NEXT GEN SKODA MAY LAUNCH IN INDIA BY 2020

The current-gen Skoda Octavia has had a long run in India. First introduced in 2013, the model received a makeover in 2017. The next-gen Octavia will be revealed only later this year, although Indian buyers will not have to wait all that long to buy one. Zac Hollis, Skoda Auto India’s sales, service and marketing head, confirmed that the new Octavia will go on sale in India within 2020 – months after it’s made available in European markets. The next-gen Skoda Octavia will sit on an updated version of the VW Group’s MQB platform and will be slightly larger than the outgoing car. As before, notchback and estate body styles will be on offer.

However, spy pics suggest that the notchback’s design will be more conventional sedan-like, even though the large rear hatch opening will be retained. The new Octavia is expected to sport the brand’s latest design cues as seen on the Skoda Scala hatchback and Kamiq SUV sold abroad. It’s possible that the outgoing car’s split-headlight setup could be given a miss and the grill might be sleeker and wider. The new Octavia will feature LED lights all around and higher variants are expected to come with the same Matrix LED headlight tech that will also make its debut on the refreshed Superb soon.

At the back, the Octavia might not get a Skoda logo but it will have the brand-name mentioned in full, just like the Kamiq and Scala.  On the inside, the new Octavia is likely to be more premium with better-quality material and a long list of features like voice control, head-up display and soft-touch materials. Expect the dashboard layout to be similar (to some extent) to the one seen on the Skoda Scala.  Under the hood, the new Octavia will come with a long list of petrol and diesel engine options, globally. Skoda is likely to offer a 48V mild-hybrid on some engine options.

For India, the new Octavia is likely to come with a 1.5-litre TSI turbo-petrol engine. Skoda is also studying the viability of upgrading the 2.0-litre diesel to meet BS6 emission norms. The new 2020 Octavia will take on the likes of the Honda Civic and the Hyundai Elantra in our market. The Toyota Corolla is likely to have been pulled out of the Indian market by the time the new Octavia goes on sale next year.

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