Skoda will launch ‘City Car’, small saloon later this year

Article by Christian Andrei, on March 18, 2011

As part of Skoda’s strategy to achieve its goal of doubling annual sales to 1.5 million units by 2018, it is launching the ‘City Car’, its version of the Volkswagen Up city car, later this year. Skoda will also offer a new small saloon that will be slotted in between the Fabia and Octavia and is targeted at developing markets.

Skoda’s chairman Winfried Krause confirmed these new models during its annual press conference. He said that the City Car was created to meet the strong demand for small cars with low fuel consumption and affordable running costs.

He added that the company is anticipating a “new sales potential in Europe.” The styling of these new models is influenced by Skoda’s VisionD design Concept unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show.

Skoda also said that these models will keep to its ‘simply clever’ mantra, giving an “optimal offer of space and an outstanding price/value ratio” to practical vehicles. In 2010, Skoda sold 762,000 units -- its best ever sales figure. In the first two months of 2011, Skoda’s sales are already 25% higher year-on-year compared to the same period last year.

Skoda unveiled the latest of its product offensive and the seventh of its model line – the new Skoda Citigo small vehicle. With a length of just 3.56 meters, the new Citigo marks Skoda’s entry into the so-called small vehicle segment (A00).

With a width of just 1.65 meters and height of just 1.48 meters, the new Skoda Citigo is considered as one of the smallest vehicles in its segment. Skoda is planning to introduce the new Citigo first in the Czech Republic before the end of 2011, and then in other countries in Europe at the start of summer 2012. This city car from Skoda will be offered first as a three-door, and then as a five-door version in 2012.

Skoda is targeting the new Citigo city car towards young drivers and young families with small kids wanting a second or third car. The Czech carmaker is also targeting the Citigo towards the so-called 'best agers' -- cost-sensitive customers who have a rational approach to cars but have high demands in terms of design, quality and safety. Depending on market demands, customers could pick up from any of the four available trims: Easy, Active, Ambition and Elegance.

While it features a number of elements typically found in Skoda’s vehicles – like the finned grille set in a chrome-plated frame as well as precisely shaped headlamps -- the new Citigo boasts of a distinct appearance that makes it undeniably the new Skoda. Skoda Board Chairman Winfried Vahland remarked that the Citigo is one of the pillars of the carmaker’s growth strategy as it opens tremendous opportunities in a new segment.

He described the Citigo as a 'Simply Clever' car, primarily because even though it has a small size, the vehicle offers ample interior space, and it is fuel efficient while agile. He added that the Citigo city car is an attractive choice that offers many clever ideas. He noted that the new Skoda Citigo is the brand’s response to the growing demand for affordable small cars that consume less fuel and feature reasonable operating costs. Vahland expressed confidence that the new Skoda Citigo will attract prospects mainly in the brand’s markets in Europe.

Topics: skoda, skoda citigo

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