Skoda will launch two new products this fall – the Kodiaq and the Superb. The pair have just completed an intensive test regiment that evaluated the two new models in various climates, including the frigid Arctic cold and the scorching Arizona heat.
The Czech automaker begins virtual testing new models about four years before they go on sale. Real-world testing takes place about two years before a model launches. The Kodiaq and Superb traversed more than one million kilometres (621,000 miles) over two years, with the automaker simulating 40 years of real-world use via additional endurance and material assessments on test rigs and in laboratories.
Gallery: Skoda Superb, Kodiaq Teased
The two new models experienced temperatures ranging from -30 to 50 degrees Celsius (-22 to 122 Fahrenheit). The cars travelled north of the Arctic Circle while visiting Arizona, Spain, and Africa. In the Austrian Alps, the pair faced 13-percent inclines while driving the Grossglockner High Alpine Road, helping the automaker study the models’ brake efficiency and thermal regulation.
The tests in various climates also helped the Skoda evaluate the thermal behaviour of the brand’s new plug-in hybrid powertrain. The two will have PHEVs that offer more than 100 km (62 miles) of all-electric range.
We still don’t know what either car will look like from the outside, but Skoda revealed the pair’s cabin late last month. While both interiors are unique, they share some similarities, like their 10.0-inch digital instrument cluster and the free-standing 13.0-inch infotainment touchscreen. Each features a trio of smart dials, with screens, below the central HVAC vents.
Skoda has also released some specs for both models. The Kodiaq crossover will have a mild-hybrid 1.5-litre engine making 148 bhp, which the company routes to the front wheels through a seven-speed, dual-clutch automatic gearbox. A larger 2.0-litre engine is available, making 201 bhp with all-wheel drive. The plug-in hybrid will pair the 1.5-litre TSI engine with an electric motor for 201 bhp.
The Superb will have a similar powertrain lineup, including diesel engines. A 148-bhp 1.5-litre TSI engine propelling the front wheels will power the entry-level model. It’ll have a larger 201-bhp engine powering the front wheels and 261 bhp with all-wheel drive. The plug-in hybrid will make 201 bhp from its 1.5-litre TSI engine and electric motor.
It won’t be long until Skoda reveals the new pair of cars. The company says it’ll show the new Superb and Kodiaq this fall, which kicks off on Saturday 23 September. We might not see the Superb break cover until November.