Skoda plans electric car assault after record year

  • 19 new models planned over the next two years…
  • …culminating in 10 electrified vehicles by 2025
  • Skoda posts record worldwide profits in 2017

Skoda has confirmed it will have 10 electrified cars in its model line-up by 2025, including a production version of the SEAT Arona-rivalling Vision X concept that debuted at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show.

This comes as the Czech manufacturer announced its best-ever year in 2017, with worldwide deliveries reaching a new high of 1,200,500 vehicles, an increase of 6.6% over 2016.

Big investment for hybrid and electric cars

As well as committing around £2bn over the next five years in the company’s alternative energy and mobility plans, Skoda has confirmed that within the next two years, 19 new models (including bodystyle variants) will be launched worldwide, including a production version of the all-electric coupe-SUV Vision E (below) in 2020.

Skoda Vision E sketch

Other confirmed new entries to the model range will include an all-electric Skoda Citigo in 2019, and in the same year, a plug-in hybrid (PHEV) version of the Skoda Superb.

The plan, which was announced at the company’s factory in Czech Republic is called Electro-mobility strategy, and it’s central to Skoda’s future growth strategy. The company’s direction is being shaped by forthcoming EU CO2 legislation, which will heavily fine car manufacturers that can’t get its fleet average to meet the more stringent emissions rules.

When will the electrified Skodas go on sale?

By 2025, the company will have expanded its range of PHEV and battery-powered models to include the Fabia and Octavia replacements, following on from Volkswagen and Audi’s rapidly expanding battery electric vehicle (BEV) range.

In addition to the production of electric cars in the Czech Republic, Skoda will also be responsible for the production of PHEV components for the entire Volkswagen Group from 2019.

Skoda Superb Sportline

Skoda needs to rapidly expand its car production capacity to meet global demand, which is currently capped at 1.2 million including China – and the arrival of the production version of the Vision X concept (above) will only add to that pressure.

Growth through electric vehicles

The growth looks set to continue into 2018, too, with Skoda recording its best January and February sales of all time, hitting 196,600 deliveries worldwide.

In the longer term, it’s important for Skoda to accelerate its rate of electrification. That’s why it appears to be side-stepping the mild-hybrid route and heading straight to PHEV and ultimately battery-electric vehicles.

Skoda Citigo

Skoda is looking further forward. The EU fleet average for 2025 will be reduced to 80.75g/km, and by 2030, this will drop further to 66.50g/km. Without a significant rise in the number of zero-emission vehicles, this will be a tough target to meet – hence Skoda’s race to electrification.

Octavia remains the most popular model

Despite launching two SUVs in the past two years, Skoda’s Octavia continues to be the biggest seller in the brand’s range. Sales of the flagship Skoda Superb are on the up, while the Kodiaq has also matched market predictions to achieve around 100,000 deliveries in its first full sales year.

However, in the UK at least, the smaller Karoq SUV is expected to outsell its Kodiaq big brother in 2018, with the Fabia also set for a sales boost thanks to its mid-life facelift. 

Skoda profits up 35%

With a range of cars that now spans seven models, Skoda has seen its worldwide revenue and operating profit increase exponentially over the last year. The latter is now at £1.4bn, while China remains the largest single market – delivering 325,000 vehicles (compared to the UK’s 80,000 vehicles)

The growth looks set to continue into 2018, too, with Skoda recording its best January and February sales of all time, hitting 196,600 deliveries worldwide.

The Skoda Vision X's electric layout