Škoda has started series production of its all-electric Enyaq iV model based on MEB. Up to 350 units of the e-SUV will eventually be produced daily at Škoda’s main plant in Mladá Boleslav on the same lines as the Octavia and Karoq model series containing combustion engines.
The Enyaq iV is the first MEB-based electric car in the Volkswagen Group build outside of VW’s Zwickau plant in Germany. The ID.3 and ID.4 are currently being assembled there, with derivatives of the Audi Q4 e-tron and the Cupra el-Born to be added later. Other MEB plants in Europe are not scheduled to begin until 2022, such as Emden as the second plant for the ID.4, and the VW commercial vehicles plant in Hanover for the production version of the ID. Buzz.
Enyaq iV production at the Mladá Boleslav plant is remarkable in that the plant did not have an exclusively MEB-dedicated production line. The e-SUV is built on the same line as the Octavia (and its PHEV variants) and the Karoq. Škoda employees there use it to produce cars based with two different VW construction kits. According to the Czechs company, the conversion of the main plant cost a total of 32 million euros.
Michael Oeljeklaus, Škoda’s Board Member for Production and Logistics, said: “Today’s start of production of the Škoda Enyaq iV on the only production line in the Group for vehicles based on the MEB and MQB is a very special moment for our entire team.” He explained that “The Enyaq iV is Škoda’s first series-production model that was designed as an all-electric vehicle from the outset. This means our new SUV also places entirely different demands on manufacturing processes and production sequences than models with combustion engines.” He said that in order for this to be possible, the plant had to undergo extensive preparatory and conversion measures that have been underway since last summer.
During the reconstruction work, the building structure of the production hall even had to be adapted, while the parts logistics and the transport vehicles in the factory were adjusted accordingly. Thermal imaging cameras have been installed in the areas where work is being carried out on the batteries so that a heating battery can be immediately detected, whereby the security system triggers an alarm in the event of any kind of deviation.
The production lines were adapted so that in the future up to 350 units of the e-SUV can be built per day at Mladá Boleslav. To get a sense of this kind of production output, according to VW eMobility board member Thomas Ulbrich, production capacity at the Zwickau plant was 650 vehicles per day in mid-November by means of two MEB-dedicated lines. By the end of the year, the two lines at the Zwickau plant in combination should be able to produce a total of up to 750 vehicles per day.
Škoda presented the Enyaq iV at the beginning of September even before ID.4. Unlike Volkswagen, the Czech daughter company has opted for a wider range of battery and drive versions. In Germany, for example, prices start at 33,800 euros, the more powerful four-wheel-drive models and the basic model will not be available for order until later. The basic price for the Enyaq 60 iV is, therefore, initially 38,850 euros.