In the first half of this year, Škoda Auto’s sales fell by 31.3 percent year on year to 426,700 vehicles. This was announced by the parent company Volkswagen.
The car market has been hit hard by the coronavirus crisis this year. In June, however, Škoda Auto’s sales fell by only 16 percent year on year to 94,600 vehicles after falling by more than 45 percent in May.
The entire Volkswagen Group delivered 3.893 million cars to customers in the first half of the year. Its sales thus decreased by 27.4 percent year on year. In June alone, the Group’s sales fell by 17.5 percent year on year to 804,100 vehicles, while in May it fell by about a third.
The coronavirus crisis has had a negative impact on demand and manufacturing activities in the automotive sector. At the end of April, Škoda Auto resumed production at its plants in Mladá Boleslav, Kvasiny and Vrchlabí. The shutdown due to the coronavirus pandemic lasted almost six weeks.
Škoda Auto also manufactures in China, Russia, Slovakia, Algeria and India, mostly through group partnerships, as well as in Ukraine and Kazakhstan in cooperation with local partners. It operates in more than 100 markets.
Last year, the company delivered 1.24 million cars worldwide and has almost 39,000 employees, of which almost 34,000 people in the Czech Republic. Škoda is the best-selling brand on the Czech market, where its share is close to 40 percent.
This month, Škoda Auto announced that the Chairman of the Board of Directors, Bernhard Maier, is leaving the head of the company after less than five years. His successor will be elected by the board in August.
The company did not state the reasons for Maier’s departure. According to the German newspaper Handelsblatt, power disputes in the Volkswagen Group are in the background. For a long time, there have been reports in the media that Volkswagen is bothered by the success of Škoda, whose models compete with other cars of the group beyond expectations.
In addition to Škoda, the Volkswagen Group also includes a number of other brands. In addition to the VW flagship, they are, for example, Audi, Porsche, Seat, Bentley or Lamborghini.