Skoda 100MBX Celebrates 50th Anniversary

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Long before it was acquired by VW, Skoda was renowned for quirky, rear-engined cars that kicked off with the 1000 and 1100 family in 1964.

A stylish two-door derivative, the 100 MBX Coupe, came in 1966 and instantly gained cult status thanks to its reverse-raked rear windscreen and seemingly pilarless glasshouse.

Not a powerhouse by any means, with a 988cc, 51 PS 4-cylinder engine at the back and a top speed of 127 km/h (78m mph). Its 815kg (1796 lbs) did, in some degree, make up for it. In 1967, it gained an 1107cc engine and a new nomenclature,the 1100 MBX DeLuxe, with more torque (81.4 vs 75.5 Nm). With ) it was never going to win any races.

Total production was 2,517 by the time the model was put to rest in 1969; what’s noteworthy is that over 50 percent of those were exported, helping the Skoda nameplate become established internationally.

Today Skoda builds more conventional cars, but they still have a design identity distinct from the Volkswagen vehicles upon which they’re based. A three row SUV is on the way, expanding the brand's current range that currently includes the Octavia,Fabia, Citigo, Superb and Yeti.

By Mitchell Jones