The only one in Belarus, Lada Niva Travel, was surrounded by journalists from all sides - an unprecedented case for a car that has changed only in certain details! A test drive is promised in March, but for now we are studying and testing the updated crossover in statics.
If in the 1980s in Togliatti they found out that their "Niva" would live not only to the 21st century, but also to its 21st century, they would be terribly surprised, because even then work was underway on the car next generation. But the late 1980s - early 1990s turned out to be "turbulent". And when in 1998 the Niva-2, which received the VAZ-2123 index and was ready for serial production, was shown at the Moscow Motor Show, the plant itself was no longer ready for its release - there was simply no money for it.
As a result, the license for the production of the car, and at the same time the name "Niva" were sold to the concern General Motors. The joint venture "GM-AvtoVAZ" was created, which in September 2002 began to produce the Chevrolet Niva model.
Of course, neither the American brand, nor the spelling of the name in Latin letters could hide the fact that Niva is constructively an evolutionary development of the VAZ-2121. For example, the engine and transmission with minimal changes migrated from the old "Niva". However, compared to the previous model, the body and interior were more modern, the interior was more spacious, the level of ride comfort and controllability was a cut higher than that of the VAZ-21213. Objectively speaking, at the time of its appearance, the Chevrolet Niva could be considered the best production car in the Russian car industry.
But the years went by! What was still more or less relevant in the early 2000s became obsolete in 2010. The model was modernized several times, improving certain places and introducing new equipment, but the car has not fundamentally changed until our days.
Alas, the Niva II concept remained a project: the subsidiary joint venture "GM-AvtoVAZ" simply did not have the funds to prepare a new model for production, and the "parents" themselves did not want to give money for this. Well, in December 2019, AvtoVAZ generally bought out the American stake in the joint venture, Niva became part of the Lada model range. For some time, the car was released in the same form, replacing only the nameplates. And then there was a restyling in the style ... No, despite the jokes about the RAV4, it's still Lada.
Major updates - in appearance. And the most ambitious are in the front of the body. This is a new narrower optics with running lights. No LEDs, but this is probably for the best when it comes to the cost of spare parts, although they would not be in the way in the "foglights".
However, the plastic of the fog lights is reinforced, and new bumpers are more resistant to minor mechanical damage. Both front and rear have two eyes, and this is a very correct solution for an SUV.
There is also a new bumper and LED lights at the back (they say that VAZ dealers in Russia have limited their sale to owners of old cars in order to avoid a shortage for warranty and "emergency" cars).
And also Niva Travel got a rear view camera with a washer! This is a rare occurrence for this segment.