Series production of best-selling ŠKODA OCTAVIA began 20 years ago

12/09/2016
20 years ago, on 3 September 1996, former Czech President Vaclav Havel gave the starting signal for the production of the ŠKODA OCTAVIA in the newly opened part of the plant at the company's headquarters. This also marked the beginning of a unique success story: Over the following two decades, the ŠKODA OCTAVIA became a worldwide bestseller and is still the best selling model of the brand from Mladá Boleslav. The popular compact car paved the way for ŠKODA’s success.

In February 1995 in Mladá Boleslav, the foundation stone for the new production line was laid, on which the first ŠKODA OCTAVIAs would be produced around 18 months later. For the new series ŠKODA built a modern production line in a 32,000-square-meter hall. In addition, a total of 2,500 square meters of office space and 3,000 square meters of social areas were created. In March 1996, the new paint shop was completed, where up to 1,800 bodies of model series ŠKODA FELICIA and ŠKODA OCTAVIA would be painted every day.

On 3 September 1996, former President of the Czech Republic Václav Havel inaugurated the new plant and also officially gave the go-ahead for the series production of the ŠKODA OCTAVIA. “The plant is beautiful, modern, really pretty. It would be great if all factories looked like this.” – Havel’s words of praise at the opening ceremony.

The development of the completely new OCTAVIA model series began in 1992, approximately one year after the traditional Czech brand joined the Volkswagen Group. The ŠKODA OCTAVIA was based on a Group platform which was completely new at the time. The robust body structure, which had been developed using the latest CAD (Computer Aided Design) technology, provided exemplary active and passive safety in combination with front airbags for driver and passenger. In addition, this was the first time that ŠKODA had offered the then new side airbags for the OCTAVIA.

With the clever liftback solution, the new compact featured an especially practical highlight: Thanks to the large tailgate of the hatchback model, customers benefited from excellent access to the 528-litre boot, which could be extended to as much as 1,328 litres by folding the rear seats down.

In 1996 – the first sales year – ŠKODA OCTAVIA customers could choose from two four-cylinder petrol engines or a turbodiesel drivetrain. In May 1998, the ŠKODA OCTAVIA COMBI extended the model range; from 1999 the estate version was also available with all-wheel drive. The last vehicle from the first generation rolled off the production line in November 2010. Between September 1996 and November 2010 around 970,000 saloons and more than 470,000 estates were delivered.

The second-generation ŠKODA OCTAVIA seamlessly continued the success story of its predecessor: Between 2004 and 2013, 1.6 million customers opted for the saloon, 900,000 buyers chose the ŠKODA OCTAVIA estate. The third generation of the ŠKODA OCTAVIA has been in production since November 2012. Today the bestseller is considered the heart of the brand and is extremely popular both as a family car and as a company vehicle.

Since the start of production of the first generation on September 3, 1996, more than five million ŠKODA OCTAVIAs have left the production halls. In addition to the main plant in Mladá Boleslav the compact is also manufactured at the ŠKODA plants in China, India, Russia and Kazakhstan.

Scala Interior
A design sketch provides a first glimpse of the interior of the new ŠKODA SCALA. The new compact model will be the first ŠKODA to feature the latest infotainment generation with a free-standing display positioned high up, in the driver’s immediate field of vision. The optional Virtual Cockpit has the biggest display in its class. In addition to new interior trims and premium materials the SCALA also offers a generous amount of interior space, along with the largest luggage compartment in this segment, at 467 litres.
Scala
Following on from the first silhouette images, ŠKODA reveals the name of its new model – the ŠKODA SCALA. The name derives from the Latin word ‘SCALA’ which means ‘stairs’ and is a step forward for the Czech car manufacturer in the compact hatch segment. The SCALA is the first ŠKODA production model in Europe to carry the ŠKODA name in lettering across the centre of the tailgate and replaces the ŠKODA logo.
ŠKODA dials into the future with new Virtual Cockpit option
ŠKODA is introducing a new, fully programmable digital instrument panel to its KAROQ, OCTAVIA, SUPERB and KODIAQ ranges - giving the customers the option to replace traditional analogue dials and gauges with a high-definition electronic display for the first time.
ŠKODA AUTO continues on the road to success. From January to the end of September, the car manufacturer increased its worldwide deliveries to customers by 7.8% year-on-year to a new record of 939,100 vehicles. ŠKODA AUTO also achieved sales revenue of 12.6 billion euros, an increase of 2.1% and the best result in the company’s history. The operating profit of 1.1 billion euros remained high in the first three quarters, but was negatively influenced by high financial expenditures for new models, electromobility and higher personnel costs.
ŠKODA is releasing a silhouette picture to grant the public a first look at its future model for the popular compact class. It provides a first taste of the distinctive and dynamic design of this five-door model. This hatchback model translates the emotive design language of the study ŠKODA VISION RS, which recently attracted attention at the Paris Motor Show, into a production vehicle.

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Baking fever has once again gripped the nation – and ŠKODA UK is no exception. The car manufacturer has partnered with celebrity baker and 2016 Great British Bake Off winner Candice Brown to re-imagine a delicious, small-scale replica of the iconic Fabia cake. It comes more than a decade after ŠKODA’s advert, which saw a life-size version of the Fabia car made entirely out of cake.