Our reporters empty their notebooks to round up this week's gossip from across the automotive industry
2 January 2018

This week's snippets of automotive news include Skoda customer loyalty, a harder Volkswagen Polo GTI, Mitsubishi's electrification struggle and Bentley's customers.

Skoda loyalty: 

Skoda customers show remarkable loyalty when it comes to replacing their cars, according to the company’s CEO, Bernhard Maier, and that’s helping to power sales. “It’s at 60% in some markets, which is remarkable for the industry,” he said. “The loyalty has been so consistent that we can now look to it to play a major role in our growth strategy.” 

Volkswagen Polo GTI: 

Volkswagen chassis development boss Karsten Schebsdat has hinted that a harder-hitting version of the Volkswagen Polo GTI could easily be produced because the “chassis can give more”. He said: “The car is so stable even in high-speed corners that there is definitely much more capacity [for a more focused version].” 

Mitsubishi's electrification struggle: 

Mitsubishi would have struggled to survive the switch to electrified, connected and autonomous cars on its own, according to the company’s executive vice president, Mitsuhiko Yamashita, but not so now it is part of an alliance with Renault and Nissan. “Mitsubishi was a million-car-a-year company. Now it’s part of a 10-million-a-year group. Only with group structures can you develop this,” he said. 

Bentley customers: 

Bentley customers can no longer be pigeonholed into one age category, said boss Wolfgang Dürheimer. In China, the average age of a Bentley owner is 35 years old, whereas it is 55 in the UK. “We don’t have the same customers around the world any more,” he explained, saying that younger generations find the brand “aspirational”. 

Read more 

Bentley Continental GT review

Skoda Superb review 

Our Verdict

Volkswagen Golf

New 1.5-litre petrol engine promises to help keep the refreshed Volkswagen Golf ahead of rivals

Join the debate

Comments
2

2 January 2018

...yes, this loyal Skoda owner ( Octavia VRS and Citigo plus many previous Skodas) would have liked to have seen a proper Yeti replacement. ( I loved mine)

But what do we get? A VAG clone devoid of character!!!!

This is NOT the way to keep your customers loyal Skoda.......

Steam cars are due a revival.

2 January 2018

Skoda should value and nurture this customer loyalty, but the Volkswagen group's autocracy is well documented, so unfortunately they will always have to what VW top brass tell them to do.

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Ford Ecosport 1.0 Ecoboost 125 Zetec front
    First Drive
    18 January 2018
    Can the updated Ford Ecosport improve its reputation and become the small SUV of choice, or is it another misguided effort from the Blue Oval?
  • Nissan e-NV200 Evalia
    First Drive
    18 January 2018
    All-electric seven-seater is rarity among MPVs, and for good reason: the Nissan e-NV200 Evalia is pricey and still has limited usability. Expect to see plenty as city taxis and delivery vans, though
  • Seat Arona 1.5 TSI EVO FR
    First Drive
    17 January 2018
    Seat is on a roll with the Ateca and Ibiza; can they score a hat trick with the new Arona?
  • Jaguar E-Pace D240
    First Drive
    17 January 2018
    With much riding on the success of the Jaguar E-Pace, we have been impressed with the mid-level diesel version, but now its time for the most powerful oilburner to go under the spotlight
  • Vauxhall VXR8 GTS-R
    Car review
    12 January 2018
    Vauxhall bids farewell to its line of Aussie performance legends in some style with the limited edition VXR8 GTS-R