Skoda to launch first plug-in hybrid in 2019
Christian Strube, Skoda Board member for Technical development, said: “We are convinced that it is time for Skoda to become electric. With the Superb, we will launch a car onto the market as early as this decade that, as a plug-in, can travel more than 50km [31 miles] electrically and a few years later, Skoda will launch a purely electrical car onto the market.
Although details are limited, it’s likely that the Superb will feature a version of the drivetrain used in the VisionS concept car shown at Geneva last week, itself a development of the technology used in Volkswagen’s GTE models and the A3 e-tron – all of these use the same platform as Skoda’s flagship model.
This combines a 1.4-litre, 154bhp petrol engine with a 40kW electric motor, through a six-speed DSG transmission. However, it’s unlikely that the Superb will feature the electric rear axle used in the VisionS.
The Superb will be one of 20 new Volkswagen Group plug-ins launched by the end of the decade, as confirmed with a change of R&D focus at the end of 2015.
Among these will be the first fully electric Audi and Porsche models and a Phaeton EV, which will offer over a range of over 300 miles and rapid charging ability. The group will also launch a line-up of new models based on the new ‘electric toolkit’ – a standardised set of drivetrain parts enabling plug-in hybrids to travel further, and a high-volume EV with a range of 180 miles.