To form a strong base for the one billion euros India 2.0 project, Volkswagen Group has done quite a bit in the last year or so. For instance, it opened a tech centre in Maharashtra and merged Volkswagen and Skoda Auto under one entity – Skoda Auto Volkswagen India Pvt. Ltd. The company’s aim is simple – let Skoda Auto lead the way and capture a combined market share of 5 per cent by 2025. The first product to push the company towards that goal will be a compact SUV.
What you see here is the first official sketch of that SUV. More specifically, the concept form of that car. Skoda has tagged it as the Vision IN. The show vehicle will premiere at the 2020 Auto Expo. As is the case with concepts, the digital drawing paints a promising picture. The first noteworthy aspect is the colour orange. As per Skoda, the colour “inspires vitality and creativity”. That, in combination with the chrome-plated panels, makes the interior ambience quite shouty.
Behind the flat-bottomed steering wheel, which has buttons for telephony, cruise control, voice control and lane keep, is a 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster. Right next to is a free-standing infotainment display, which is accompanied by slim ventilation louvres across the centre of the dashboard. If you didn’t notice, there are next-to-none physical buttons to control features such as the air conditioning and music system. What looks like another touch-sensitive display in front of the swanky-looking gear lever, could take care of such functions.
It is too early and a bit wrong to get excited with this sketch. To keep the costs in check, most of the touch-control wizardry will not be part of the package. That said, features like an automatic transmission, wireless mobile charger, automatic climate control, auto headlamps and wipers, support for Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, ambient lighting, an electric sunroof and all those mentioned above should be available in the finished product.
Underpinned by the MQB-A0-IN platform, the Skoda SUV will also form the basis of Volkswagen’s answer to the Hyundai Creta. The powertrain options could include two turbo-petrol engines – a 1.0-litre, 3-cylinder TSI and a 1.5-litre, 4-cylinder TSI. The same setup will later find duty in more competitively-priced products such as the new Rapid, Vento and the Polo. When will the Skoda SUV launch? Sometime in the second quarter of 2021.