The 750,000th Škoda Octavia came down the assembly line in the Škoda Auto plant in Mladá Boleslav today, Friday, 30 August 2002, at 11 am. The anniversary car was a diamond silver Škoda Octavia Ambiente equipped with a 1.9 TDI turbodiesel engine, delivering 90bhp and 54mpg combined fuel consumption, destined for a customer from the Czech Republic.
The Škoda Octavia was introduced to the public for the first time at the Paris Motor Show in the autumn of 1996. Production began shortly afterwards in a purpose built factory in Mladá Boleslav, in the Czech Republic; the factory is still considered to be one of the most up-to-date vehicle plants in Europe. The Octavia Estate was presented a year later at the International Motor Show in Frankfurt (IAA). In 1999, the Octavia Estate 4x4 model was launched – the first four-wheel drive Škoda in the modern history of the company; a hatch version of this model is also available. The range was completed by the sporty Octavia vRS model, which was introduced to the public for the first time in 2000.
When it was launched, the Škoda Octavia became a symbol of the extraordinary regeneration of the whole Škoda enterprise. The Octavia’s modern construction, timeless design, reliability, high build quality and low running costs have made it popular throughout Europe and have contributed to the many accolades. These include being named "The Best Estate Car of the Year" by Auto Express in 2000. Recent crash tests carried out by the independent association EuroNCAP in the autumn of 2001 resulted in the Škoda Octavia being awarded four stars – which was the highest result in its class.
Out of the 750,000 Škoda Octavia cars produced so far, there have been 500,000 hatch-backs and 250,000 estates. The UK market has accounted for over 38,000 of these Octavia sales since the UK launch in 1998, with 9,902 being sold to date in 2002.
Mary Newcombe, Head of Škoda Marketing, commented ‘This is a fantastic milestone for the Octavia, which has continued to surprise and delight our customers since its UK launch in 1998. The Octavia marked a turning point for Škoda. Not only has it contributed greatly to the restoration of the brand and the revitalised image, it paved the way for the acclaimed Fabia and, most recently, the new Škoda Superb. We are delighted that more and more customers are discovering that they can find exceptional value, high levels of safety, class-leading comfort and award winning customer service in just one package – a car from Škoda."Published 30 August 2002