Skoda posted a 15-percent jump in global sales in March to a record 96,100 units, driven by strong demand for its Rapid, Yeti and Octavia models. The Czech carmaker is targeting to sell 1.5 million cars annually by 2018. In 2013, Skoda sold 939,200 cars, reflecting a 2-percent decline compared to results in 2012.
For the first three month of 2014, Skoda logged a 12-percent surge in sales to 247,200 vehicles, a new record for first-quarter deliveries. Skoda is penetrating further into China, turning the country into its largest national market.
The carmaker posted a 10-percent rise in deliveries In China in March. The brand is also pressing into other developing economies to offset a current slump in industrywide sales in Europe. Skoda’s growth plan is part of a goal of parent Volkswagen to surpass Toyota Motor Corp. and General Motors Co. as the largest carmaker in the world by 2018.
According to Skoda, it intends to launch a new or revised model every six months on average until 2016 to boost sales. Skoda posted a 143-percent rise in sales of its Rapid model in March, as well as a 45-percent jump in deliveries of the Yeti in the month.
The carmaker also logged an 11-percent surge in sales of new Octavia compact range, helping the Czech brand hike its sales in western European sales by 19 percent in March. Skoda posted an 11-percent and a 26-percent hike in sales in Germany and the United Kingdom, respectively. Skoda saw its sales in eastern Europe leap 4 percent in March, with Russian sales jumping 1 percent.