Skoda Kodiaq unveiled in Berlin

Skoda has taken the wraps-off its much awaited full-sized SUV, the Kodiaq, in Berlin. Skoda’s first attempt at SUVs, the Kodiaq is 4.7 metres long, with its trump card being the 7-seats option that is on offer.

Named after an Alaskan bear, Kodiaq is one of the best looking cars from Skoda’s stable, designed by Josef Kaba (Design Head). The enormous size gives it a lot of road presence along with the addition of space on the inside. Many elements have been carried over from the Superb, such as the angular lines on the doors and the headlights too. The massive ‘Butterfly’ grille is accompanied by the bulge on the bonnet, a standard design element on all Skodas. The rear is flanked by traditional C-shaped tail lights along with Audi-esque lines, carrying over all the way from A-pillar. Overall, the design is clean and striking and will definitely be one of its USPs when launched in India.

Internationally, the Kodiaq will be offered with a choice of five powertrains, of which two are diesels. In India, we expect the Kodiaq to be launched with a 2-litre diesel engine, mated to a 7-speed DSG gearbox. The same engine has been doing duty on the Octavia and churns out 141bhp and 320Nm of torque.

The Kodiaq is longer than the Octavia by just 40mm, but Skoda claims that the space has been improved on the inside and is marginally higher as compared to other SUVs of its class. The dashboard has a neat and functional layout, with vertical elements all over. The AC vents are separated by a 6.5-inch touch-screen based infotainment system that incorporates several functions, including the latest Skoda Connect app. There’s also an option of an 8-inch Bolero touch-screen system. The top of the line Columbus navigation system adds the choice of a DVD drive along with an on-board storage of 64GB. Passengers can share their phone’s hotspot and surf the internet using the infotainment system, on-the-go.

There’s a lot of equipment on offer such as door-edge protection, which deploys a trim to protect the edges of the doors when opened in tight spots, then there is Trailer Assist which takes control over the steering wheel when a trailer is being towed. Also, there is an all new driving assistance system on offer, called Area View (allows the surroundings to be monitored on the infotainment display) and City Emergency Brake system, that assists braking at speeds up to 21mph (34kmph). Crew Protect Assist closes the windows and sunroof automatically, during the event of an impending accident.

In terms of features, the Kodiaq gets a heated steering wheel, adaptive cruise control, inductive phone charging, Canton stereo with 10 speakers, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, MirrorLink, driving mode selector and Google Earth.

Skoda launched their new service and brand makeover campaign in India on September 1, coinciding with the unveiling of the Kodiaq. Expected to be launched in India by mid-2017, Skoda is spending Rs 100 crore to ramp up its base in the Indian market for the Kodiaq and other important launches for the brand. When launched, the Kodiaq will go against the likes of Hyundai Santa Fe, Honda CR-V, Ford Endeavour and Toyota Fortuner.

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