Skoda India's head Zac Hollis reveals the brand's long-term plan of launching a mass-market EV in the country.
Skoda India has recently launched a set of cars in India. Interestingly, none of them offers the option of a turbocharged diesel or a naturally aspirated petrol engine. They all source power from different turbocharged petrol motors. But downsized force-fed gasoline engine-propelled cars are not something that Skoda is considering as its long-term plan. The Czech carmaker’s long-term goal is to introduce a mass-market EV in the country. During the launch of Rapid TSI, Super facelift, and Karoq, Zac Hollis, Director – Sales, Service & Marketing, Skoda India confirmed the same.
Skoda reveals its long-term plan of launching a mass-market EV.
Zac said, “Long term, I would like to see a mass-market EV from Skoda, when we get there, I don't know. But that's the long term objective I would like to see – a mass-market EV". Skoda currently has only one EV on sale. It is the Citigoe iV and is sold in the European market only. It an A-segment car and would turn up an expensive option if launched in India.
The other EV that the brand is planning to launch sometime later this year is the production version of the Enyaq EV concept. Again, even this one fails to classify as a mass-market EV for the Indian market. Therefore Skoda will have to develop an India-specific EV from the ground up, which is unlikely to happen any time before 2022. However, we believe a stripped-down version of the Citigoe iV would still be a better option.
Rear profile of Skoda Citigoe iV.
Manufacturers across the globe are planning the transition from fossil-fueled cars to fully electric vehicles. However, there’s a big void in between the two, which they are successfully filling up with the plug-in hybrids. In Europe, Skoda has also followed this particular approach. But Zac added that in India, we might directly shift to EVs. “We did not think of bringing a hybrid into India,” Zac said. He also said that PHEVs are even expensive an option to launch in India, as there isn’t any incentivisation policy for the plug-in hybrid vehicles.