The first Volkswagen Group model based on the new MQB AO IN platform will be a compact SUV from Skoda Auto India.
We informed you earlier that Skoda Auto India is leading the Volkswagen Group’s new “India 2.0” strategy. According to ACI, Volkswagen Group’s India arm will launch 4 new models in the country under its new strategy. The first model will be introduced in the Indian market in 2020.
Speaking to AutoCarIndia, Boparai, MD of Skoda Auto India said “As it has been announced a few months ago, we have a platform for India that will be localised here and that’s the immediate priority as far as the products go. The other priorities that we have is maximizing the synergy between our various entities here as we go over and to have a common strategy for the Group as a whole in India.”
The new products from Volkswagen Group will be developed on an India-specific MQB AO platform. The first model based on the platform will be launched under Skoda’s nameplate. It will be a 5-seater premium SUV to challenge the likes of Hyundai Creta, Nissan Kicks and Renault Captur. The SUV will be introduced in 2020 and will share styling cues with the Skoda Vision X Concept. A production version of the SUV will be showcased at the Geneva Motor Show in March. Also See – Volkswagen T-Cross India Launch & Other Details
To be built on heavily localised MQB AO IN platform, the India-spec Skoda SUV will be longer than the European version. It will have more legroom at the back and a reclining seat that can be slide based on the requirement for additional legroom or luggage space. The report further claims that the new SUV will get a 1.5-litre, direct-injection petrol engine that produces about 130bhp of power.
Previous media reports claim that the Skoda SUV will receive a new 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine that is likely to offer over 110bhp of power. The second model to join Skoda SUV will be the Volkswagen T-Cross SUV. The SUV is already on sale in Europe, China and South America. It will be based on the same MQB AO IN platform. It will share body panels and interior bits with the Skoda Vision X-based SUV.
After these 2 SUVs, Volkswagen Group will launch 2 new mid-sized sedans in India. These 2 models will come as a replacement for the Volkswagen Vento and the Skoda Rapid. Volkswagen is likely to bring in the global Virtus sedan, which was launched globally last year. Both the sedans will be built on the new MQB AO In platform.