Škoda releases long-awaited Kodiaq [w/ poll]

After what seems like years of speculation, spyshots, teasers and leaks, Škoda finally released its take on the 7-seat family crossover: the Kodiaq. But for once all the buildup may actually be justified, as the Kodiaq is not just another Škoda model – it is the harbinger of a bevy of new crossovers from the Czech carmaker, and has the potential to become one of its best-sellers. That, and it’s probably the ultimate answer to the question “why should Škoda enter the US market?”.

It actually looks quite good

Previewed by the Vision S concept last year, the Kodiaq is a good-looking car, in a conservative sort of way. The styling survived the transition from concept to production surprisingly well, with the biggest loss being the deep crease in the doors and the bluff, Range Rover Evoque-esque grille that had to make way for a more integrated, aerodynamically-friendly setup. It’s a car that hides its length surprisingly well for a non-premium model, many of which often end up looking too tall and narrow. What’s more, the interior utilizes a new design language for the brand – again, still conservative, but no longer does it look like it was purposefully uglified by the VAG overlords at VW to maintain brand positioning.

Skoda Vision S concept

Enough about the styling – is the car any good?

Nothing is certain as yet, but the early signs are good. The Kodiaq is built on the same modular MQB platform as the acclaimed Octavia and Superb models, not to mention many VW, Seat and Audi cars. This means it will get the latest VAG engines, safety and entertainment systems, as well as a sophisticated suspension, modern 4×4 system and relatively low weight. What’s more, in true Škoda fashion it offers a lot of space for the money – it is around 20cm longer than the VW Tiguan and 30cm longer than the Seat Ateca, and is the only one of the three to offer a third row of seats.

How it fits in the market

As a result of its added size and passenger capacity, the Kodiaq occupies a bit of a goldilocks space in the crossover spectrum – larger than the usual model from the midsized crossover segment, and thus offering a genuine 7-seat capacity (unlike the Nissan X-Trail/Rogue), but not as large or expensive as large crossovers. In fact, the Kodiaq’s positioning is similar to the 3rd-generation Kia Sorento, the current market leader in the Large SUV segment. Add to that competitive prices, promised to undercut all competitors including the aforementioned Sorento, and Škoda has a real hit on its hands. How big? Let us know what you think in the comments section and poll below:

How well will the Kodiaq do in Europe?

  • It will sell great, just not as well as the Octavia (100k-200k per year) (60%, 51 Votes)
  • It will struggle to lure consumers away from more-established crossovers (fewer than 100k units per year) (32%, 27 Votes)
  • It will become Škoda's bestseller (200k+ units per year) (8%, 7 Votes)

Total Voters: 85

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About Krzysztof Wozniak

Kriss grew up in Poland reading German car magazines, before moving to England and graduating to the British magazines, which he still considers the best in the world and continues reading them after he’d moved to the US. In college he promised himself he’s buy himself a used Porsche before he turned 30 (not to be accused of having a mid-life crisis), but instead family needs dictated a Subaru Outback. Still waiting for that perfect moment to buy a used 2008-ish Cayman…
You can find all his articles Here.

Comments

  1. Whole Large SUV segment in Europe in 2015 was below 50 k. VW Tiguan sale in Medium SUV segment was 150k in 2015. Is everything correct in this poll? Anyway I dont think Kodiaq can beat even Tiguan so belov 100k units per year.

  2. Sales will be good but not as good as Tiguan’s – similar like Passat – Superb. Superb sales is better than french rivals but still far below Passat BUT these two cars are the most popular in its segment

    • Are we talking about french cars here? I think not… this is actually why you are a hater.

      • We talk here about Skoda’s sales. The fact is that Superb’ s sales is higher than french competitors. Sales of Kodiaq could go the same way and your comment already is a psychosis. Unfortunately.

  3. Although it looks better than the related Seat Ateca and VW Tiguan in my opinion, I think it’s too plane, even for a Skoda. The only chance for this car to be successful is a decent price: 35-50k. This way the larger/roomier Kodiaq doesn’t overlap the other VAG models much and at the same time won’t be considered a luxury car. Otherwise people would still prefer a Hyundai Santa Fe or Kia Sorento. Well, I would anyway.

  4. Very, very interesting situation. Skoda and Seat are entering the segment extremely late. Will they manage? The concurrence is huge right now. Moreover in this segment the car design matters a lot more than in Seg C or D.

    Quashqai looks untouchable. Same with Tuscon and Sportage. But Kuga, Kadjar and Japanese cars are in range of this Skoda.

    in a year we will find out.

  5. I fail to understand why you need to bash another poster because he mentions french competitors.

    As for this Skoda I really don’t understand all this hype for a car with an anonymous design, from the appliance brand of the VW group.
    Sure they’re as good as VW’s and cheaper if you don’t mind slightly worse interiors. But I really don’t understand the hype.
    Especially, when the market is already packed with alternatives in the segment. I expect to sell moderately well, but it won’t destroy the market.

  6. Carlos Tomic says:

    I think Hyundai-Kia started making sacrifices to obtain market share, i. e. low prices, good designs, acceptable interior materials, mechanical reliaiability, extensive coverage, etc.

    Once their customers have confidence that they won´t be stranded in highways and resorts, asking for help, then and only then, Koreans started asking for better profitability and higher prices.

    VW doesn´t believe it has to prove anything and from day one they ask high prices …. so they open the market to new competitors, permiting them to learn local conditions, tastes and earn market share until they go for profitability. Skoda and Seat¨s philosophy is similar to their parent house and so they will always stay behind Koreans…in Europe.

  7. David Walter-Davies says:

    Interesting, looks a bit oh no not another one sushi aka new SEAT effort and is a stupid price for a SKODA..Rather have a Discovery or Discovery Sport anyday

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