Škoda Auto

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Škoda Auto
Private company
Founded1895 as Laurin & Klement
FounderVáclav Laurin and Václav Klement
Czech Republic
Number of locations
Factories in China, Czech Republic, India, Kazakhstan, Russia, Slovakia, Ukraine
Area served
Europe, Asia, South America, Australasia
Key people
Bernhard Mayer (Chairman of the Board of Directors), Dr Herbert Diees (Chairman of the Supervisory Board)
Production output
Increase875,000 units (2011)
ServicesAutomotive financial services
RevenueIncrease 16.559 billion (2017)[1]
Increase 1.611 billion (2017)[1]
Increase 1.274 billion (2017)[1]
Total assetsIncrease CZK 228.180 billion (2016)[2]
Increase (US$ 8.89 billion)
Total equityIncrease CZK 137.580 billion (2016)[2]
Increase (US$ 5.36 billion)
ParentVolkswagen Group

Škoda Auto (Czech pronunciation: [ˈʃkoda]  (Speaker Icon.svg listen)), better known as Škoda, is an automobile maker. It is based in the Czech Republic. Škoda was bought by the Volkswagen Group in 2000.[3] Its total sales reached 684,226 cars in 2009 and 85,000 for the month of March 2011.[4]

History[change | change source]

Škoda Auto is one of the largest car makers in Central Europe. In 2010, 762,500 cars were sold worldwide. This was a record for the company.

Škoda Works was started as a firearms maker in 1859.

Škoda Auto goes back to the early 1890s as a company which started out making bicycles. In 1894, 26-year old Václav Klement (a bookseller in Mladá Boleslav) could not find any spare parts to fix his bicycle. Klement returned his bicycle to the makers, Seidel and Naumann, with a letter. It was written in Czech. The letter asked the company to repair the bicycle. When Klement got his reply, it was in German. It said (in English): "If you would like an answer to your inquiry, you should try writing in a language we can understand". Klement was very unhappy at this. Even though he did not have any experience, he decided to start a bicycle repair shop. He and Václav Laurin opened this in 1895 in Mladá Boleslav. Before working with Klement, Laurin was a bicycle maker in the town of Turnov. Turnov was near to Mladá Boleslav. In 1898, after moving to their newly-built factory, the pair bought a Werner "motorcyclist".[nb 1] It was made by French manufacturer Werner Brothers. Laurin & Klement's first motorcyclette was powered by an engine on the handlebars. It drove the front wheels. It was dangerous and unreliable. Laurin had an accident on it, and lost one of his front teeth. To design a safer motorcycle, the pair wrote to German specialist Robert Bosch for advice. The pair's new motorcycle went on sale in 1899.

In 1900, when the company had 32 people working for them, motorcycles began being exported. 150 machines were shipped to London. Shortly after, the press said that they were the makers of the first motorcycle.[5] The first model, Voiturette A, was a success. The company was set up both within Austria-Hungary and all over the world. By 1905 the company was making automobiles.

The back of a Škoda Popular Special on display at the Sportauto Museum, Lány, Kladno District, Czech Republic

After World War I, the Laurin-Klement company began making trucks. However, in 1924, the company looked for a partner after running into problems. It was bought by Škoda Works, a firearms maker. Most things made later were under the Škoda name. Škoda was successful again after an economic depression. The Popular in the late 1930s is an example of a popular car.

During World War II, when Nazi Germany had invaded Czechoslovakia, the Škoda works was turned into part of Reichswerke Hermann Göring. It helped the German war effort.

Car models[change | change source]

This table shows the Škoda car models still being made.

Fabia Skoda Fabia IV IMG 5307.jpg 2021 (fourth generation)
Scala Skoda Scala IMG 2515.jpg 2018
Octavia Skoda Octavia IV liftback (cropped).jpg 2020 (4th generation)
Superb 2019 Skoda Superb SE L Executive TDi 2.0 Front.jpg 2015 (3rd generation)
Kamiq 2019 Skoda Kamiq SE L TSi 1.0 Front.jpg 2019
Karoq 2018 Skoda Karoq Edition TDi SCR 4X4 2.0 Front.jpg 2017
Kodiaq Skoda Kodiaq Vienna 19-20 IMG 2247.jpg 2016
Enyaq iV Skoda Enyaq iV 80 – f1 03052021 (colour corrected).jpg 2020

Concept cars[change | change source]

  • MissionL (2011)
  • Vision D (2011)
  • Vision S (2016)
  • Vision 7S (2022)
  • Fabia Super (2007)
  • Joyster (2006)
  • Yeti II (2006)
  • Roomster (2003)
  • Tudor (2002)
  • Fabia Paris Edition (2002)
  • Ahoj (2002)
  • Felicia Golden Prague (1998)
  • 783 Favorit Coupé (1987)
  • Škoda 110 Super Sport Ferat (1971)
  • Škoda 1100 GT (1968)
  • Škoda F3 (1964)
  • Škoda 1100 Type 968 (1958)
  • Škoda 973 Babeta (1949)

Gallery[change | change source]

Bibliography[change | change source]

  • Margolius, Ivan; Meisl, Charles (1992). Škoda Laurin & Klement. London: Osprey. ISBN 978-1-85532-237-0.

Notes[change | change source]

  1. More information about the Werner motor bicycles: Twycross, Tony (April 2005). "Auto Cycling, 1890s Style". The Moped Archive. Retrieved 13 August 2008.

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 ŠKODA Financial Results 2017 (Report). Mladá Boleslav, Czech Republic: ŠKODA AUTO a.s. 2018. Archived from the original on 11 January 2020. Retrieved 13 May 2018.
  2. 2.0 2.1 ŠKODA Annual Report 2016 (PDF) (Report). Mladá Boleslav, Czech Republic: ŠKODA AUTO a.s. 2017. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 March 2017. Retrieved 17 April 2017.
  3. "VW Group brands". Autozeitung.de. Archived from the original on June 5, 2010. Retrieved August 28, 2011.
  4. Crawford, Anthony (2011-04-09). "Skoda – more popular than ever". Reviews. Car Advice. Retrieved August 28, 2011.
  5. "Skoda Company History". carautoportal.com. Archived from the original on 21 December 2010. Retrieved 10 August 2009.

Other websites[change | change source]