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Skoda Kodiaq 2024: a 'beast' plug-in hybrid SUV

The automobile manufacturer Skoda has taken another step towards the electrification of the Czech brand with the launch of the second generation of the Skoda Kodiaq, the brand's largest SUV and which, for the first time, will have a plug-in hybrid version with more than 100 kilometers of electric autonomy.

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Skoda Kodiaq 2024: a 'beast' plug-in hybrid SUV

The automobile manufacturer Skoda has taken another step towards the electrification of the Czech brand with the launch of the second generation of the Skoda Kodiaq, the brand's largest SUV and which, for the first time, will have a plug-in hybrid version with more than 100 kilometers of electric autonomy.

It is the second model of the Czech brand to adopt plug-in hybrid technology (PHEV) after the Skoda Superb with the Combi family body, a version that is not yet available in Spain. In addition, Skoda already has two 100% electric models in its range (Enyaq and Enyaq Coupé) and has announced the launch of two more until 2025 (Elroq and Epiq).

The PHEV technology, which in Spain is awarded the DGT's ZERO environmental badge, is not the only great novelty of the Skoda Kodiaq. The second installment of the Czech SUV also debuts a 48V light hybridization version associated with a 150 HP TSI turbo gasoline engine, which represents the entry version of the model and to which the ECO label corresponds.

At the time of its launch, the Kodiaq's mechanical range is made up of two turbodiesel (TDI) engines, with 150 and 193 HP, in addition to the 150 HP light hybrid version. All three are associated with a 7-speed DSG dual-clutch automatic transmission, but only the highest-power TDI is equipped as standard with all-wheel drive.

The 204 HP plug-in hybrid variant will arrive in summer and before the end of the year a sports version, called Sportline, will go on sale with a TSI engine, also 204 HP, DSG automatic transmission and 4x4 traction, which will be the top of the model range.

We have just tested the new Kodiaq during the international presentation of the model on the Costa Brava (Gerona) and the first thing that caught our attention is its impressive size. The new Czech SUV, which adopts the brand's new design language with new Matrix Top Led headlights, is 6 centimeters longer than the previous model and now reaches a length of 4.76 meters thanks to larger front and rear overhangs .

Although it loses 2 centimeters in both width and height, the general impression is that we are looking at a powerful looking vehicle. The wheelbase has barely been stretched by 3 mm and now reaches 2.79 meters, so we do not see major differences in space inside, which was already quite spacious in the model that precedes it.

When we open the doors, we discover a very careful interior, with recycled and ecological materials, in which up to 7 people can travel if we choose one of the models with the configuration of three rows of seats, not available with the plug-in hybrid propulsion .

Access to the cabin is easy and comfortable thanks to the significant body height and the generous size of the doors. The third row of seats, however, is only suitable for children of average height who do not need to travel with a child seat.

We have driven the two versions that will sell the most in Spain, the light hybrid TSI and the TDI 2.0, both with 150 HP, front-wheel drive and 7-speed automatic transmission. We found both to be a good choice for the average Spanish driver who does not need too much power or four-wheel drive for everyday use. In both cases, the engine responds well, the automatic transmission is smooth and precise and driving feels agile if we do not travel with excessive weight in the rear rows and the trunk.

We have also tested the plug-in hybrid version of the new Kodiaq and the feeling it has left us has been even better. It has a 150 HP 1.5 TSI gasoline engine and an 85 kW (116 HP) electric motor that offer a combined power of 204 HP and 350 Nm of torque. This power, and this detail is important, is transmitted to the front wheels through a 6-speed DSG automatic transmission.

In 100% electric mode, the vehicle accelerates energetically thanks to a maximum torque of the electric motor of 330 Nm and easily reaches cruising speed on highways or motorways. As long as there is enough power in the battery, the ride is smooth, quiet and comfortable.

When the energy runs out, the system begins to function as a self-charging hybrid and the electric motor supports the combustion engine or replaces it completely when the necessary conditions are met. The best thing, and hence the importance of the DSG change, is the work performed by the 6-speed automatic transmission, which greatly reduces the noise of the gasoline engine if we compare it with the automatic CVT or continuous variator changes of conventional hybrids.

The high-voltage battery of the plug-in hybrid version has a (gross) capacity of 25.7 kWh and allows a purely electric range of more than 100 kilometers in the WLTP combined cycle and nearly 150 km in the urban cycle. The battery can be charged from 10% to 80% in 2.5 hours, with a maximum charging power of 11 kW on home wall chargers and alternating current (AC) charging points, so in little more than lasts a movie or a work meeting, we will have all the electrical energy again if we charge at home or at work.

If we go on a trip and want to recharge the battery en route with direct current (DC) fast charging, the maximum charging speed is 50 kW, so it will only take 25 minutes to recover almost all of the electrical energy.

The only drawbacks of the plug-in hybrid version are that it does not have the 7-seater option due to lack of space in the rear and that the trunk capacity is reduced to 745 liters, 165 liters less than the 5-seater TDI and TSI versions. and 100 liters less than the versions with three rows of seats. Even so, the interior space and cargo capacity are more than enough, as is usual in all Skoda models.

In terms of prices, the mild hybrid TSI version is available from 44,400 euros with the basic finish (Selection), while the 150 HP TDI can be purchased from 47,700 euros with the same finish, and the 193 HP TDI With 4x4 traction it starts at 50,450 euros. The price of these same versions with the Design finish has a linear increase of 3,000 euros and all are now on sale in the official Skoda dealer network.

The plug-in hybrid version of the new Skoda Kodiaq will be available for order starting in June and the first units will arrive in August. The price in Spain of the PHEV version is still unconfirmed, although it will be around 50,700 euros.

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