ŠKODA and Volkswagen Group India inaugurate the new Technology Center in Pune under the ŠKODA led ‘INDIA 2.0’ project

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Mumbai/Pune, 19 January 2019 – ŠKODA and Volkswagen Group India have today inaugurated a new Technology Center in Pune, India. The opening ceremony was attended by Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš and other government officials. On behalf of the Volkswagen Group, ŠKODA is leading the ‘INDIA 2.0’ project, which sets out the Volkswagen Group’s model campaign on the Indian market. At the new Technology Center, 250 engineers will be developing vehicles tailored to the needs of customers in the subcontinent. Products developed under the INDIA 2.0 project will achieve up to 95% localisation.

Andrej Babiš, Prime Minister of the Czech Republic, and other members of his government travelled to Pune for the inauguration ceremony. The delegation was received by Christian Strube – Member of the Board of Management for Technical Development, ŠKODA AUTO a.s., and Bohdan Wojnar – Member of the Board of Management for Human Resources Management, ŠKODA AUTO a.s., as well as Gurpratap Boparai – Head Volkswagen Group India.

Andrej Babiš, Prime Minister of the Czech Republic, said at the opening ceremony: “I am delighted that ŠKODA AUTO is expanding its presence and involvement in India with such significant investments and promising projects. The fact that ŠKODA is creating great opportunities for the high potential market here in India demonstrates the long-term strategy of the brand.”

Christian Strube – Member of the Board for Technical Development, ŠKODA AUTO a.s. says: “By opening the Technology Center, we underline our determination to make the INDIA 2.0 project a success. India has excellent universities and highly qualified staff; this state-of-the-art facility will help us to unlock that huge potential – especially with regard to design and development. Local development is the key to success.”

The Technology Center in Chakan (Pune), represents the first major step in implementing the ‘INDIA 2.0’ project. The Volkswagen Group and ŠKODA AUTO are jointly investing around INR 2,000 crore (Euro 250 million) in research and development projects in India. The Indian engineers will be responsible for project management, electronics, infotainment, body design, interior, chassis and complete vehicle.

Gurpratap Boparai, Head – Volkswagen Group India, emphasizes: “The Technology Center will lay the foundation for the development of products that are specially designed for Indian market. We expect to roll out the first products, for both the ŠKODA as well Volkswagen brands, by 2020- 21; starting with a mid-sized SUV based on MQB A0 IN platform. A model campaign, led by ŠKODA, will follow. I am convinced that we can use all the strengths of ŠKODA to the great benefit of the entire Volkswagen Group.”

Approximately 250 engineers will be working at the new Technology Center. 95% of the vehicle components for the localized MQB A0 platform will be manufactured locally. The vehicles developed in India will meet the same core standards for safety, quality and design that the Volkswagen Group represents worldwide. At the same time, both ŠKODA and Volkswagen will be showcasing models with their own typical characteristics on the market.

In July 2018, the Volkswagen Group confirmed INR 7,900 crore (EUR 1 billion) investment in the ‘INDIA 2.0’ project, which will primarily be used in developing ŠKODA AUTO and Volkswagen vehicles for the Indian market. The first of these models will be a mid-size SUV in the A0 segment, which will be unveiled in 2020.