Skoda's Chairman doubts if a sub-4m sedan fits its brand - IAB Report

19/03/2015 - 18:59 | ,   | Anjan Ravi

The brand's focus is on the segments of the Rapid and above for now.

To expand its domestic business, VW India is working on introducing a sub-4 meter sedan based on the Polo's platform. The car, according to sources, would be ready for the Auto Expo 2016 (first week of February 2016) and is called by the media as the VW Polo Stuffe.

IAB render VW sub-4m Vento
VW's compact sedan would be ready for launch early next year. Our artist's rendering is for illustration only.

A question asked by many is if group brand Skoda would also take the plunge into this lucrative segment that has seen Honda, Maruti, Hyundai and Tata draw above-par volumes from. The Czech carmaker's mass-market product, the Rapid, is after all a badge-engineered VW Vento. Hence it is not incongruent to expect the Skoda's version of the compact Volkswagen.

Responding to the same question at this year's Geneva Motor Show, Prof. Dr. h.c. Winfried Vahland, Chairman of Skoda, told Indian Autos Blog -

I don't know if it really fits for Skoda or not, I doubt it. We've a nice sedan range with the Octavia and Rapid.

2015 Skoda Superb front three quarter view at 2015 Geneva Motor Show
The next major launch for Skoda in India would be the new Superb, and a facelift for the Rapid.

Dr. Vahland's response is consistent with what others said before. Skoda Auto India's officials said in the past that segments like the executive sedan (Octavia) and luxury sedan (Superb) are the company's core competences, and that the short term focus would be on these segments.

Also read: Skoda India launches Zeal edition across model range

Though a sub-4 meter compact sedan may not materialize, a comprehensive facelift is planned for the Rapid, and a launch is expected next year.

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