SKODA has become the official sponsor and vehicle partner to the Tour de France for the twelfth year running.
A key highlight of the Tour is the unveiling of the new SKODA Superb, which will serve as the 'Red Car', leading the rider field. The 250-vehicle strong SKODA fleet once again forms the focus of brand's sponsorship, which is also sponsoring the Green Jersey for the best sprinter at this year's Tour for the first time.
Erica Vernon, national communications manager at SKODA UK, said: "Supporting the most famous bicycle race in the world is an annual highlight in our comprehensive sponsorship of cycling. Our commitment to the Tour de France has a special importance this year with the premiere of our new SKODA Superb as the 'Red Car'.
"Not only are we approaching 12 years of sponsoring this incredible event, we are celebrating 12 decades of SKODA and its cycling heritage; 120 years ago in 1895 the company began its production with bicycles."
The 102nd Tour de France covers over 3,360 kilometres in 21 stages this year. The starting gun will be fired on 4 July in the Dutch city of Utrecht and the riders will cross the Champs-Elysées finishing line on 26 July. Spectators' eyes will be drawn to one thing in particular leading the rider field over the next few weeks: the so-called 'Red Car' the new SKODA Superb. The brand's completely redeveloped flagship model sets new standards in its class, featuring emotive designs, the most room in its segment and state-of-the-art technology.
During the Tour, the red Superb serves as a 'mobile control centre' for le tour director Christian Prudhomme. He said: "I'm really looking forward to travelling in the new Superb. The car offers more space than the already spacious predecessor and really looks the part a perfect Red Car."
For this occasion, the new Superb has been painted 'Corrida-Red', and a huge panoramic glass roof has been installed that can be opened at the touch of a button. This means that Prudhomme can stand up when the roof is open. In addition, the Superb is fully equipped with technical equipment to perfectly fulfill its function as the 'mobile control centre' of the tour. This includes four radio channels, over which the tour director can receive information and give orders.
The brand will also be providing a strong fleet of 250 SKODA vehicles once again this year, with Octavia Estates and Superbs serving as the accompanying vehicles. During these three weeks, the vehicles will cover around 2.8 million kilometres, and since 2004, the SKODA fleet has travelled over 30 million kilometres at the Tour de France. So far, not a single car has ever broken down.
SKODA's sponsorship will also be accompanied by a broad communications campaign. The 'WeLoveCycling' website, launched last year, features live reports, films and lots of information on the world of cycling. The site also gives visitors the chance to win an array of prizes including spending a day in the peloton of the Tour de France.
SKODA's commitment to cycling demonstrates the special relationship the brand has to the bicycle