Skoda Auto outlined its plans for the Indian market at a press conference yesterday in Delhi. Aside from the announcement of the Skoda India 2.0 project revolving around the MQB A0 IN, the company revealed plans to launch the Skoda Karoq in India.
Skoda disclosed its intention to have three SUVs in the Indian market by 2021. The first one is the Skoda Kodiaq already on sale here, while the third will be the MQB A0 IN-based SUV confirmed to debut in the second half of 2020. Before that, however, the company will introduce another SUV. The product in question is the Skoda Karoq.
Unveiled in May last year, the Skoda Karoq replaces the Yeti in the company's European lineup. It sits below the Skoda Kodiaq. In January, a report emerged stating that the Skoda Karoq will arrive in India in 2019. When launched, the SUV would rival the Hyundai Tucson and top-end variants of the Jeep Compass. The upcoming new Honda CR-V could turn out to be a potential rival as well.
The India-spec Skoda Karoq is likely to use a 150 PS 2.0 L TDI diesel engine. It pairs with either a 6-speed manual transmission or a 7-speed DSG automatic. AWD is offered as standard. The transmission choice(s) and the availability of AWD in India will be revealed closer to its launch date. The Skoda Karoq for international markets also employs 1.0 L TSI petrol, 1.5 L TSI petrol, and 1.6 L TDI diesel engines. In its fully-loaded form, the Skoda Karoq features full-LED headlamps, LED fog lights with cornering function, 18-inch alloy wheels, C-shaped LED tail lights, panoramic sliding roof, virtual instrument cluster and 10-speaker Canton sound system.
While the main focus of the Skoda India 2.0 strategy remains on the MQB IN A0 and volume products based off that, improving after sales and servicing, and reducing the cost of ownership are other vital aspects of the plan. Volkswagen will be investing EUR 1 billion (INR 7,900 crore) primarily between 2019 and 2021 to realise these goals.