Skoda, which has flourished since being bought by the VW Group 27 years ago, sold 1,200,500 vehicles last year, an increase of 6.6% over 2016. Its biggest market is China with 325,000 deliveries, followed by Germany, Czech Republic and Great Britain.
Its VW Golf rival, the Octavia, remains its runaway success with 418,300 units sold globally, and holds second place in the family hatchback segment in the European market.
Skoda sold 100,000 of its Kodiaq SUV globally last year, making a massive contribution to a segment Skoda was previously absent from.
The Karoq, which will have its first full year of sales in 2018, is expected to match or exceed Kodiaq volumes, production capacity permitting – something R&D boss Christian Strube has previously told Autocar is an issue.
This same problem is one reason why the Kodiaq Coupe, already on sale in China, has not yet been confirmed to be sold in Europe.
The Citigo city car is the weakest link in Skoda’s line-up – it is only sold in Europe and sales in 2017 dropped 8.8%, the most of any of its models. Skoda has recently confirmed an electric version of the Citigo, a sister car of the VW Up and Seat Mii. will become Skoda’s first pure electric model.
Talking at the conference, Skoda CEO Bernhard Maier said: "2017 has impressively demonstrated how well our broad and attractive model range has been received: 2017 was the most successful year in the company's history with more than 1.2 million vehicles delivered.
He continued: “Not only will we be bringing out 19 new models by the end of 2020 but we will also be launching the most comprehensive investment programme in the company’s history: Within the next five years, Skoda will invest around €2bn into electromobility and new mobile services.”
The brand also confirmed it continue its global expansion, launching in Singapore later this year and with plans to launch in South Africa in 2019.
Skoda is the third biggest selling brand in the VW Group. Last year, VW sold 6.2m vehicles, followed by Audi with 1.8m vehicles. Seat shifted 468,400 units last year.
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