Skoda CEO Bernhard Maier has confirmed to the German media that the automaker will make a decision on the U.S. market next year.
Rumors of Skoda considering entering the North American market started picking up pace as the automaker began trademarking names in the U.S. The Czech automaker falls under the Volkswagen Group and has already filed patents for a dozen nameplates, including Superb, Octavia, Yeti, Spaceback, Rapid, Fabia and H-Tec. Earlier reports also say that Skoda has begun protecting its nameplates with the Canadian Intellectual Property Office.
It has been suggested that Skoda is under consideration for the North American market to bring a fresh brand and face for Volkswagen amid its massive dieselgate scandal. Speaking to German newspaper Handelsblatt, Maier said, “During the next year, we want to have the question of North America decided for us. When we talk about our plans until 2025, then you cannot leave out one of the most important car markets in the world,” he added.
Within the next 12 months, the Czech automaker will expand to Iran, Singapore and South Korea. It currently sells in 102 countries, but the goal by 2025 is to be in 120 different markets around the world.
The company just had its best first-half-year sales in its history, delivering 569,000 units through June, an increase of 4.6 percent compared to last year. Currently, the automaker has six model ranges in its lineup: Citigo minicar, Fabia hatchback and wagon, Rapid sedan and hatchback, Octavia sedan and wagon, Superb sedan and wagon and the Yeti compact crossover. It is expected to debut a larger crossover called the Kodiaq at this year’s Paris Motor Show while a successor to the Yeti as well as another crossover is currently under development.