Skoda Planning New SUV Larger than the Yeti and 5-Door Rapid Hatchback

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Skoda is likely to add a second SUV to its lineup, one that would be larger than the VW Tiguan-based Yeti. The second SUV is part of the VW-owned company’s plans to increase global sales by 50 percent over the next few years. Skoda’s target is to increase sales from just under a million last year to 1.5 million by 2018, when the VW Group wants to become the world’s largest carmaker.

A second SUV is seen as vital for the success of the brand's growth plan. While the Yeti is a successful model, the Czech carmaker believes there’s room for another, larger SUV. Although there are no details about the new SUV, it would likely be based on VW’s good-for-all MQB architecture.

Skoda has already started a product renewal and expansion program, with the new Octavia estate being the third vehicle of its plan, following the launch of the Rapid and new Octavia hatch. The estate range includes both front- and four-wheel drive versions, with a new Scout version also scheduled for launch. As with the previous generation, the Octavia Scout will bring greater ground clearance, lower body cladding and SUV-style elements when it is released next year.

But before the Octavia Scout, Skoda will introduce a five-door Rapid hatchback at the Frankfurt auto show in September, which will follow closely the lines of the 2011 VisionD Concept. Naturally, this ambitious growth plan must be supported by an increased production capacity. This is why Skoda will build two more plants in China, which will more than double its local capacity to 500,000 cars a year. The Czech carmaker also analyzes an expansion in Russia, which it sees as Europe’s top market in the next few years.

By Dan Mihalascu

Note: Skoda Yeti crossover pictured below


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