The first product concepts ŠKODA AUTO’s VISION IN and Volkswagen Compact SUV Taigun were showcased at Skoda Auto Volkswagen media Night in Delhi together with Audi A8 L, Lamborghini Huracan EVO and Porsche 911 Cabriolet.
SKODA AUTO Volkswagen India, a new company formed about 18 months ago has showcased a new mid-size family SUV both from ŠKODA and Volkswagen at the first ever Skoda Auto Volkswagen media Night held in Delhi. The ŠKODA VISION IN and Volkswagen Compact SUV TAIGUN are the first concepts to use the MQB-A0-IN variant of the MQB car platform, which has been specially developed for the Indian market. The media night also witnessed the presentation of Audi A8L, Lamborghini Huracán and Porsche 911 Cabriolet marking the first time the group brands were showcased together.
As part of the INDIA 2.0 project, ŠKODA has been responsible for heading Volkswagen Group’s model campaign on the Indian market since June 2018. The consolidation of the three Volkswagen Group passenger-car companies previously represented in India to form the new ŠKODA AUTO Volkswagen India Private Limited (SAVWIPL) in October 2019 marked an important milestone for the project.
The ŠKODA VISION IN concept study is 4,256 mm long and has a wheelbase of 2,671 mm; its height is 1,589 mm. The VISION IN is powered by a modern and efficient petrol engine. The 1.5 TSI delivering 110 kW (150 PS) transfers its maximum torque of 250 Nm to the front wheels via a 7-speed DSG. It takes the concept study 8.7 seconds to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h. Its top speed is 195 km/h. The VISION IN features 7.5J×19 alloy wheels fitted with 235/45 R19 tyres.
In the interior of the VISION IN, ŠKODA has combined state-of-the-art technologies and innovative vegan materials with traditional Indian design and Bohemian crystal glass art. The decorative trim on the dashboard has drawn inspiration from Kalamkari, an Indian textile printing technique that uses hand-carved wooden stamps to print traditional fabric patterns. The interior also makes use of rhubarb leather, an innovative organic leather, as well as oak leather and the leather alternative made from waste pineapple leaves, Piñatex, for the seat covers, for example. The roof lining is made of recycled plastic fibres, whilst the decorative strips are made of genuine crystal. A crystalline assistant in the centre of the dashboard acts as a bridge to the digital world, as do the free-standing central display with a 12.3-inch (31.24-cm) screen, the individually customisable Virtual Cockpit and shift-by-wire technology for the 7-speed DSG.
“Together with the Volkswagen brand, we are seeking a combined market share of five per cent by 2025, depending on market and segment development. For ŠKODA, India would thus become one of the five largest markets in the world. The first models being developed as part of the INDIA 2.0 project are on the home stretch, and – by unveiling the ŠKODA VISION IN – we are giving a concrete preview of the first production car, said Bernhard Maier, CEO ŠKODA AUTO.
“The first showcase of the INDIA 2.0 concepts offers a glimpse into the exciting range that is in preparation for our customers in India. By investing in the Technology Center, state-of-the-art production processes and competent supplier partners, we are aiming to reach up to 95% localization in the new range, while maintaining the stringent quality and performance that ŠKODA and Volkswagen are known to deliver,”said Gurpratap Boparai, Managing Director of ŠKODA AUTO Volkswagen India Private Limited.
All models designed and produced locally in India in the future will be based on Volkswagen Group’s MQB-A0-IN platform, which already fulfils the stringent regulations for India that comes into effect from April 2020. With a focus on India, ŠKODA has developed the MQB-A0-IN platform variant, around which various ŠKODA and Volkswagen models will be built. The ŠKODA VISION IN and the Volkswagen Compact SUV concept are the first of a number of products that are being built on this versatile platform.
ŠKODA and Volkswagen Group India took the first major step in the INDIA 2.0 project by opening the Technology Centre in Pune in January 2019, creating 250 new jobs. The Technology Center is responsible for project management, electronics, infotainment, body design, interior, chassis and the vehicle as a whole with an aim to achieve high localisation of up to 95 per cent. The products developed on the MQB-A0-IN platform are based on extensive market research and intense focus on local requirements. Subsequently, ŠKODA AUTO Volkswagen India will assess the possibility of exporting vehicles manufactured in India to markets with similar conditions.
The newly established ŠKODA AUTO DigiLab India will support the core business of ŠKODA AUTO Volkswagen India Private Limited by developing digital and mobility solutions. In addition, a dedicated Software Development Centre has been established by Volkswagen IT Services India Private Limited in Gurugam and Pune to support ŠKODA AUTO’s IT requirements globally and develop digital solutions. The services as well as digital and mobility solutions developed by the two new organisations will benefit all Volkswagen Group brands in India. Both are integral to the INDIA 2.0 project – a ŠKODA AUTO-led market strategy for the entire Volkswagen Group in the Indian market.
ŠKODA AUTO Volkswagen India offers close to 30 models from five different Volkswagen Group brands in India. These therefore caters to a wide range of needs from compact models to SUVs and high-performance sports cars. ŠKODA first dipped its toes into the Indian market, exporting up to 90 vehicles a year to India, back in the second half of the 1930s. In 2001, the Czech brand made its first appearance on the Indian market with its own subsidiary; ŠKODA now offers four different model ranges – SUPERB, KODIAQ, OCTAVIA and the RAPID. Volkswagen current portfolio offers the Tiguan, Passat, Vento and the Polo. The company’s luxury range is represented by Audi and the brand offers A3, A4, A5, A6 and A8 saloons, the Q3, Q5 Q7 and Q8 SUVs, the sporty RS5 and RS7 as well as the R8 mid-engine sports car.
The groups marque brands – Porsche and Lamborghini each have their entire global model range on offer. At Porsche, these are the 718 Boxster and 718 Cayman, the Macan and Cayenne SUVs, the brand icon 911, the Panamera saloon and the new, all-electric Taycan. Lamborghini offers its sports cars, the Huracán and Aventador, and the Urus SUV.