Skoda Kushaq is underpinned by the heavily localised MQB A0 IN platform and is expected to be competitively priced against Kia Sonet, Hyundai Creta and others
Skoda Auto India certainly has some crucial years ahead as the first products from the India 2.0 strategy are heading to the showrooms. Skoda and Volkswagen have invested big time to develop a heavily localised architecture that would cater for different body styles with its modular nature, as the India-exclusive platform derived from the extensively used MQB A0 platform is dubbed the ‘MQB A0 IN’.
At the 2020 Auto Expo, Skoda and Volkswagen announced their intentions to enter the hotly contested mid-size SUV segment by showcasing two concepts. The Czech Republican automaker came up with the Vision IN that really stole the motoring show last February while VW’s Taigun was surprisingly in its close-to-production avatar even at the event.
In the new calendar year, every carmaker is looking to have an edge over each other by unveiling or even launching their new products. Skoda has stepped into the bandwagon as the Vision IN Concept based production five-seater SUV will be the first one to arrive to take on competitors such as Hyundai Creta, Kia Sonet, Tata Harrier, Nissan Kicks, MG Hector and others.
While the production name of the Skoda mid-size SUV was subjected to speculations, the brand has dismissed the rumours and today officially announced that it would be called the ‘Kushaq’. Carrying the latest design philosophy followed by Skoda globally, the Kushaq gets split LED headlamps with DRLs, 17-inch alloy wheels and roof rails, butterfly front grille, bold ‘SKODA’ lettering on the tail gate and so on.
It is expected to be powered by a 1.0-litre three-cylinder TSI turbo-petrol engine and a 1.5-litre four-cylinder TSI turbocharged petrol unit. The former is used in the Rapid and other models generating 110 PS maximum power and 175 Nm of peak torque. The 1.5-litre TSI four-cylinder unit could produce around 150 PS and 250 Nm.
The transmission duties will be done by a six-speed manual and an optional seven-speed DSG automatic. The interior will boast of premium features such as a large touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, automatic climate control, sunroof, wireless charging facility, an all-digital instrument cluster, ventilated seats, and a host of connective and safety technologies.