CZECH REPUBLIC: Unique MQB platform for Škoda Fabia
A new Fabia at Mladá Boleslav: this was the one millionth car built by Škoda in 2014: a new record
The new generation Fabia hatchback and Combi are based upon a bespoke version of the Volkswagen Group's MQB architecture, according to Škoda. This was announced on the recent UK media preview of the car.
Jonathan Harris, product manager for small cars with Škoda UK, said the cars' architecture "draws on MQB elements" but is not identical to other versions of this matrix of modules. Instead, it uses certain updated components from the second generation model's platform.
The Czech company also employs a similar engineering philosophy for some of its other models, the Octavia and Rapid being two examples. The thinking behind this is to keep not only R&D costs down but also to minimise spending at the several plants which make these models in multiple countries, such as the Czech Republic and China. The Volkswagen Group ceased building the second generation model at its Chakan plant near Pune in 2013 due to low sales, so the new one is not expected to be made in India.
Mladá Boleslav is the lead plant for production of the third generation Fabia. Build of the hatchback got underway last August on Line M1, with RHD cars for relevant markets having been added in December. The Octavia and Rapid are built on Line M13 at the same plant. Production of the Combi (wagon/estate) was added in December, with LHD European markets now receiving this body style. The estate is due in UK showrooms from March. Other plants to build or assemble the third generation car should be as follows:
- Anting (SVW, Shanghai)
- Solomonovo (Ukraine)
- Sarajevo (Bosnia)
- Kaluga (Russia)