Skoda has announced that it will introduce a new small hatchback by the end of this year for the European market called the Scala. The hatchback is named after the Latin word that means a ladder or stairway and is based on the MQB A0 platform. This is the same platform that the Volkswagen Group plans to localise for our country by 2020.
The Skoda Scala will derive design cues from the Vision RS concept which was showcased at this year’s Paris Motor Show. The Czech carmaker has revealed that it will bear the the word ‘Skoda’ right in the middle of the boot lid instead of the company’s badge, a first for any production car from the brand. Bernhard Maier, chairman of the board of Škoda Auto, said, “With the new Škoda Scala we are proposing a new chapter in the compact class of ŠKODA. It is a completely new development that sets standards in terms of technology, safety and design in this class.”
In terms of features, the Euro-spec hatchback is expected to pack plenty of first-in-class features, some of which were only “reserved for cars in higher segments”, says the company’s official statement. Currently, it is the Rapid hatchback that bears Skoda’s flag in the European hatchback segment.
Currently, Skoda’s India lineup does not include a hatchback. The last and only hatchback that the company sold in the country was the was the Fabia, which was pulled out of production in 2013. For long, entry into the Skoda family has been quite expensive as their most accessible offering is the Rapid sedan, which starts at over Rs 8 lakh.
Under the India 2.0 plan, Skoda will localise the MQB A0 IN platform and use it as a base for multiple models. The sixth generation Volkswagen Polo is also underpinned by the same chassis and might make its way to India after 2020. It’s quite possible that Skoda, under its new product strategy for India, decides to bring the Scala here. However, it will have to rename the hatchback as Renault had a sedan named Scala in India sometime back.
No information regarding the engine options is available, but expect the hatchback to be powered by a 1.0-litre petrol and a 1.5-litre diesel engine from the fifth-generation Polo. Transmission options could include a 5MT, 6MT and the 7-speed DSG. If Skoda decides to introduce the Scala in India, expect it to reach our shores after 2021. Before that, Skoda will introduce a compact SUV based on the MQB A0 platform in India. This SUV, which is expected to be revealed in 2020, will rival the likes of the Hyundai Creta, Renault Duster and Captur and well as the recently-unveiled Nissan Kicks. It is likely to be followed by the new-gen Rapid sedan.