Automobile manufacturer ŠKODA set a new sales record in the first half of 2012 as worldwide deliveries to customers increased by 8.4 per cent to more than 493,000 units from January through June (1st half of 2011: 454,700).
At the same time, the brand posted its best ever deliveries figure for June at 87,400 cars (June 2011: 81,300) and its second-best monthly figure ever. The brand outpaced the market in June 2012 and in the first half of 2012 in almost all sales regions.
“ŠKODA has continued on its growth course in the first half of the year despite an increasingly difficult business climate,” said ŠKODA CEO Winfried Vahland. “We outperformed the market in almost all sales regions, thus improving our favourable position. The second half of the year, however, will not be easy. We are closely watching the markets, and we think there will be a significantly stronger headwind.”
Vahland added: “Our model offensive has started at just the right time. The ŠKODA Rapid, our new compact saloon which will be launched in Europe in autumn of 2012, will play an important role in this connection.”
ŠKODA made a strong showing in the markets in Western Europe, some of them marked by significant decline. As early forecasts showed the overall market shrank by almost five per cent in June, ŠKODA slightly increased sales by 1.2 per cent to 35,600 units (June 2011: 35,100). The largest increases in June were in the markets of Switzerland (up 31.7 per cent), Austria (15.5 per cent), Germany (10.5 per cent) and Great Britain (9.8 per cent). In Switzerland, sales grew to almost 1,900 units, setting a new monthly sales record, while market share grew to around 5.6 per cent in six months. In Germany, Europe’s largest market, ŠKODA sold over 14,600 cars in June 2012. At 11,600 and 10,700 units sold respectively, the ŠKODA Octavia and the ŠKODA Fabia were the most popular models in Western Europe. For the first half of 2012, ŠKODA’s sales in Western Europe, at around 195,400 units, were down only slightly, retreating by 0.7 year on year. However, as preliminary forecasts said the overall market in Western Europe was down by 7.5 per cent in the same period, ŠKODA’s market share increased to more than three per cent.
At 21.2 per cent, ŠKODA posted strong double-digit growth in Eastern Europe in June 2012. The brand sold almost 12,600 cars as against around 10,400 in June of last year. Russia retained its rank as the region’s strongest market, with ŠKODA deliveries there rising 36 per cent to a new monthly high of almost 9,600. ŠKODA’s growth was almost triple that of the overall market, which grew an estimated 13.7 per cent. Around half of the brand’s sales involved the ŠKODA Octavia, which posted 19.3 per cent growth at more than 4,500 units. Deliveries of the ŠKODA Yeti in Russia increased by more than 180 per cent, topping 1,900. The Superb also benefited from rising popularity with customers in Russia, deliveries shooting up 173.3 per cent. In the first half of 2012 ŠKODA grew by 31.1 per cent in Eastern Europe as deliveries topped 65,200 as against 49,700 ŠKODAs sold in the first half of 2011.
ŠKODA’s deliveries were also up in Eastern Central Europe in June, rising 2.7 per cent to almost 11,700 (June 2011: 11,400). This means that almost one car in five sold in Eastern Central Europe in June 2012 was a ŠKODA. The brand’s Eastern Central European deliveries in the first half of 2012 were up 4.6 year on year to more than 66,600 units (January through June 2011: 63,700). Deliveries to customers in the Czech Republic, the brand’s home market, were up 7.6 per cent to over 5,800 units (June 2011: 5,400). This means ŠKODA strongly bucked the trend as the overall market shrank by five per cent. ŠKODA’s share of the market in the Czech Republic reached 37.9 per cent in June 2012. The brand also grew in Slovenia (up 16.6 per cent) and Croatia (up 6.2 per cent). At more than 4,900 units delivered, the brand’s most popular model in Eastern Central Europe in June was the ŠKODA Octavia, followed by the ŠKODA Fabia at 3,300 and the ŠKODA Roomster at almost 1,100 units.
ŠKODA also continued on its growth course in China, the brand’s largest market. Deliveries to Chinese customers rose by 5.5 per cent to 20,100 (June 2011: 19,100) in June 2012. Total sales in the first half of 2012 were more than 120,700, up 7.6 per cent year on year (January through June 2012: 112,200). ŠKODA’s most popular model in China in June was the ŠKODA Octavia, as it had been, advancing by 20.3 per cent to almost 12,400 units delivered (June 2011: 10,300). The Superb sold almost 4,000 units in China, the Fabia around 3,800.
Sales advanced briskly in India, with ŠKODA posting a 39.3 per cent increase to just under 3,200, strongly outperforming the market which is estimated to have grown by 15.4 per cent. The brand also outperformed the market across the entire first half of the year as sales rose 40.1 per cent year on year, reaching a total of around 20,500 (January-June 2011: 14,600). The Rapid, the brand’s new compact saloon, which has been selling well in the local market as an Indian variant since late 2011, accounted for almost two thirds of ŠKODA’s sales in India. Overall, almost 2,000 customers took delivery of an Indian Rapid in June. Deliveries of the model totalled over 11,800 in the first half of 2012.
In the United Kingdom, it’s a record start for June YTD. Overall sales are up 3716 on 2012. Order Take is up 5721 over 2011 and Market share is up 0.24%. ŠKODA is also outperforming the market by 8.8% for retail, 19.2% for fleet and 13.9% market. Moreover, ’Simply Grow’ is smashing its forecast being 3174 above target.
ŠKODA also posted gains in other markets in June 2012 as sales rose 73.7 per cent to almost 1,300 units in Israel. Deliveries in Turkey were up 29.3 per cent, topping 800 units. In Australia, the brand advanced by 87 per cent to far more than 400 units sold.