The year 2022 is slated to be the biggest year for ŠKODA AUTO India ever since its entry into the Indian market in 2001. With a focused market strategy built around its consistent product launch campaigns, focus on enhancing the after sales and customer satisfaction drivers and increasing its network presence across the country, ŠKODA AUTO India plans to triple its annual sales volumes in 2022 and further build on the positive momentum created last year.
From 10,387 cars sold in 2020, ŠKODA AUTO India achieved a triple digit growth of 130% with 23,858 units sold in 2021. For 2022, ŠKODA AUTO India aims to triple the 2021 sales volumes, keeping the mid-term target of 1,00,000 units set for 2025. The growth in 2021 and the projection for 2022 is based on the successful implementation of the first leg of the India 2.0 project. A project that involved the development of the MQB A0 IN platform made specifically for India, that formed the base for the launch of the KUSHAQ.
With the start of the new year, ŠKODA AUTO India will be launching the new KODIAQ on January 10, the first of the 6 product actions planned for 2022. Continuing the charge will be the all-new SLAVIA sedan. Built on the same MQB A0 IN platform as the KUSHAQ, the SLAVIA will be the torchbearer of ŠKODA AUTO India’s 2022 calendar, alongside KUSHAQ. Providing further impetus to the product blitz will be enhancements across the product line-up, which include updates to the KUSHAQ, OCTAVIA and SUPERB.
Mr. Zac Hollis, Brand Director, ŠKODA AUTO India said, “I am very happy to share that 2021 has been a Year of Growth for ŠKODA Auto India. The growth is due to the team’s commitment and approach towards building a strong customer centric brand. Despite challenges of the pandemic and a global chip shortage, ŠKODA AUTO India stuck to its outlook and recorded a 130% growth in 2021. We will build on this strong momentum and focus on the diverse range of products, with constant product actions. At the same time, we look to set new standards of customer satisfaction and further enhance the after sales experience, continue with our network expansion and treble our sales volume. I am confident that these actions will establish ŠKODA AUTO India as a player of reckoning in 2022. At the onset of the new year, we are on track to achieve the goals we have set for ourselves, which positively reflects our commitment to India.”
New focus areas on the sales front:
In order to gear up for the aggressive sales volumes for 2022, the brand will build on new and existing avenues like its ‘Certified Pre-Owned’ brand, ‘Corporate Sales’ initiatives, increase penetration in rural markets and also continued focus on dealer manpower training, which is essential the business operations.
The plan is to activate the ‘Certified Pre-Owned’ brand across all outlets in 2022. There is already a high level of digitalization in the business process, and the 115 points vehicle evaluation is done by using the mobile app. On the ‘Corporate Sales’ front, the brand has already facilitated tie-ups with banks & financial institutes, and has recorded a 127% growth in 2021 over 2020. The objective is to further increase the corporate sales penetration to around 30% in 2022.
The brand is seeing a surge in the contribution from rural markets. From around 5% in 2020, the share of sales from rural markets grew to around 10% in 2021. With the rapid network expansion across the country, there will be further contribution from the rural markets in 2022.
All the actions on the sales front will mean that the brand will be amongst the top 10 markets for ŠKODA AUTO a.s. and also will be in the top 10 OEMs in India, which will be a tremendous feat.
Building on the Network Expansion:
One of the key pillars of the India 2.0 project was to substantially increase the network presence across the country. With over 175 touchpoints in 2021 the brand has already increased its presence by almost 50%. 2022 will see further actions on this front with the objective of growing from 175 to 225 touchpoints, which results in growth of more than 25%.
The increase in the service footprint will be an architect of this growth. The newly introduced Compact Workshop, which makes aftersales facilities accessible in all rural areas having a sales branch, will enable the brand to cater to more than 60 rural cities in India in 2022.
Enhancing the After-sales and Customer Centric actions:
One of the key areas of focus for the brand has been to keep building on its promise of customer satisfaction. On the after-sales front, the brand has already taken several measure towards enriching the customer experience with reduced cost of ownership. These include a 32% reduction in engine oil prices (gasoline engines) and up to 21% lower overall maintenance costs. The brand has also taken initiatives to have greater transparency with the service cost calculator, available on the website. In 2022, there will be efforts in increasing the trained skill force and improving service quality, introducing new aftersales programs (loyalty offerings) and building customer confidence through greater transparency. Initiatives like the Service Cam, mobile service vans and express service offerings will all help in augmenting the customer experience.
Also fuelling the growth are ŠKODA AUTO India’s customer innovations and campaigns. Like the introduction of an Artificial Intelligence ChatBot on the ŠKODA AUTO India website, WhatsApp and Facebook pages. It is AI that enhances the information and interactivity levels across platforms that people browse through in the car purchase decision. Besides, a slew of customer-centric initiatives like the ‘Peace of Mind’ campaign enabling lower cost of ownership, reduction in parts prices, accessibility of service centres and the digitalisation of the service process enveloped ŠKODA AUTO India’s customer activities.
Going into 2022, ŠKODA AUTO India aims to achieve a leadership position in customer centricity by its continuous implementation of trainings and programs across all customer touchpoints.
With major actions across its product range, sales strategy, network expansion, after-sales initiatives and focus on customer centricity, ŠKODA AUTO India has a firm strategy in place to make 2022 its biggest year in India.