SEAT presented its electric strategy today which, until the beginning of 2021, will include six electric and plug-in hybrid models.
The electric version of the Mii and el-Born will be the brand’s first two fully electric models, while the new generation Leon and the Tarraco will feature a plug-in hybrid version. Furthermore, the CUPRA Leon and the CUPRA Formentor will also have a plug-in hybrid variant. SEAT President Luca de Meo also announced today at the company’s annual media conference that the CUPRA Formentor, the new CUV that was unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show, will be built at the Martorell factory.
For the first time in the history of the company, SEAT will develop a new vehicle platform in collaboration with the Volkswagen brand, a smaller version of the Modular Electric Drive Toolkit (MEB) on which multiple vehicles of the size of around four metres in length by different brands, SEAT among them, will be made. The goal of the new platform is to develop affordable electric vehicles, with an entry level price below 20,000 euros. More than 300 highly skilled engineers will be participating in this project in Spain.
During the presentation of the results held at SEAT’s corporate headquarters in Martorell, company CEO Luca de Meo stated that “SEAT now has a clearer role in the Volkswagen Group, and thanks to the results obtained, we have earned the new electric vehicle platform.” “For the first time, the SEAT Technical Centre will be developing a platform that may be used by more brands around the globe”, added de Meo.
Volkswagen AG CEO Dr. Herbert Diess attended the presentation and emphasised SEAT’s role within the Volkswagen Group: “SEAT is playing a new role within the Volkswagen Group taking on even more responsibility. This year’s achievements underline SEAT’s potential to make use of growth opportunities and open new markets.” Dr. Diess added that “the small electric platform project is a great step towards an even more affordable electric mobility. SEAT will realize the first electric vehicle that is especially designed for urban journeys.”
The electric offensive reaches further than new models and also encompasses a micromobility strategy which, as announced by the CEO of SEAT during the Mobile World Congress, the company is going to lead for the Volkswagen Group. The recently unveiled SEAT Minimó concept vehicle plays a part in this strategy and the electric SEAT eXS kickscooter are two examples of urban micromobility solutions put forward by the company.
In 2018 SEAT obtained the best results in its history. Profit after tax went up to 294 million euros, 4.6% more than the previous year (281). Moreover, operating profit grew by 93.2% to stand at 223 million euros (2017: 116) and turnover amounted to 9.991 billion euros, which is 4.6% higher than the 2017 result (9.552). All amounts set new historic records. In the past five years, SEAT’s turnover has grown by 33%.
In addition, deliveries increased to the highest level in SEAT’s nearly seven decades of existence, and the figure of 517,600 vehicles sold (10.5% more than in 2017), made SEAT the fastest growing brand in Europe last year. Boosted by the Ateca and the Arona, selling models with a greater contribution margin helped the improvement of SEAT’s profit results. In its first year as an independent brand, CUPRA was instrumental in increasing the company’s bottom line after sales went up by 40% to reach 14,400 units.