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Skoda is in the process of adding a new chapter to it's 124 year history book at an auto manufacturer. The Czech auto giant is launching a sub-brand called the iV that will cater for the development of the brand's own range of electric products, and a special ecosystem for mobility solutions.
Skoda says the 'i' stands for innovative and intelligent and the 'V' stands for vehicle. Skoda also said that they will invest a total of Euro 2 Billion over the next five years. The investment is towards the development of electric vehicles and new mobility services. The Euro 2 Billion amount marks the company's largest investment programme to date.
Bernhard Maier, Chief Executive Officer, Skoda Auto, said, "The right time has now come for Skoda to enter the era of electro-mobility. We are now able to fulfill essential customer requirements: long ranges, quick charging and - particularly important for us here at Skoda - affordable prices. In addition to our successful petrol, diesel and CNG engines, the new drive systems will quickly become a relevant part of our range. We anticipate that they will make up around 25 per cent of total sales by 2025."
Skoda recently introduced the Citigo-e iV and the Superb iV plug-in hybrid both of which Skoda says offer quick charging, long range travel, and affordable prices. In addition to the manufacture of an electric model range, Skoda is also developing a holistic and connected E-Mobility ecosystem.
Their E-Mobility ecosystem includes creating affordable wall boxes with different power outputs, which allow customers to recharge their vehicles at home. Also in development is a smartphone based service offered via Skoda Connect, that allows customers to to use the smartphone as an intelligent charging station finder. This service will offer the option of reserving a charging station in advance.
The first two 'all-electric' vehicles will be based on Volkswagen Group's MEB modular electric car platform, and will be introduced in 2020. One of these models is said to be a production version of the VISION iV SUV coupe. Skoda will also produce its iV models and electric components for other Group brands in the Czech Republic.
Starting this year, Skoda's main plant in Mlada Boleslav, Czech Republic, will also manufacture electric components for plug-in hybrid models from other Volkswagen Group brands. The company says it has already trained over 11,000 employees for electric car production.
Thoughts About Skoda Joining The Electric Revolution
It was just a matter of time before VW gave Skoda a 'go-ahead'. Skoda is one of the better performing auto companies present in India and it is a good thing they are entering the EV segment. It will be amazing to see what products they come up with, and we cannot wait to test drive the cars, when they launch that is.