It’s one of the worst kept secrets in motoring, but Skoda has confirmed that its new seven-seat SUV will be called Kodiaq. It will sit above the Yeti in the Skoda range and is expected to arrive in 2017, following a public unveiling at the 2016 Paris Motor Show.
The name refers to the Kodiak bear that lives on a remote island off the southern coast of Alaska, with the spelling derived from the language of the indigenous people – the Alutiiq.
There were rumours it might have been called the Snowman, with talk of a possible Grand Yeti. But the name of the large SUV was all but confirmed when Skoda registered the Kodiaq name earlier this year.
It follows the launch of the VisionS concept at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show. Skoda is remaining tight-lipped about the production version, but we do know it will be based on the Volkswagen Group MQB architecture, sharing its platform with the likes of the Golf, Tiguan and Superb.
At 4.7 metres long, the Kodiak is similar in size to a Hyundai Santa Fe, making it ideally placed to seat seven people in comfort. By launching the car with the strapline ‘discover new ground’, Skoda is hinting at full-fat four-wheel-drive variants, but two-wheel-drive versions are likely to be offered. Expect a range of petrol and diesel engines.
Given the success of the Yeti, it’s safe to assume Skoda could be on to a winner with the Kodiaq. The compact crossover has been a great success for Skoda, with an extended feature on Top Gear, lengthy waiting lists and top marks in satisfaction surveys amongst its highlights. Skoda will be aiming for a similar result with the Kodiaq.
Expect prices to start from around £25,000 when the car arrives in the UK in 2017. We’ll bring you more news on the Skoda Kodiaq live from the 2016 Paris Motor Show in October.