Gurpratap Boparai: "In India, we will offer top-class products at prices that amount to a paradigm shift in the automotive industry."

Gurpratap Boparai: "In India, we will offer top-class products at prices that amount to a paradigm shift in the automotive industry."

VW Group is investing EUR1bn in a project led by Skoda to develop new models for the Indian car market and potentially for export. It says Skoda and Volkswagen will develop new models in the A0 sub-compact segment for the Indian market. The first model to appear as part of the project will be an A0 SUV – to be showcased in 2020 and Skoda says the project is scheduled to run from 2019 through 2021.

Technical development of new products will predominantly take place in India to ensure closest proximity to the market, but vehicles could also be exported in the second phase of the plan.

Skoda CEO Bernhard Maier said: "Experts predict that in the next few years India is going to become the third-largest automotive market worldwide. With our 'INDIA 2.0' project we are now creating the right conditions for sustainable growth there. Our objective is ambitious, but achievable: together with the Volkswagen brand, we are seeking a market share of up to five per cent in the long term, depending on market and segment development."

Gurpratap Boparai, Managing Director of Skoda's India unit said: "With the 'INDIA 2.0' project, Skoad and Volkswagen Group are in an excellent position to optimally confront the dynamics of the Indian car market. In India, we will offer top-class products at prices that amount to a paradigm shift in the automotive industry. We will manufacture the new products locally based on the heavily localised MQB A0 platform, which already fulfils the stricter emission and safety standards that are expected to come into force in India in 2020."

Initially, Skoda will develop the sub-compact MQB A0 platform with a focus on India (MQB-A0-IN). In the second phase, Skoda will be assessing the possibility of exporting vehicles manufactured in India. Skoda and Volkswagen will develop several products based on this platform. The model campaign will begin in 2020 with an SUV.

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