Skoda will launch 30 new models by 2023, at least 10 of which will be electrified, the Czech brand has announced at its annual conference.
Its electrification strategy will kick off this year with the launch of the Superb plug-in hybrid and the electric Citigo city car.
Its first model on the MEB electric platform, which was developed by parent firm the Volkswagen Group, will arrive in 2020. The MEB-based electric SUV will be a production version of the Vision iV recently shown at Geneva motor show.
Skoda has previously said it would have 10 electrified models by 2025, so this announcement suggests it has accelerated its plans to achieve this goal at least two years earlier. At that time, it was confirmed that six would be plug-in hybrids and four would be electric.
More imminent arrivals in the broader model line-up include the recently revealed Scala hatchback and Kamiq SUV, as well as a heavily updated, not-yet-seen Octavia – Skoda’s biggest selling model – later this year.
The Digilabs are working on a number of vehicle-on-demand projects such as the private peer-to-peer car sharing app Hoppy Go and the student car-sharing platform Uniqway.
The maker is also currently testing a delivery service, by which parcels are delivered directly to the boot of customers’ cars, similar to what Amazon and Volvo already offer in the States.
It is also working with cities on smart cities. Last October, it signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Prague, said Maier. “It covers the optimisation of the flow of traffic. In Prague, 30% of time in the car is spent finding a parking space.
“We are trying to expand our range of mobility services and of course we are trying to reduce our impact on the environment.”
VW Group’s growth in India
Skoda is also ramping up its roll-out in India, where a small SUV will be unveiled next year. Since taking over management of the region for the VW Group in 2018, Skoda has opened a technology centre in Pune, India, which it describes “as the first major step in the implementation of the project”. It will localise 95% of production of the vehicles, which will be both Skoda and Volkswagen models.
R&D boss Christian Strube said: “By opening the Technology Centre, we are underlining our determination to make the INDIA 2.0 project a success.
“India has excellent universities and highly qualified staff; this state-of-the-art facility will help us to unlock that huge potential – especially with regard to design and development. Local development is the key to success.”