact only the names of the models are changing.