Skoda electric models to stand out with unique lightstrip

Skoda’s forthcoming range of electric vehicles will retain a front grille but be distinguished from internal combustion-engined models by a bold, full-width lighting strip, according to company boss Bernhard Maier. 

The design was previewed by the Vision iV SUV shown at the Geneva motor show in March and will be retained for the production version due next year. That car will be Skoda’s first model built on the Volkswagen Group’s MEB electric platform. 

Maier said the production design will feature a single LED light strip that links the headlights and splits the grille into upper and lower sections. 

“This is the new expressive crystalline design language,” said Maier. “Glass working has been a Czech specialism for centuries, so this is something that is authentic.” The lighting strip will be made of Plexiglass to save weight. 

Another changed styling feature of the Vision iV production car will be the adoption of a conventional grille. The concept featured a ‘phantom’ grille but, despite no longer being needed for engine cooling, the slatted grille will remain, with Maier citing feedback from customers who said they liked the design. 

The production Vision iV will also be sold with a choice of three battery packs and two motor configurations. This is in line with other VW Group electric cars being built on MEB, such as the forthcoming Volkswagen ID hatch. 

Battery packs of 49, 60 and 82kWh will be introduced over the vehicle’s life, with the biggest battery offering a 300-mile WLTP range. The model will launch with the 49kWh battery and one other, but which has yet to be decided. 

As standard, the Vision iV will be rear-wheel drive with a single motor, but higher-spec models will be offered with a front-mounted motor providing all-wheel drive. 

Maier says the two-motor version is “more agile” than the single-motor model. To keep costs down, the Vision iV won’t feature a reduction gearbox, which could increase top speed. “That’s why we limit it to 112mph. Not having a separate gearbox will be very good for the vehicle cost,” said Maier.

Skoda boss Bernhard Maier on…

Using the iV badge for electric cars 

“All our electric and electrified vehicles will get the suffix iV, including the Kodiaq and Superb plug-in hybrid. It is not easy to find the right label for new technology. There are already a lot of names used by the competition.” 

The final name for the Vision iV 

“The name is not quite clear. We are still working on that. We have some real interesting ones, which perfectly fit our overall nomenclature.” 

Launching 10 EVs by 2022 

“Our basket is full of arrows. I hope all will hit the spot. We have a total of 30 new models by 2022. This is a truly amazing product offensive.” 

The possibility of a hot Kamiq vRS crossover 

“We haven’t decided. There could be an opportunity but we have to decide on the most important priority. As things stand, we cannot produce enough cars.”