Bratislava, Slovakia – Czech car-maker Škoda Auto has launched the production of its first all-electric vehicle in Volkswagen’s plant in Bratislava, the company announced in a press release.
Škoda’s first battery-powered car model, the Citigo iV, rolled off the assembly line last week as the iconic Czech company intensifies its efforts to electrify its model range.
The Citigo iV, a five-door city speedster designed mostly for driving in cities and urban environments, has a real-life range of up to 260 km, according to the company.
Škoda board member Michael Oeljeklaus called it an important “milestone in the history” of the brand, part of the German Volkswagen Group since the early 1990’s: “It is our brand’s first all-electric model with many practical advantages as well as high manufacturing quality”.
When the car model was first presented in May, Škoda anticipated a start of production in the second half of 2019 and the first deliveries to begin early next year.
The historic car-maker from Mlada Boleslav isn’t the only manufacturer eyeing the possible benefits of producing all-electric vehicles in the region, with Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk also expressing interest in launching its cars in Slovakia, while being already present in neighbouring Czech Republic.
This start of the Citigo iV’s series production is only the first step of Škoda’s wider strategy to transition to zero and low-emission vehicles in a few years time. “Škoda’s future will be electric”, CEO Bernhard Maier said earlier this year. “By 2025, we plan to offer five purely electrically powered models in various segments”.
Last month, Škoda Auto, the Czech Republic’s biggest private employer with an annual production of 1.3 million vehicles worldwide, was named the most sustainable company in the Czech Republic.