Skoda’s Karoq small SUV here in 2018
SKODA has revealed the replacement for its ageing Yeti crossover in the form of the Karoq small SUV, which heavily borrows styling cues from its Kodiaq sibling and is expected in Australian showrooms around mid-2018.
Speaking with GoAuto, Skoda Australia corporate communications general manager Paul Pottinger confirmed the new model will be launched internationally in November and “we would expect to see it here towards the end of the second quarter (next year)”.
Although not yet fully exposed in the metal – the unveiling is scheduled for May 18 in Stockholm – camouflaged shots of the Karoq reveal it will take a big step away from the design of the quirky Yeti, which featured a boxy rear end and almost van-like proportions.
The Karoq will instead follow the same design philosophy as its Kodiaq large SUV stablemate and sport sleek headlights, a prominent front grille, a wide lower air intake and wraparound tail-lights.
Mr Pottinger revealed that the design similarities are no accident, and that the Karoq would be positioned more as a smaller Kodiaq than a new-generation Yeti.
“Just as, to give you an example, the Tiguan and the Tiguan AllSpace, this is very much the relationship that exists between the Karoq and Kodiaq,” he said.
“Yeti was a great thing in establishing the brand in Australia and it served its purpose, but it’s pretty clear it would look anomalous even if it were to be continued now.”
Overseas versions will be powered by a choice of five different EU6-compliant turbocharged engines, two petrol and three diesels ranging from 1.0- to 2.0-litres in displacement, with power outputs ranging from 85kW up to 140kW.
Six-speed manual and seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmissions are available with all engine options, excluding the range-topping 2.0-litre TDI which comes mated exclusively to the self-shifting unit.
Although still too far away from launch, Mr Pottinger could not confirm which engines would be made available to Australian customers, but anticipated that “we would launch with a petrol and a diesel model”.
“We’re more likely to take, being Australia, the more powerful variants,” he said. “We can’t tell you exactly which variants we are going to get because it’ s still a work in progress.”
Built on Volkswagen’s ubiquitous MQB platform, the Karoq measures 4382mm in length, 1841mm in width, 1605mm high and with a wheelbase of 2638mm (2630mm for all-wheel-drive equipped models).
This makes the new Skoda model bigger and lower than the Yeti crossover it replaces, which clocks in at 4223mm long, 1793mm wide, 1691mm high, with a 2578mm wheelbase.
With the second row seats in place, the Karoq is able to swallow 521 litres, but with the seats folded down, storage capacity swells to 1630L.
In overseas markets, the Karoq will also come with a VarioFlex seating option which replaces the second row seats with three individual adjustable pews, and can be moved and folded independently or taken out altogether.
With the seats taken out, Skoda says “the SUV becomes a van with a maximum load capacity of 1810 litres”, and the Skoda will also fit the incoming crossover with a new infotainment system featuring Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and MirrorLink functionality, and will spread varying features including wireless phone charging, internet connectivity and satellite navigation across various tiers.
The Karoq will also debut Skoda’s all-digital instrumental display – similar to Audi’s virtual cockpit –and will also feature five selectable driving modes including normal, sports, eco, individual and dedicated 4x4 snow setting.
A large range of safety systems will be available in the Karoq depending on trim, including parking assist, lane keep assist, blind spot monitoring and autonomous emergency braking, and LED headlights will be made available as an option.
As seen on GoAuto.com.au