Škoda Auto India began production of its much anticipated entry level sedan, the ŠKODA Rapid at its plant in Chakan, near Pune. The C-segment sedan, which is based on the Volkswagen Vento’s platform is the first car from the Škoda brand which has been designed, keeping in mind the special needs of Indian customers and will be exclusively manufactured in India. Estimated to be priced in the range of Rs. 7-9 lakh, it will be taking on Maruti Suzuki SX4, Hyundai Verna, Honda City, all-new Ford Fiesta, etc.
“Today is the official start of production for the Indian variant of our new Rapid compact saloon. Effective immediately, the first unit of the ŠKODA Rapid will be rolling off the line in this plant. The car will be introduced in the market shortly. It is an attractive car with lots of space and room for five persons.” Prof. Dr. Winfried Vahland, Chairman of the Board of Management, ŠKODA Auto a.s. commented.
Manufacturing of the all new Škoda Rapid will take place at the Chakan plant. The car will be offered with a choice of diesel and petrol engines. The commencement of production of Škoda Rapid is in line with Škoda Auto’s 2018 growth strategy which aims to double sales globally to at least 1.5 million units.
Commenting on the occasion, Dr. Chacko, Volkswagen Group Chief Representative India, President and Managing Director, Volkswagen India Private Limited, said “Škoda has always been an integral part of the plant in Chakan. The first car that was produced at this plant was a Škoda Fabia, and we are happy to roll-out the Škoda rapid on this occasion. i take this opportunity to congratulate the Volkswagen and Škoda teams for this success that has been achieved as a result of their synergies.”
Škoda Rapid will be entirely manufactured in India. It will be positioned at the entry level of the country's mid-sized sedan segment. With the introduction of the Škoda Rapid, Škoda will now offer cars to suit the needs of a larger customer base in India.
Expressing his gratitude to the employees on the occasion Prof. Dr. Winfried Vahland further said, “Škoda Rapid is a true reflection of our motto ‘Simply Clever’ with your work ladies and gentlemen, you will contribute to the new ŠKODA becoming a success in India. In this context, local sourcing and local production are essential. Our aim is to make cars of the highest quality. Your competence and know-how are what will make this happen”.
The Pune plant is a key element in Škoda Auto’s India strategy. The scale of investment, commissioning local suppliers and employing people primarily from the region itself demonstrate Škoda Auto’s commitment to India. Škoda is making an important contribution to the economic development in the region and also in the Indian economy in general.
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