Czech Prime Minister Sobotka visits Volkswagen Group headquarters

  • Meeting between Prof. Dr. Martin Winterkorn, CEO of Volkswagen AG; Christian Klinger, Board Member at Volkswagen AG and ŠKODA Supervisory Board Chairman; Prof. Dr. h.c. Winfried Vahland, CEO of ŠKODA; Jaroslav Povšík, ŠKODA Union Chairman
  • 23 years of successful partnership between Volkswagen and ŠKODA
  • Czechs’ tradition in car manufacture
  • ŠKODA to produce a new model at Kvasiny plant
  • ŠKODA is the heart of the Czech automotive industry


Mladá Boleslav/Wolfsburg, 14 March 2014 – The successful partnership between Volkswagen AG and ŠKODA was just one of the topics discussed. For nearly 23 years, ŠKODA has been part of the largest automotive group in Europe. Joining forces with Volkswagen in April 1991 was the initial spark for ŠKODA’s rapid ascent to becoming an internationally successful volume brand.

“ŠKODA has been inextricably linked to Volkswagen for the past 23 years. Together we have formed an impressive German-Czech success story. Under the umbrella of Volkswagen, the ŠKODA has seen a five-fold increase in sales and has become a global player. Clearly, ŠKODA is and will remain to be an important strategic spearhead for the Volkswagen Group,”explains Prof. Dr. Martin Winterkorn, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen AG. Besides, he announced the production of a new model at the ŠKODA plant in Kvasiny.

“The decision to produce a new vehicle at Kvasiny will strengthen the location. This will ensure the long-term prosperity of Kvasiny, as well as Mladá Boleslav and Vrchlabí,” saysŠkoda CEO Prof. Dr. h.c. Winfried Vahland.

“ŠKODA AUTO is one of the gems of Czech industry with a significant impact on our overall economy. This is why I am very pleased that another model is going to be produced in the Czech Republic, which will result in the creation of new jobs and investments. Supporting investments is one of the most important issues for us as a government. We are also going to continue our efforts in supporting future investments, for example through technology and transport infrastructure in these regions,” explains Czech Prime Minister, Bohuslav Sobotka.

“ŠKODA’s development since joining Volkswagen is unique in the automotive industry,” says Prof. Vahland.

“Volkswagen’s entry in April 1991 was the initial spark for our company’s success over the last 23 years.”

“ŠKODA’s roots lie in the heart of the Czech Republic – one of the longest-established industrial centres in Europe, with world-renowned craftsmanship and engineering. This is the treasure of our workforce, which has contributed to the company’s success,” Vahland thanks ŠKODA Union Chairman, Jaroslav Povšík. “This German-Czech automotive alliance has led to the rebirth of one of the longest-established automobile brands over the past two decades. In the years ahead, ŠKODA will continue to grow in close cooperation with the Volkswagen Group,” said Vahland.

Since entering into partnership with Europe’s largest automotive group, Škoda’s sales have increased five-fold, from under 200,000 to over 900,000 vehicle sales per year. The Czech manufacturer offered a single model line 23 years ago, today there are seven. From being focused on the Eastern-European market, the brand has become an international player, selling vehicles on over 100 markets worldwide. The brand has completely overhauled its production facilities and built a high-capacity development centre in Mladá Boleslav.

The Czech manufacturer is setting new goals based on the successes of the past 23 years. As part of ŠKODA’s growth strategy, sales are expected to rise to at least 1.5 million units per year. To this end, ŠKODA launched the most comprehensive model campaign in corporate history around three years ago. Since then, the range has been renewed, modernized and expanded to seven model lines across important market segments.

ŠKODA’s model and design campaign is moving to the next level this year. The brand has recently presented its Coupé design concept, the ‘ŠKODA VisionC’ at this year’s Geneva Motor Show. The emotional, five-door coupé highlights the dawn of the brand and is leading the next steps in the evolution of ŠKODA’s design language. This year ŠKODA is also introducing the new ŠKODA Octavia Scout and the new ŠKODA Octavia G-TEC, which runs on CNG.

ŠKODA – The heart of the Czech automotive industry

Prof. Dr. Vahland underlines the tremendous importance of ŠKODA AUTO for the Czech Republic, “ŠKODA AUTO is the heart of the Czech automotive industry and is an important pillar of the Czech economy.” In 2012, the company achieved a turnover of 262.6 billion CZK, making it the production company with the highest sales in Central Europe. ŠKODA AUTO holds a 7.3% share of all Czech exports. In 2012 alone, the company paid 2.58 billion CZK in income taxes.

ŠKODA AUTO employs a total of 25,000 people in the Czech Republic. A further 150,000 people work for suppliers. In its home market, the company has three production locations: the main plant in Mladá Boleslav and the facilities in Kvasiny and Vrchlabí.To strengthen its market position in Europe, the company continues to invest in the Czech sites: In 2012 alone, the company’s capital investments rose by around 46% to €832 million.

ŠKODA is the only automobile manufacturer that not only produces in the Czech Republic, but also has a large development centre. Over 2,000 specialists, engineers, designers and constructors work in technical development. The ŠKODA Development & Technology Centre is currently the fourth-largest development centre in the Volkswagen Group worldwide and is undergoing expansion. The company is investing around €34 million into the construction of the new centre, specializing in powertrain development. This is currently one of the largest development investments in the Czech Republic.