Škoda has begun exporting its Kodiaq and Karoq models from the Czech Republic to Vietnam and has opened its first dealership in Hanoi.
The carmaker, which is part of the VW Group, said it projects a rapid expansion of the dealer network to as many as 30 partners, with annual sales of more than 40,000 units beyond 2030.
The cars are being delivered on ro-ro vessels, although the carmaker could not disclose which shipping line is managing the vessels. From Kvasiny, the vehicles make a two-day journey by rail to Bremerhaven port, and then travel for a month on the ro-ro vessels to Singapore port. From there, it is a two-week journey to Ho Chi Minh City and on to Hai Phòng.
The European-made models, the Karoq and Kodiaq, are being shipped to Vietnam as completely built units (CBUs), but other models will be assembled in Vietnam. The Kushaq and the Slavia models which Škoda is bringing to the Vietnamese market will be exported to Pune, India as completely-knocked-down (CKD) kits, before making their way on to Vietnam. Škoda’s newly inaugurated 16,000 sq m Parts Expedition Centre in Pune will serve as a packaging area for the CKDs and from there, the kits will be exported in containers to Vietnam for welding, painting and assembly. Construction of the production line in Quãng Ninh province in Vietnam is underway.
The carmaker said the vehicles exported are delivered as CKDs due to tariffs that would be applied if exported in one piece. Jiří Cee, head of logistics at Škoda said: “Therefore the process of packing the bodywork and parts and sending them to a plant located on the other side of the planet is a job for the Škoda logistics department.”
Škoda’s export route to India usually involves traversing the Suez Canal, but due to the situation in the Red Sea, the carmaker’s shipping has been rerouted. The carmaker told Automotive Logistics that it does not expect any significant production restrictions at its plants due to the disruption, but there may be slight delays to deliveries.
Lubor Šrámek, responsible for logistics of manufactured cars at Škoda, said: “The key transport challenge in our Vietnam project is coordinating the shipping chain involving a combination of road, rail and sea transport, with the emphasis on quality, costs and transport times.”
Škoda has partnered with TC Group for sales, local distribution and production of the vehicles in Vietnam.