Russian president Vladimir Putin recently showed off a bit for a photo op—on the F1 race track. He’s keen to see Russian carmaker Aurus become a substantial global force. So the ex-KGB man turned autocrat took to the track to test drive the Russian-made Aurus sedan, and give the home-town boys a little exposure.
Putin’s no stranger to the brand; all of his motorcade vehicles come from Aurus. But the sedan is new to Russian showrooms. It’s essentially the same Senat model he’s usually driven around in, but of course without the armoring.
The Senat is plenty powerful thanks to a 4.4-liter V8 engine making 598 horsepower. Although details have yet to be revealed, the consumer model is believed to have some hybrid variant.
The new model is one of several Aurus cars introduced since 2012, as the automaker makes a bid to become Russia’s home-grown source for luxury cars, and perhaps compete with high-end automakers across the globe.
The styling cues are more than a little reminiscent of a certain British marque. Time will tell how Aurus fares in the global market.