“We are studying an entry into the Chinese market,” Erich Schmitt told the Financial Times Deutschland. “We have launched tests in costal cities to see if potential clients accept our models.”
Seat is searching for new markets to stem a slow erosion of its sales, which suffer from a “low cost” image and quality problems, the newspaper reported. “We need to reposition the brand,” said Schmitt, the former director of VW’s high-end line, Audi. “It will undoubtedly take two generations of models.”
By 2018, the Seat boss said the carmaker hoped to double sales to around 800,000 per year. The company is also testing reaction to its cars in Russian cities, and is looking into the possibility of tapping the South American market as well, Schmitt said.