Having secured statutory approvals, the ŠKODA AUTO led Volkswagen Group India has announced the merger of its three passenger car subsidiaries — Volkswagen India Private Limited (VWIPL), Volkswagen Group Sales India Private Limited (NSC), and ŠKODA AUTO India Private Limited (SAIPL).

The merger is a key milestone in the company’s ‘INDIA 2.0’ project and the new entity will be called ‘ŠKODA AUTO Volkswagen India Private Limited’ (SAVWIPL).

The entity will be led by Gurpratap Boparai as its Managing Director and will be headquartered in Pune. It will operate two production facilities — one each in Pune and Aurangabad — and have regional offices in Mumbai, New Delhi, and other cities in the country.

Talking about the development and its strategic direction underpinning the initiative, Bernhard Maier, ŠKODA AUTO CEO, said: “The operational launch of ŠKODA AUTO Volkswagen India Private Limited marks an important milestone in the INDIA 2.0 project. This merger creates one of the key prerequisites for working together more efficiently at all levels and achieving our long-term goal: to gain significant market shares for Volkswagen and ŠKODA by 2025. We will now proceed in a series of quick steps: As early as next year, we will be presenting a specific outlook for our INDIA 2.0 model portfolio at the Auto Expo in Delhi.”

The entity with its strong brand portfolio — ŠKODA AUTO, Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche, and Lamborghini — is expected to drive a shared vision and market dominance strategy in India. However, the individual brands, including the iconic Porsche and Lamborghini, will continue to retain their identities, dealer networks, and customer experience initiatives.

Referring to the merger, Managing Director Boparai, said: “With this merger, we plan to combine the technology and management expertise of our team in India and realize our true potential in a challenging, competitive environment. We want to further strengthen our presence in India, ensure the professional development of our employees and safeguard sustainable profitability for our dealers.”

It was in July 2018 that the Volkswagen Group had announced investments of close to one billion euros for their ‘INDIA 2.0’ project. Following this, in January 2019, the group opened a new technology in Pune — the hub where vehicles will be built based on the indigenised MQB-A0-IN subcompact platform.

The pilot project will have ŠKODA AUTO Volkswagen India Private Limited launching a mid-size SUV model which will be made available from both ŠKODA and Volkswagen.