Off-Roader Receives ABS and Euro 5 Engine Updates

The iconic Russian off-roader Lada Niva has received some updates from automaker AvtoVAZ. Unchanged since its launch in 1977, the rugged 3-door SUV now gets anti-lock brakes (ABS) and a Euro 5-compliant engine.

The addition of ABS improves the safety credentials of the dated Niva. The upgraded Euro 5 motor replaces the earlier engine to meet stricter emissions regulations, although details like displacement are unclear.

The updates come after supply chain issues forced AvtoVAZ to remove certain components like airbags from the Niva when production resumed in 2022 post the Russia-Ukraine conflict. The automaker has also used engines from Chinese brands temporarily.

The boxy Niva remains identical in size and shape to the original model, still measuring just 3.7 meters in length. While it continues sales mostly in Russia, the SUV was also marketed in some European countries over the years.

The Lada Niva was never officially sold in India, but some privately imported units can be found. The similarly old-school Russian UAZ-469 SUV though has served with the Indian armed forces and can be spotted on roads.

While basic, the brief updates will help the rugged, go-anywhere Niva stay usable for buyers even after 45 years of production. AvtoVAZ managing to keep this Cold War-era icon running despite challenges highlights the model’s lasting appeal.