Skoda mulls local assembly of New Octavia in India

“We are exploring the Octavia for India because this car must come back. This could exactly be up to Rs 30 lakh, where we currently have no offering, said Janeba.

By Saptarshi Mondal, Autocar India calendar 10 Jul 2024 Views icon4356 Views Share - Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to LinkedIn Share to Whatsapp
Skoda mulls local assembly of New Octavia in India

There has been quite some speculation about the return of the Skoda Octavia to India. We have reported that the fourth-gen Octavia facelift has been on the cards for India for a while now. More recently, speaking to our sister publication Autocar Professional, Skoda India brand director Petr Janeba has suggested that they are even looking to assemble the model here.

“We are exploring the Octavia for India because this car must come back. This could exactly be up to Rs 30 lakh, where we currently have no offering,” said Janeba.

He, however, hasn’t committed to a specific timeline for the model’s launch in India. Currently, Skoda assembles the Kodiaq here, whose next-gen model is due for entry in the second quarter of 2025.

Introducing the new Octavia will only be possible after that, as it typically takes 12-18 months to prepare a car for parts and components assembly. One also has to factor in various emissions and regulatory norms and extensive testing to meet those parameters.

“As a parts and components car, the Kodiak is already decided. It will come in between April and June next year. The next parts and components consideration is the Octavia,” said Janeba.

What’s more interesting is that Skoda isn’t only considering bringing in the regular Octavia but also its sportier RS version. Internationally, the Octavia is available with a range of 1.5-litre and 2.0-litre petrol engines and a 2.0-litre diesel mill. While the India-spec model will be petrol-only, the powertrain hasn’t been finalised yet. The Octavia RS, meanwhile, gets a 265hp, 2.0-litre turbo-petrol engine mated to a 7-speed DSG. The fourth-gen Octavia was updated with a midlife facelift in February this year.

Skoda currently sells the third-gen Superb in India as a full import in very limited numbers, and a similar strategy will be followed for the fourth-gen model, too. Theoretically, it could then make it to our market much sooner than the Octavia and even the Kodiaq.

“There is a new Superb coming, and the decision is that it will still be a CBU [completely built unit]. It will never be a parts and components assembly,” said Janeba. The reason is that the Bratislava factory, where the Superb is produced, can’t produce kits for a single right-hand drive market. “It’s too much of an investment, and it does not make any sense. It’s just one car for one market,” added Janeba.

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