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Skoda Will Discontinue Citigo, Throttles Back Pickup Truck Development

Here’s an obvious bit of information regarding the automotive industry in 2017: crossovers rule. And as demand for utility vehicles based on passenger cars continues to grow, something has to give. Skoda, in turn, caught wind of the current state of affairs.
Skoda Citigo 11 photos
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An automaker that depends one hundred percent on synergies with daddy Volkswagen, Skoda decided to kill off the A-segment Citigo at the end of the first generation’s lifecycle. Speaking to Motoring, Skoda sales general manager Peter Solc put it pretty straightforward.

“So we have to evaluate what will bring Skoda globally the biggest return on investment. What we see as the biggest opportunity is to focus further on the SUV.”
The official further added: “One car that is not offered in Australia but is offered in the Skoda range in Europe will be discontinued because simply we see that the segments are going down.” Who could possibly blame the Czech carmaker, though?

Looking at the sales figures for the Citigo, which has been only recently facelifted, the writing was on the wall. With 40,700 units sold in 2016, the urban dweller lags behind the Yeti (95,600), Superb (139,100), Fabia (202,800), Rapid (212,800), and Octavia (436,300).

As for the Volkswagen Amarok-based pickup truck Skoda wants so badly in markets such as Australia, the company is still evaluating “the possibilities, the investments, and the return on investments.” Reading between the lines, higher-ups are not sure if it’s worth the trouble of bleeding cash on creating a new product based an existing product.

With the Citigo out of the picture for good and the workhorse currently on hold, it becomes clear yet again that the Volkswagen Group is still recovering from the aftermath of the Dieselgate fiasco. Investigations and legal problems are still on the roll, taking their toll on the automaker’s finances.

Given these circumstances, it’s wiser for Skoda (and Volkswagen's other volume brands) to be a cool-headed cookie instead of a spendthrift.

 
 
 
 
 

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