Supporting the regions
Azubi Car V in the offing
Azubi Car, the student car project, continues with a new
edition. For the fifth consecutive year, students and teachers of the Machinery Apprenticeship Centre will produce
a unique ŠKODA, a car set to demonstrate the team’s expertise and skills. The completion of the car and its public presentation are scheduled for early June.
ŠKODA AUTO is becoming increasingly active in the regions
where the company operates its plants and where most of its
employees reside. A considerable number of company-run initiatives are designed to improve the quality of community
life across a variety of areas, including arts & entertainment,
sports and other leisure-time activities, as well as the development of transport infrastructure, education and safety. In
2018, the brand will continue its cooperation with the Kvasiny
region, smart city projects and Mladá Boleslav attractiveness
surveys aimed to find out what might attract young people to
move to this region.
The first series-production electrified ŠKODA, a ŠKODA
SUPERB plug-in hybrid to be produced by the Kvasiny
plant, will be launched in 2019. In 2020, the Mladá Boleslav plant will start producing the brand’s first purely
electric car. Besides electric cars, Mladá Boleslav will also
produce electrical components for plug-in hybrid vehicles
used by several VW Group brands - this production will
be launched in 2019, but the plant already has to prepare
for the new production processes this year.
The ŠKODA Museum foyer and gallery will host several exhibitions this year: History of Laurin & Klement
and ŠKODA Advertising (February–June), Victories Full
of Dust (July–October) and First Kilometres in the First
Republic (from November). The museum’s main premises will feature exhibitions to commemorate 100 years of
Czechoslovakia from the industrial and motoring perspectives. ŠKODA Mobil will highlight this anniversary in
a special supplement this autumn.
SPORTS AND TRAVEL
New concepts and technologies
The ŠKODA AUTO DigiLab is starting its second year of existence with a variety of innovations. In January, a new office is opening in Tel Aviv, Israel, one of the world’s leading
centres for new technologies. The Israel-based DigiLab plans
to bring ŠKODA AUTO several start-up companies that develop new concepts for the mobility of the future. Many other projects are taking place in Prague, and some of them will
be launched soon. More than 40 projects are currently underway and in various stages of progress. DigiLab has launched
a car-sharing platform (shared car ownership) called HoppyGo (www.hoppygo.cz) that already offers more than 350 cars,
and another new project is coming soon: Uniqway, a student
car-sharing project, is scheduled to be launched in Q1.
Production: extension of
capacities and digitisation
The demand for ŠKODA vehicles is growing, and the
brand carries on investing in its production capacities.
The Mladá Boleslav plant will build a new paint shop,
one of Europe’s most advanced and most environmentally friendly facilities of its kind. ŠKODA AUTO will invest EUR 214.5 million in the new operation and create
as many as 650 new jobs. The paint shop will be commissioned in June 2019. In January this year, the brand’s
main plant (Mladá Boleslav) launched production of the
KAROQ, the only model currently produced by two local plants. The modernisation of the plant’s assembly
line cost EUR 16.6 million. The plant continues to modernise its infrastructure and production lines and is getting ready for further extension of its production capacities. This year will see the brand place special emphasis
on extending the product portfolio in its Czech and international plants, primarily in the SUV category. In February, ŠKODA plans to launch production of the KODIAQ
in Russia and then two brand-new market-specific models in China. The production launch of the modernised
FABIA is scheduled for the summer (in Mladá Boleslav).
More than ever before, ŠKODA AUTO’s production operations are confronted with new technologies and digitisation. Software solutions, information management
skills and the ability to create new business opportunities
are playing an increasingly important role. The responsibility for these areas and subjects lies with the PPD Department, which is already fully focused on digital projects relating to Industry 4.0, and we can therefore expect
many new actions and initiatives in this area in 2018.
On the way to electric cars
ŠKODA will continue launching new models in 2018, and
some of them are being prepared to follow up the VISION
E concept car. March will see the premiere of the facelifted FABIA and the KODIAQ Laurin & Klement. The modernised SUPERB will come hand in hand with a plug n
y id model whose prototype will be presented in September. You can also look forward to derivatives of some
of the existing models.
New business model
A new business model was launched in January: ŠKODA
AUTO Czech Republic customers can now order ŠKODA
Bez starostí (“Easy ŠKODA”) operational leasing agreements
from the comfort of their own home. The brand announced
its plan to launch this business models earlier, and the
Czech Republic is pioneering the project. The customer
chooses and orders a vehicle, executes (signs) the agreement and pays on www.skoda-online.cz and then collects
the car at the dealership concerned. ŠKODA promises delivery times starting at 14 days. The new sales model will extend the customer service portfolio while opening up an opportunity to approach new target groups that are essential
for ŠKODA’s further growth.