Geneva: Skoda VisionS concept

Geneva: Skoda VisionS concept

Volkswagen’s Czech Republic-based Škoda division has introduced a thinly-veiled concept that previews its first-ever SUV. Called VisionS, the off-roader will be presented to the public next month at the Geneva Auto Show.

The concept blends styling cues borrowed from Škoda’s current design language with a rugged look characterized by a tall front end, a high belt line, and pronounced wheel arches. It stretches 185 inches from bumper to bumper, 66 inches tall, and 75 inches wide, figures that makes it about as big as a BMW X3, and it rides on Volkswagen’s modular MQB platform. Interestingly, Volkswagen’s Audi and SEAT brands will also show MQB-based crossovers in Geneva.

The VisionS offers seating for seven passengers spread out over three rows of seats, though pictures of the cabin haven’t been published yet.

Power for the VisionS comes from a plug-in hybrid drivetrain made up of a 1.4-liter gasoline-burning TSI engine rated at 156 horsepower, and two electric motors that make 54 and 114 horsepower, respectively. The VisionS can reach 62 mph from a stop in 7.4 seconds and it goes on to a top speed of 124 mph. More importantly, it allegedly returns nearly 125 mpg in a mixed European cycle, and it boasts an all-electric range of 31 miles when the lithium-ion battery pack is fully topped up.

Tentatively dubbed Kodiak, the production version of the Škoda VisionS concept is expected to arrive in October at the Paris Auto Show. It goes without saying that the high-riding Škoda will not be sold on our side of the pond, but insiders suggest it will be closely related to the upcoming production version of the Volkswagen Crossblue concept.