Volkswagen’s Seat looks to return to profit with new models

Seat Ateca

Volkswagen’s long-struggling Spanish department Seat stated it might go back to profit this year for the first time from 2008 and remain there through 2018, gaining from demand for brand-new and upgraded models.

Expense cuts and sales of models with greater trim levels assisted Seat boost first-half operating profit to 93 million euros ($104 million) from 52 million a year earlier, its best-ever six-month outcome.

The brand-new Ateca, Seat’s first sport-utility vehicle being presented across Europe this year, will help second-half sales and volume ought to grow even more in 2017 due to revamped variations of the Leon and Ibiza models and the launch of the Arona, another SUV, President Luca de Meo informed.

The Ateca, taking on models from competitors including Renault and Hyundai Motor in the fast-growing compact SUV segment, has actually attracted 21,000 orders this summertime with numerous consumers new to the brand, de Meo stated.

“It changes the game for us, it provides us entirely different credibility” on success, the CEO stated in an interview on Friday at the Paris Motor Show.

“If we have a little bit of luck and markets don’t collapse, I see the next 3 years as profitable years.”

Seat in 2015 narrowed its operating loss to 10 million euros from 127 million in 2014, as per Volkswagen’s annual report.

Volkswagen, which purchased Seat in 1986 to boost its exposure to the then fast-growing Spanish market, has long attempted to get rid of the losses triggered by under-utilized capacity at Seat’s Spanish factory located in Martorell.

It has cut management and production costs and moved production of Audi’s Q3 SUV to Martorell.

De Meo stated Seat may offer an electric vehicle by about 2020 as parent Volkswagen presses zero-emission technology throughout the 12-brand group.

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