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50 years ago, the legendary ŠKODA 110 R Coupé celebrated its trade fair premiere in Brno. The elegant sports car with a rear engine was a huge sales success and served as the basis for the Czech car manufacturer’s legendary rally and racing cars. Alongside the ŠKODA 180 RS and 200 RS prototypes, the ŠKODA 130 RS, which later became known as the “Porsche of the East”, was also derived from the 110 R.

At the same time as celebrating the 125th anniversary of its founding, ŠKODA AUTO is also looking back in 2020 on the market launch of several models that have played a significant role in the automaker’s history. These vehicles include the 110 R, which added a dynamic sports coupé to ŠKODA’s model range at the beginning of the 1970s. 

In 1964 ŠKODA began producing the ŠKODA 1000 MB notchback saloon. With its self-supporting body, rear engine and rear-wheel drive, this model heralded a new technological era at the Czech car manufacturer. ŠKODA invested heavily in modern production facilities for the new series and soon concentrated fully on the production of this newcomer due to the sales success of the rear engine saloon in export markets. For this reason, ŠKODA discontinued production of the FELICIA convertible. However, demand for sports models remained strong, particularly in Western European markets. ŠKODA responded to its customers’ wishes with a vehicle that would give the brand an image boost despite remaining a niche product in terms of the planned number of units. While the development of the ŠKODA 100/110 L series was underway (the successor to the 1000 MB that received body upgrades, front disc brakes and improved safety equipment), work began on the two-door coupé version ŠKODA 110 R.

Article source: www.skoda-auto.com


ŠKODA AUTO has manufactured its 13 millionth transmission from the current generation. At present, the Czech carmaker makes MQ/SQ100 and MQ200 gearboxes for Volkswagen Group at its main plant in Mladá Boleslav, whilst the DQ200 direct-shift transmission is built at the Vrchlabí factory. These are fitted in various ŠKODA models as well as vehicles made by other Volkswagen Group brands. 

Michael Oeljeklaus, ŠKODA AUTO Board Member for Production and Logistics, stressed, “Today we have reached the impressive mark of 13 million current-generation gearboxes built. This production milestone is the result of our team’s high level of expertise and formidable team spirit. Due to these strengths, ŠKODA AUTO’s component production has continuously gained in strategic importance and developed into a key pillar of the group’s cross-brand production network.” 

Christian Bleiel, Head of Component Production at ŠKODA AUTO, added, “Our Mladá Boleslav and Vrchlabí plants are among the most modern and efficient production sites in the entire automotive industry. Our gearboxes meet the highest quality requirements. Manufacturing these transmissions using our complex, high-tech equipment requires many years of experience and a high level of skill from the team. Through innovation, continuous optimisation, automation and – most importantly –digitalisation, we are resolutely developing component production at ŠKODA.” 

At present, ŠKODA AUTO makes a total of three types of gearboxes, which are used in ŠKODAs and other Volkswagen Group cars. At its main plant in Mladá Boleslav, ŠKODA has been manufacturing the MQ200 five-speed transmission for vehicles with a 1.0- to 1.6-litre petrol engine since 2000; since 2011, the MQ200 has also existed as a six-speed gearbox. More than 7,590,000 of this transmission type have been built to date since their manufacturing began in 2000. The daily production volume currently amounts to 2,000 gearboxes. 

The MQ100/SQ100 transmissions built in Mladá Boleslav since 2011 were originally designed for ‘New Small Family’ models from Volkswagen Group and were initially fitted in the ŠKODA CITIGO, the VW up! and the Seat Mii. With the exception of the VW up!, these models are now exclusively available with an all-electric powertrain and as a result, the gearboxes are now mainly used in the ŠKODA FABIA and other small Volkswagen Group cars powered by a 1.0-litre petrol engine. In August 2020, the two millionth MQ100/SQ100 transmission left the factory in Mladá Boleslav. 

Since 2012, ŠKODA has also been building the DQ200 automatic 7-speed direct-shift gearbox (DSG) at its component plant in Vrchlabí. At a rate of 2,300 units per day, more than 3,300,000 DQ200s have already been manufactured to date. This transmission is also installed in ŠKODAs as well as cars made by other Group brands. 

In 2019 alone, ŠKODA AUTO built approximately 1,125,200 transmissions; the average daily production volume across all models was around 4,800 units.

Article source: www.skoda-auto.com

Following its official presentation, the ŠKODA SLAVIA held up to the scrutiny of Jan Kopecký, the fastest ŠKODA team member. The ŠKODA Motorsport factory driver and 2018 WRC2 World Champion, accompanied by his new co-driver, Jan Hloušek, went to the Bělá pod Bezdězem racetrack to put the seventh ŠKODA Student Car through its paces. The two rally pros also took the sporty ŠKODA 1100 OHC prototype from 1957 for a spin. This was the car that inspired the 31 students from the ŠKODA vocational school to transform a ŠKODA SCALA into the dynamic SLAVIA spider. 125 years on from the founding of the company, the name SLAVIA pays homage to the first bicycles produced by its two founders, Václav Laurin and Václav Klement. 

Jan Kopecký, ŠKODA Motorsport’s factory driver, commented, “The apprentices of the ŠKODA vocational school have done a great job again this year, presenting an impressive student car with the ŠKODA SLAVIA. It has breathtaking lines, shows a passion for detail in all areas, while the quality of workmanship is exceptional, given that this car was built entirely by hand. Thanks to its torsionally stiff body, the SLAVIA delivers a very sporty drive and evokes similar emotions to the car that inspired it, the ŠKODA 1100 OHC.

This outing in Bělá pod Bezdězem was special even for the professional race driver, Jan Kopecký. Together with his new co-driver, Jan Hloušek, the ŠKODA Motorsport factory driver tested the new ŠKODA SLAVIA, the seventh ŠKODA Student Car, and was also given the opportunity to drive a few laps in the ŠKODA 1100 OHC. It was this sports car prototype from 1957 that inspired the 31 participants in the Student Car project to transform a ŠKODA SCALA into a sporty spider. It is still fascinating today to experience the kind of sporty potential this prototype from over 60 years ago offered in its time.”

Jan Kopecký has been driving for ŠKODA Motorsport on rally tracks all over the world since 2009. The 38-year-old Czech was the 2013 European Champion, 2014 Asia Pacific Champion and the 2018 season’s World Champion in the WRC2 category. He has also won the Czech national championships for seven times. Since the start of this season, Jan Kopecký has been racing his ŠKODA FABIA Rally2 evo alongside his new co-driver, Jan Hloušek, who was also in the shotgun seat during the test laps with the ŠKODA SLAVIA and the ŠKODA 1100 OHC in Bělá pod Bezdězem.

ŠKODA 1100 OHC – a milestone in ŠKODA Motorsport history

The ŠKODA 1100 OHC sports prototype served as an important source of inspiration for the 31 students involved in the 2020 Student Car project. The two-seater race car presented in 1957, of which only two open-top examples were ever built, followed by three coupés later on, is a milestone in ŠKODA’s 119-year motorsport history as well as an impressive demonstration of the engineers’ skills at that time. Designed for long-distance races, the vehicle was based on a lightweight tubular frame welded from thin-walled tubes and featured a low, aerodynamically optimised body made of glass fibre reinforced plastic, resulting in an overall weight of just 550 kilograms. Its 1.1-litre four-cylinder engine producing 92 hp enables a top speed of 190 to 200 km/h, depending on the axle ratio – a level of sports car performance that continues to impress people like racing pro Jan Kopecký to this day.

Jan Hloušek, co-driver at ŠKODA Motorsport, emphasises, “For me, this day was like a fast rewind through more than six decades of ŠKODA history. To take a pure-bred ŠKODA race car from 1957 on a track used to fine-tune many of the brand’s successful rally cars was especially exciting for me, as a ŠKODA newcomer. The ŠKODA SLAVIA attests to the high level of education at the ŠKODA Vocational School and demonstrates the impressive knowledge of the apprentices. In this respect, the ŠKODA SLAVIA offers a foretaste of the future work of the experts of tomorrow and therefore the company’s future.”

Longstanding ŠKODA tradition in Bělá pod Bezdězem 

The Czech brand has been fine-tuning its successful rally cars for around 30 years in the Bohemian forests on the Motorland race, rallycross and test track at Bělá pod Bezdězem. This tradition began with the rally version of the ŠKODA FAVORIT, which won its class four times in the legendary Monte Carlo Rally in the 1990s. ŠKODA Motorsport also tested the ŠKODA FABIA Rally2 in Bělá pod Bezdězem, and the ŠKODA FABIA Rally2 evo was even presented there in 2019.

Article source: www.skoda-auto.com

The measures to contain the coronavirus pandemic also had a negative impact on ŠKODA AUTO’s vehicle deliveries and financial indicators in the first half of 2020. The ŠKODA AUTO Group’s sales revenue was €7.55 billion in the first six months, but the operating profit still amounted to €228 million – despite the 39-day shutdown of the Czech plants and the disruption to the sales channels, particularly in April. Against this background, the return on sales stood at 3.0%. ŠKODA AUTO delivered a total of 426,700 vehicles to customers from January to June. Since June, the Czech automobile manufacturer has been experiencing the positive effects of its restart programmes, which have been adapted to each market, and incoming orders have recently exceeded last year’s level. Provided the COVID-19 situation does not deteriorate significantly again, ŠKODA AUTO expects the conditions on the world markets to stabilise gradually over the coming weeks and months. Investments in tangible assets remained at a high level of 261 million euros over the past six months; ŠKODA AUTO continues to invest consistently in the company’s future and development. 

ŠKODA AUTO CEO Bernhard Maier explains: “ŠKODA AUTO has performed well in recent years and has a solid financial foundation. In response to the current exceptional situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, we immediately implemented comprehensive measures to stabilise sales, sales revenue and operating profit. These measures are already proving effective and we will consistently continue along this path in the months ahead. I am convinced, that ŠKODA will emerge from this situation even stronger.”

Klaus-Dieter Schürmann, ŠKODA AUTO Board Member for Finance and IT, adds: “Our goal is to continuously improve on the current level through to the end of the year. To achieve this, we are consistently pursuing our ongoing performance programme. The same applies to our recently introduced short-term special measures focusing on overheads and material costs as well as optimising expenses and current assets. ”

Despite the 39-day shutdown of its Czech plants and the economic impact of the measures to contain the COVID 19 pandemic, ŠKODA AUTO posted an operating profit of 228 million euros. At the end of April, the car manufacturer gradually ramped up vehicle production again as planned, observing the necessary health protection measures. As the car dealerships in the European markets have reopened, customer demand for vehicles has noticeably increased. At the same time, the sales channels have been largely restored and are functioning smoothly.

Alain Favey, ŠKODA AUTO Board Member for Sales and Marketing, explains: “Although our worldwide deliveries to customers decreased in the first six months of the year due to the exceptional starting position, the outlook is positive: in June we were able to make significant gains compared to the previous months. We are particularly well positioned with our attractive, modern model portfolio. In order to support the positive developments on the international markets, ŠKODA has introduced comprehensive restart programmes for its trade partners alongside the government support measures, which we warmly welcome. Against this background, we expect a recovery in the third quarter and anticipate a return to the previous year’s level in the fourth quarter.”

The company remains committed to its medium and long-term goals and is consistently rolling out the largest model campaign in its history. The manufacturer plans to launch 30 new models, derivatives, product upgrades or variants between 2019 and the end of 2022. Also, with the all-electric ENYAQ iV, it is taking a major step forward in implementing its electric mobility strategy – the SUV is ŠKODA’s first electric vehicle to be developed as such from the outset. The most important ŠKODA model in 2020 will be presented to the public for the first time in September.

Article source: www.skoda-auto.com

ŠKODA will be presenting its first all-electric SUV in Prague on 1 September 2020. The model marks the beginning of a new era for the Czech car manufacturer, which is why the brand is also taking another step forward in design with the ENYAQ iV. Emotive lines and balanced, dynamic proportions are combined in the first ŠKODA based on the Volkswagen Group’s modular electrification toolkit (MEB), which offers a generous interior and a sustainable yet fun driving experience. 

The silhouette of the new ŠKODA ENYAQ iV gives an idea of the proportions of the brand’s new flagship. A short front section and an elongated roofline create a dynamic exterior while at the same time offering a generous amount of space typical of the brand. The new SUV has a similarly spacious interior as the ŠKODA KODIAQ, despite being shorter in length than a ŠKODA OCTAVIA.

The ENYAQ iV is available with a choice of rear-wheel or four-wheel drive, three battery sizes and five power levels. The ENYAQ iV can be charged quickly, with a maximum capacity of 125 kW. It has a range of up to 500 kilometres in the WLTP cycle, making this practical, fully battery-powered SUV the perfect companion for everyday driving.

Emotive, efficient, electrifying: the new ŠKODA ENYAQ iV marks a pioneering step forward in the Czech carmaker’s electromobility strategy. The first ŠKODA production model based on Volkswagen Group’s MEB modular electric car platform combines brand-typical virtues such as a generous amount of space and an emotive design with fun yet sustainable driving. There is a choice of three battery sizes and five power variants, depending on requirements. The all-electric SUV is set to be built at ŠKODA’s main plant in Mladá Boleslav, making it the first MEB-based Volkswagen Group vehicle in Europe to be produced outside Germany.

Article source: www.skoda-auto.com