Lada Riva 1500

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Although introduced in the early 1980s, the Riva's origins are older: it is a restyled version of the Fiat 124 -based Lada type VAZ-2101 "Zhiguli" saloon, which was introduced in 1970. The Riva itself is officially designated – and known in the home market – as VAZ-2105 (base saloon), VAZ-2104 (estate), and VAZ-2107 (deluxe saloon identified by large chrome grille). Other names sometimes used include Pyatyorka ("the five") and Semyorka ("the seven"). In Russia, VAZ-2105, VAZ-2104 and VAZ-2107 are considered to be different cars rather than variants but nonetheless all of them are part of a single "Klassika" ("Classic") family along with older models such as the VAZ-2101.

Mechanically, the car is virtually identical to the first-generation VAZ-2101 model, featuring the Fiat-derived engines and transmissions, coil spring suspension all round and aluminium drum brakes on the rear wheels. The major mechanical changes came in the 1990s when single point fuel injection and catalytic converters were specified in an attempt to keep up with emissions legislation.

Tightening safety and emissions legislation led to the Riva being withdrawn from most Western European markets by 1997, although it is still in production at the AvtoVAZ factory in the Russian Federation. In 2005, production of the estate model was taken over by Izh. before assembly was transferred to the Bogdan Group's LuAZ plant. The 2107 model is still in production, not only at AutoVAZ but also at the ZAZ factory in Ukraine. and at Suzuki 's factory in Egypt .

In the United Kingdom. the Lada Riva was one of the most popular low-budget cars on the market. Its spartan interiors, dated styling and outdated mechanicals meant that it was never actually aimed at buyers of market leaders' similar-sized products such as the Ford Sierra. Vauxhall Cavalier and Austin Montego. It was a competitor for fellow East European and Far Eastern cars from makes like Zastava's Yugo and FSO Polski Fiat 125p (both also based on Fiat designs); Skoda ; and Hyundai. Sales were initially very strong, with Lada passing the 20,000 mark in Britain's car sales charts for the first time in 1987. The Riva was still selling well in the early 1990s, but a lack of changes at a time when the rest of the competition was coming up with more modern designs counted against the Riva's fortunes and its sales fell. Combined with the need to adapt the car to stricter emissions regulations, this led to it being withdrawn from Britain (along with the rest of the Lada range) in 1997.

Lada renowned to have been poorly built cars throughtout the 1980's and 1990's- a stigma which is still attached to the car manufacturer today.

Model variants included the Riva Signet, Riva 1200, Riva 1300, Riva 1500, and Riva 1600, with trim levels "E" and "L". A Turbo charged model Lada 2107 Turbo was sold in Finland. this version was made by Finnish Lada importer.

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