Skoda may not be aggressive like Volkswagen with EV launches every few months, but it has at least three new zero-emission models this decade to keep EV prospects tuned in. The company’s CEO Thomas Schafer confirmed at the Skoda Annual Press Conference 2021 in March that the next new Skoda electric car (excluding derivatives) would be a model smaller than the Enyaq iV.
Asked if the next all-new Skoda EV will likely be an ID.3-sized hatch, Schafer said that the next model will indeed be smaller than the Skoda Enyaq iV. The company chief didn’t disclose the body style of that model, though.
Yeah, we are working on the next model smaller than the Enyaq, that’s true, but it would be too early to say what shape that car would be.Thomas Schafer, CEO, Skoda (Skoda Annual Press Conference 2021)
Crossover look for the ID.3-based Skoda EV
According to a report from Autocar, the first upcoming electric car Skoda plans to launch below the Enyaq iV (and Enyaq iV Coupe) would sit on the MEB platform with dimensions similar to the VW ID.3. Skoda may distinguish it with a completely different top hat, one with a crossover-like look and more interior space in similar dimensions.
Skoda would focus on the space and practicality of the compact EV to make it more desirable than the ID.3 and the Cupra Born. Oliver Stefani, Head of Design, Skoda, told Autocar that luggage space will continue being a priority while designing its future electric cars. “People love it (spaciousness), and it’s not something we want to give up,” the designer said.
Skoda usually tries to squeeze out the maximum space and ends up having spacious sister models to VW cars. The Enyaq iV is the latest proof of that. At 2,765 mm (Sportline: 2,767 mm), it has nearly the same wheelbase as Volkswagen ID.4 (2,771 mm), but it offers 585 litres of boot space. That’s 42 litres more than the boot space of the Volkswagen model (543 litres). The new generation Fabia from the combustion engine family is another example.
Compact EV is not the Skoda Elroq
Volkswagen and Skoda are christening new names for MEB platform-based EVs. The companies don’t want these to be incorrectly perceived as conversions of existing products, as they are developed from scratch. New names allow marketing them as revolutionary products, with the possibility of creating a new brand icon. The company is yet to decide the name for the smaller EV it plans to launch after the Enyaq iV Coupe, Schafer has confirmed.
Skoda trademarked a new name – Skoda Elroq – earlier this year. Autocar later asked Schafer if the company plans to name the upcoming compact EV Skoda Elroq. In response, Schafer said that he’s “not convinced.” He continued that the company is unlikely to decide its name for 12 more months, as it is the last step of releasing a new product in the market.
We are in the process of finding a suitable name for this and we haven’t quite gotten to that point. I’m quite happy to report that we have made the hurdles of you know making the decisions on moving forward and doing it, but the naming is the last step that we’ll probably decide not in the next 12 months.Thomas Schafer, CEO, Skoda
Baby Skoda EV a technical twin of the VW ID.2
Volkswagen Group has confirmed a new budget EV family that will include several B-segment hatchbacks and SUV models. At the 2021 Munich Motor Show (IAA 2021), its Volkswagen brand unveiled the VW ID. Life concept that will evolve into a production small SUV in 2025. This model, possibly called ‘VW ID.2,’ will have a Skoda sibling, CEO Ralf Brandstatter confirmed at the event.
Sister models (of VW ID. Life’s production version) for Cupra and Skoda are also planned. While Volkswagen will provide the platform and technology, Seat will develop the cars and CARIAD will deliver the software. We will build our new compact family most likely in Spain, and we also intend to localize battery production there.Ralf Brandstatter, CEO, Volkswagen brand (VW ID. Life world premiere at IAA 2021)
Speaking to Handelsblatt a few weeks after the motor show, Schafer said that the company plans to launch a small electric car with “an independent, space-oriented vehicle concept.” His words probably mean that the Skoda EV will differ from its sister models by stretching to the maximum possible dimensions, with a stronger focus on space, practicality, and value for money.
The Skoda small electric SUV will come off the MEB entry platform or MEB-Lite platform. Officially called ‘MEB short’ platform and also ‘MEB eco’ platform, it’s basically a modified version of the MEB platform to suit small cars. Power goes to the front wheels instead of the rear wheels, and, with a 57 kWh battery pack, a range (WLTP) of around 400 km (249 miles) is possible.
Schafer said at the annual press conference this year that if Volkswagen Group is working on such a platform, Skoda wants to be a part of it. He suggested that the MEB entry Skoda EVs need not necessarily come out of a Skoda factory.
If the group’s working on that you know we want to be part of this. We are the brand that plays very very strongly in that segment anyway, in the ICE, in a normal segment, but we also see our future there. So, we will fight for this and we will work with the group on this. Will it be built in Czech Republic or anywhere else, that’s not quite clear yet now.Thomas Schafer, CEO, Skoda (Skoda Annual Press Conference 2021)
In an interview with auto motor und sport in January 2021, Schafer had indicated that future Skoda EVs wouldn’t be limited to SUVs. “Our e-portfolio cannot only consist of SUVs in the long term,” he said. Following the Enyaq iV last year, Skoda plans to unveil the Enyaq iV Coupe this year.
To make the VW ID.2 project feasible, the MEB platform would need to become less sophisticated and the batteries would need to become cheaper. The development and production costs would seem feasible only if they have the potential to generate high volumes, which would largely depend on the pricing. Technical cousins from Skoda, Cupra, and Seat brands can be of help; the more, the merrier.
Skoda Octavia Electric
The third EV in the lineup is the Skoda Octavia Electric which the CEO confirmed during the Skoda Strategy 2030 event on June 24, 2021, as launching in liftback and combi versions. It would utilize the MEB platform.
Battery & Range
The two new Skoda EVs slotted below the Enyaq iV are unlikely to be short-range EVs like the Mazda MX-30 EV (200 km/124 miles)* or the Honda e (222 km/138 miles)*. Skoda won’t cut corners in the powertrain department despite lower prices in the entry-level models, Schafer indicated during a conversation with Auto Express in July 2021. The company chief was talking about a small EV with a starting price of under EUR 20,000. He said that 350-400 km (217-248 miles) is a “reasonable range” for such a product. The ID. Life concept Volkswagen unveiled later can achieve a range (WLTP) of about 400 km (249 miles).
Next, the compact EV slotting between the sub-EUR 20,000 EV and the Enyaq iV may get two-three different lithium-ion battery pack options with a usable energy content of as much as 77 kWh. In that case, expect a maximum range of up to 525-550 km/326-342 miles*.
The small Skoda EV costing under EUR 20,000 onwards could get a mix of lithium-iron-phosphate and lithium-ion battery pack options. It is no news that Volkswagen Group plans to use a new unified cell format and the cost-effective LFP cell chemistry for the battery packs of the MEB entry models. The company hasn’t talked about the possible energy content of the MEB entry’s battery packs. Still, thanks to Schafer’s statement, we at least have an estimate of these models’ range.
MEB Entry models not for the driving enthusiasts
Volkswagen Group’s small EVs may not be a driver’s delight, especially to those who want added control over the experience, with, say, a stick shift and driver assistance systems not specified or turned off. Driving enthusiasts are not the target group, Volkswagen brand’s new R&D chief Thomas Ulbrich said, as per a new report from Automobilwoche. Future EVs will appeal mainly to “customers who consciously use assistance systems to increase safety and relax behind the wheel.”
Upcoming Skoda EV models FAQs
How many Skoda future electric cars are to release?
Skoda teased & confirmed 3 new electric cars for the decade at the ‘Next-Level Skoda Strategy 2030’ event on June 24, 2021.
What are the 3 upcoming Skoda electric car models?
They are expected as derivative models of the VW ID.3, the upcoming VW ID.2 & an all-new Octavia EV on the MEB platform.
When are the Skoda electric cars expected on the market?
All 3 models should launch by the end of 2026. These don’t include variants like the Enyaq iV Coupe or the Sportline.
Featured Image Source: Skoda