General Motors Corp. and Elabuga Automotive Works have formed a joint venture to build and assemble up to 50,000 Chevrolet Blazer sport utility vehicles annually in Elabuga, Tatarstan. The SUVs will be sold in the former Soviet Union markets. The project--the first automotive joint venture in Russia by a North American manufacturer--is subject to approval by the Russian government. Production could begin within 24 months from the final approval date. Marketing and distribution of the Blazers will be handled through the existing GM franchise network and by newly appointed distributors of the joint venture.