Spotlight on Skoda

skoda logoAt Welsh VW Specialists, we like to let you know what’s happening in the VW Group (currently the World’s seventh largest company*). In our previous posts, we’ve looked at new projects for SEAT, Audi and Volkswagen and the group as a whole. Which means we’ve been woefully neglecting one marque — Skoda. This post, we’re going to put that right, by reviewing the Czech giant’s developments over the first quarter of 2017.

January

Skoda began 2017 with a bang, posting a record number of annual new car registrations in the UK. They registered 80,372 cars, an increase of 7.6% on 2015. Particularly stellar results came from the Superb, with sales up by a whopping 73.2%.

The January good news continued as Skoda scooped three 2017 What Car awards, for the Kodiaq, Fabia Hatchback and Superb Estate. These prestigious awards, in three different categories, really showcase the breadth of Skoda’s engineering and design talent.

February

February saw Skoda launch a major advertising campaign featuring Sir Bradley Wiggins. The 90 second Driven by Something Different advert was directed by accomplished Czech film-maker Martin Krejci. According to the company, it reflects how Skoda sees the values of its customers:

an individual self-confidence, optimism, and a spirit that sets them apart from the predictable.

We think it’s great.

March and April

As March marched into April, Skoda were making their presence felt at the Shanghai Motor Show. The company revealed their first ever electric car, the Vision E. The stylish SUV will have an estimated range of 310 miles and will be level 3 autonomous (it can park itself, autopilot on motorways, and avoid road hazards). The Vision E should be on the forecourts in 2020.

Rounding off their first quarter, Skoda announced that they had named their latest compact SUV: it’s going to be the KAROQ. They’ve derived the name from kaa’raq, the language spoken by some of the indigenous people of Alaska. Specifically, it’s spoken in the Kodiak region. As Skoda already named their Kodiaq model after that archipelago, it all hangs together nicely (as well as sounding cool).

Naming a vehicle may not seem a big deal, but considering some of the horrible offerings in years gone by (Nissan Cedric, anyone?), it’s something car manufacturers think carefully about.

Not bad…

We think our quick round-up shows Skoda to be a thriving auto manufacturer, who both understand today’s market and are embracing the future. Not bad for a company that started life as a bicycle repair shop!

Just a reminder that we love our Skodas, Audis, SEATs and Volkswagens. If you need yours repaired, MOTed, or serviced, we’re only a phone call away.

 

*Fortune Magazine’s 2016 analysis, correct at time of publication.