Skoda ’09 sales in China hit record 100,000 units image

German auto giant Volkswagen on Thursday said it had sold more than 100,000 Skoda vehicles in China this year to date, passing the landmark for the first time and setting a new record in the rapidly expanding Chinese auto market, Earthtimes reported.

Skoda cars, locally made by Shanghai VW, saw this year’s direct sales passed the 100,000 mark on Wednesday after reaching 95,677 by the end of October, up 93% year-on-year. Skoda’s China sales soared from 27,112 in the second half of 2007 to 59,284 in the whole of 2008 and 100,000 so far this year.

“There are two elements supporting this event to happen this year,” said Skoda China president Alfred Rieck, who is also executive vice president of Volkswagen Group China.

“First of all, we have an incredible market growth boosting the figures of the entire industry,” he said in a statement. “But secondly, and that is the more important element for us, Skoda is having a very high customer acceptance,” Rieck said.

Rieck pointed out that the sales record was reached despite Skoda still not having a full dealer network in China, which he said it needs to develop to “cover the country in such a way that our brand will be close to the customer.”

With three popular models – the Superb Haorui, Octavia Mingrui and Fabia Jingrui – Skoda has covered the A0, A, B car segments in China. Its first “strategic model,” the Octavia, sold 160,000 units over the past two years.