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The newest creation from Skoda’s vocational school is a roadster inspired by the brand’s 1100 OHC sports prototype and commemorates the anniversary of the company’s founding in 1895
The seventh Skoda Student Concept Car, designed by 31 trainees (including five women) at the Skoda vocational school, commemorates the Slavia name from the first bicycle produced by Vaclav Laurin and Vaclav Klement after they founded the company in 1895. The students chose the Skoda Scala as the basis for the concept, turning the compact hatch into a sporty spider. From the first draft to building this one-off car, the students completed every step themselves, with support from their instructors in the design, production and technical development departments.
As in the production version of the Scala, the car’s distinctive design, defined by precise lines and sculpted surfaces, ensures the spider too boasts a sporty yet understated appearance. Matching the looks of the Slavia is the familiar 147bhp 1.5-litre TSI petrol engine with a seven-speed DSG, the same as the Volkswagen T-Roc and Skoda Karoq. In fact, much of the production Scala is carried over, including the front and rear axle, steering, and the electronics and infotainment.
The Skoda 1100 OHC sports prototype: the inspiration behind the Slavia
Presented in 1957, the Skoda 1100 OHC sports prototype was an open-top two-seater racecar aimed at endurance rallies. Its combination of a low-slung glass fibre‑reinforced plastic shell, a near 550kg overall weight and 1.1-litre in-line-four engine making 90bhp helped it reach a top speed of about 200kmph.
Comprehensive modifications to the body
To transform the Scala hatch into the open-top Slavia, the trainees reinforced the underbody, removed the roof and welded the rear doors in place. To redirect the airflow over the vehicle, they developed a special cover with hallmark twin speedster humps behind the seats, which blends into the new boot lid featuring an integrated rear spoiler. The students paid special attention to clean transitions on the A-pillars and doors, the sporty look rounded off by the 20-inch alloys from the Skoda Kodiaq vRS running the brake system and wheel hubs nicked from the Octavia vRS. The redesigned underfloor area houses a modified exhaust system.
Special White Crystal Blue pearlescent paint finish
The White Crystal Blue exterior colour consists of three layers resulting in a bluish pearlescent effect, emphasised by means of neon blue accents along the signature Skoda upright yet sporty body lines as well as on the distinctive Skoda grille and the brand logo on the bonnet contrasts with the black detailing on the front and rear aprons and side sills.
Programmable LEDs, positioned below the side sills carried over from the Scala Monte Carlo and behind the alloy wheels, provide user-configurable dynamic exterior ambient lighting in blue, red and white – the three colours of the Czech flag. The illuminated Skoda wordmark also doubles as an indicator, brake light and reversing light, with a ‘Drive 125 years’ badge on the front doors recalling the company’s founding in its anniversary year.
Sporty interior with white highlights
Four-point seat belts and special Sparco racing seats with a black perforated leather finish on the cushions and backrests with white contrast stitching on the seat bolsters provide sporty highlights in the interior. This contrasting colour scheme carries over to other interior elements finished in black leather, such as the centre armrest, shift lever gaiter, handbrake lever gaiter, and the lower two-thirds of the steering wheel rim (while the upper third is finished in white leather, as is the shift lever knob).
A particularly eye-catching detail is the black leather parcel shelf featuring two embroidered lions that house two sunken bass speakers. The subwoofer has an output of 2250 watts, with the remaining speakers adding another 320 watts. The Slavia’s boot accommodates two Skoda folding e-scooters, a perfect, eco-friendly solution for what is known as ‘last mile mobility.’
Speaking about the design details, Zdenek Stanke, team leader at the Skoda Academy said,“The Skoda Slavia radiates a special dynamism even when parked. The new, humped rear cover, new boot lid and large wheels make for a very sporty appearance, which is further enhanced by the racing seats and four-point seat belts in the interior. The students have managed to imbue their vehicle with its own individual character while mastering the engineering challenges involved in turning a closed-body vehicle into an open-top spider.”
Alois Kauer, who took over as head of the Skoda Academy in February 2020, says, “The Student Car is the Skoda vocational school’s annual flagship project. For the seventh year running, our students are demonstrating the high standard of our in-house training by planning, designing and building an impressive one-off car. We enable them to design their dream car, working with professionals from our various departments. As a result, their training already familiarises them with processes that will become part of their working lives later on, when they graduate from our vocational school and embark on a career in our company.”