Skoda Still Eyes US Market Entry, Kodiaq SUV Could Lead The Pack

America’s love for SUVs could is something that Skoda is well aware of, and it could eventually help the Kodiaq cross the ocean.

At the moment, the brand’s re-entry to the United States, after a 50-year plus absence, is something that has been previously discussed, when the automaker reportedly trademarked the Octavia, Superb and Yeti monikers, along with the vRS and H-Tec names, but it seems that the much-teased SUV is the best opportunity for Skoda to do so.

If we do decide to compete in the US, we will have one chance to make a good first impression. We feel that if we were there now, the Kodiaq would be a home-run car“, the company’s chief Bernhard Maier told Autocar.

Skoda has no apparent time scale to make a final decision when it comes to its return to the United States, but besides this market, the Czech manufacturer has its eyes on South Korea, Singapore, and Iran.

Meanwhile, the brand is getting ready to pull the covers off its large SUV, the Kodiaq, this fall, during the 2016 Paris Motor Show, prior to its European launch, next year. The seven-seater will be underpinned by the VW Group’s MQB platform and it will be powered by an assortment of petrol and diesel engines.

PHOTO GALLERY

  • fabri99

    I don’t know about the Kodiaq, but I’m sure americans would absolutely love the Superb. Like REALLY love it.

    • Tumbi Mtika

      I can see one in my future if they do cross the pond.

      • fabri99

        Well, why wouldn’t you? The Superb is classy (and it may seem obvious but so many mid-size sedans sold in the US aren’t classy-looking at all), elegant, well-made, spacious and rather cheap for what it has to give. It would almost look high-end…

        • Tumbi Mtika

          Exactly!

    • 85ZingoGTR

      I can see Americans liking the Kodiaq. VWs problem is pricing and arrogance. If they bring Skoda as a european brand with alot of value, offer an excellent warranty, and Skodas reliability is on par or better than VW, it’ll do fine. It won’t go down the same road FIAT is going that’s for sure. The one I am not too sure about is the Yeti. It just seems too small but then again, we have been seeing a surge of mini CUVs like the Trax, HR-V, Crosstrek, Renegade, and Juke.

  • MarkoS

    This looks better than the Audi and VW SUV’s, They could do well in the USA if the Quality, Reliability and Value are there. The Yeti intrigues me most. I’d like to see SEAT in the USA as well.

  • Ilbirs

    I still don’t see a point for Skoda operating in U.S. and maybe this trademarking of some designations is just to grant their uses worldwide, as Skoda is a highly sucessful brand in VW stable. However, I see some possibilities if this hypothesis came true:

    1) Skoda is an entry-level brand which cars look way more upscale than we could consider for this kind of approach. They are well built, something we can see by looking how the Czech brand tops the J.D. Power research for Europe year after year, being the best brand of that side of the Atlantic Ocean and being very close to the Japanese ones when it comes to faults per 100 units. Yes, we’re talking about the best products the VW group can offer for less than what a Vee-Dub costs.
    Not only Skodas are better built than Volkswagens and Audis but also they have catching lines, being well beyond those strictly functional shapes (even if ugly designed) we would expect for entry level models. Just see what this Kodiaq shows that can’t be hidden by the camo;

    2) Other thing that we must consider is the fact that Skodas have more creativity put in their projects than other models of the group. See the previous Superb:

    http://s3.caradvice.com.au/thumb/960/500/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/SkodaSuperb-twindoor.jpg

    Skoda released this solution before BMW showed its similar trunk lid on the 5-Series GT. But the Czechs aren’t only restricted to this specially bright moment:

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/cb/Skoda_Roomster_front_20091212.jpg

    Unfortunately the very nice Roomster is deceased, but there’s still some interesting models, like the Yeti, due to be replaced by some MQB based thing:

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/6f/%C5%A0koda_Yeti_diesel_Greenline_registered_July_2014_(ie_post_2013_facelift)_1598cc.JPG

    There are also the Rapid (in both notchback and hatchback forms), the Octavia and the Superb, this one a thing to make anyone forget the existence of the Passat, so more interesting that is compared to the Vee-Dub’s sedan, even if the current generation doesn’t have the Twindoor anymore;

    3) Besides the fact that Skoda is strong in Europe and almost unknown outside the Old World, there’s the fact of being one of the oldest brands in activity and the curiosity of its logo being allusive to the headdress and arrow of an indigenous guy of North America:

    http://www.car-brand-names.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/Skoda-logo-2.jpg

    As there’s no direct connection to a specific Indian nation, no problem of Native associations complaining about the use of the image of a tribe.
    There’s also some connection to legends of the New World when it comes to the monikers. Kodiaq couldn’t be used in North America as it’s too close to the Kodiak nameplate used by Chevrolet, but it could be replaced by other name that sends minds to the mythology of this continent, like Sasquatch. There’s also the curiosity of the final Q on Skoda’s SUV being allusive to the Alutiiq people from which language originated Kodiak. So we can consider some strong connection with the other side of Atlantic even if the brand itself isn’t that known in Americas.

    I still don’t see Skoda in Americas outside the places where the lineup is already sold (Colombia, Venezuela, Panama, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Guatemala and some parts of the Caribbean), but maybe VW is wanting to sell it in U.S. to divest some of the bad reputation earned by the main brand due to Dieselgate and previously the bad results in long term durability surveys. As Skoda rivals Toyota and Honda in Europe when it comes to being well built…

  • Justin Spencer

    I doubt it would be a home run. The Skoda brand name is not known here and what’s the point really??? Audi and VW already sell their versions of the same cars and SUV’s

    • Auf Wiedersehen

      Totally agree…it would make a crowded market more crowded. The designs are just odd too.

    • 85ZingoGTR

      Nobody knew Hyundai when it first came here. I remember when I first saw the ads back in the early 90s how I thought it was a Honda knockoff with its slanted H and what seemed like a spin-off of the Honda name. Now they are one of the highest selling by volume in the US. Skoda atleast has resources from two other brands that sell prominently in the US. Audi and VW. So it’s not like it’ll be a market that’s new for them.

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