New fire-breathing SUV revealed

Skoda is bringing its ferocious Kodiaq RS SUV down under.

The Czech brand, which is owned by Volkswagen, has announced the long-awaited sporty seven-seat SUV will be made available in Australia.

Previously the company had blocked the sale of the vehicle locally because the Skoda rated Australia's climate too hot. The higher heat rating meant the car's cooling set-up was not considered adequate.

Skoda has downgraded Australia’s climate description to “moderately hot”.
Skoda has downgraded Australia’s climate description to “moderately hot”.

However, the brand's local arm has managed to downgrade the European-based company's view of Australia's climate moving from "hot and dusty" to a more accommodating "moderately hot".

Volkswagen has been using the same hot climate excuse for selling Australians watered-down versions of the Golf R. The current hot hatch has 15kW less than European versions.

However, the move by Skoda opens the door for VW Australia to unleash the Golf R's full potential.

The new Kodiaq RS gets a spritely 2.0-litre twin-turbocharged four-cylinder diesel engine (176kW/500Nm) powering all four wheels. A sizeable jump over the current most powerful model the 132kW/320Nm petrol-powered Kodiaq Sportline.

The Kodiaq RS is powered by a beefy twin-turbo diesel engine.
The Kodiaq RS is powered by a beefy twin-turbo diesel engine.

That amount of grunt is enough to propel the family SUV to 100km/h from a standstill in seven seconds.

The addition of the diesel engine signals a change of tack for the Volkswagen Group which has moved away from diesel in the wake of the emissions scandal. Skoda currently has no diesel options available on its local website.

The Kodiaq RS also holds the record for the fastest seven-seat SUV around the Nurburgring, a racetrack known as the performance benchmark around the globe.

Skoda's local boss, Michael Irmer, says the company has put in a big effort to get the Kodiaq RS approved for Australia.

The RS will be available to order from late 2019.
The RS will be available to order from late 2019.

Since its launch, we have been working tirelessly to bring the Kodiaq RS to our shores," says Irmer.

"The project to bring the high-performance bi-turbo diesel-powered Kodiaq RS has seen collaboration between Australian and Czech technical teams sharing data and know-how. It is because of their shared passion for the Škoda brand, and this exciting car, that we can finally offer an RS-spec SUV."

Some sporty features for the RS are 20-inch alloy wheels with red brake calipers, black side mirrors, roof rails and grille, along with RS badging and logos throughout.

The Kodiaq RS has a plush interior.
The Kodiaq RS has a plush interior.

Skoda Australia hasn't revealed prices, but it is likely to be in excess of $60,000. All Skoda vehicles are backed by a five year/unlimited km warranty.

The Kodaiq RS will be available to order from late 2019.

The standard Kodiaq was named News Corp's car of the year in 2017.



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