Model: Autogrand VAZ 2106 Zhiguli/Lada 2106
Line: Autogrand Russian Series
Where to get it: Autogrand on Ebay
I’ve had this one stirring since I did the Autogrand feature way back in February. But when I first featured the Russian Series lineup, the only 2106 I had access to was my modified example. I thought it deserved it’s own spotlight (as do some of the other Autogrand cars) but didn’t want to distract from how good the casting is, and for that I needed a totally standard example. And I’ve recently managed to acquire one so it’s time to take a good look at what I think is the pick of the Autogrand range. And to give it a suitable backdrop I took it to a surviving 60s British tower block complex, akin to the Soviet Khrushchyovka or the East German Plattenbau apartment blocks
The VAZ Zhiguli 2106 itself needs no introduction. It’s one of the most recognisable cars on the planet. Known to most export markets as the Lada 1600 or Lada 2106, it was one of the most successful Lada models. Production spanned 30 years from 1976 all the way up until 2006 and the 2106 can be found everywhere from the Russian Far East, through the Ukrainian steppes, throughout Europe and to as far afield countries as Canada and Venezuela.
Autogrand’s version is a brilliant recreation, and captures the real thing very well indeed. The details are abound, the Cyrillic Zhiguli badge can be made out on the bootlid, as can the famous sailing ship (Lada is derived from a Slavic word for boat) grille badge. Some of the chromed parts on the real car have been well replicated, and the bumpers are seperately molded, a detail that always gives an edge. It’s got the cheap but rugged charm of the real Ladas down to a tee.
Even the wheels look good. They look like they could be a Lada optional extra from a 90s accessories brochure, or indeed just a set of auto shop alloy wheels bolted on by a proud owner.
Unless you’re lucky enough to reside in the countries these are sold in store, Ebay is your best choice, as they pop up relatively often. And if you can find one of the sellers operating out of Central Europe, these can go for as little as €5-€7 including postage to the UK. The real 2106 was for the cost conscious motorist, and fittingly Autogrand’s version is within reach for the cost conscious collector.