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Skoda cranks up production of Superb wagon

Wagons roll: The Skoda Superb Wagon is destined for our shores next year, probably with a choice of three engines.

The practical Skoda Superb wagon could arrive in Australia as soon as next April

Skoda logo30 Nov 2009

By JAMES STANFORD

SKODA has started production of the Superb wagon that will go on sale in Europe in the next few months ahead of its Australian launch in the second quarter of next year.

Revealed at September’s Frankfurt motor show, the new variant of the large flagship Superb is called the Combi in Europe and Estate in Britain, but will be known as the Superb Wagon in Australia.

Skoda’s Kvasiny plant in the Czech Republic has started producing left-hand drive models and will add right-hand drive cars in the next month.

Skoda Australia is yet to confirm the engine and transmission line up for the practical hauler, but GoAuto understands it will match that of the Superb sedan.

That means the wagon will be available with a 1.8-litre turbo petrol four-cylinder, 2.0-litre turbo diesel four and 3.6-litre V6 petrol unit. All engines will be teamed with the VW Group dual-clutch DSG automatic with either six or seven gears, depending on the engine.

It is not yet clear if the wagon will be available with both the Ambition and Elegance model grades or whether the V6 variant will be available with the constant all-wheel drive option as it is in Europe.

29 center imageThe new wagon shares many of its exterior dimensions with its sedan sibling.

Both are 4836mm long and 1817mm wide, but the wagon is 48mm taller at 1462mm.

With the rear seats in place, the wagon has 633 litres of space, 68 litres more than the sedan.

When the rear seats are folded, the wagon opens up a cavernous load area of 1865 litres, 195 litres more than in the sedan.

To make the wagon as easy to use as possible, Skoda is offering an electronically controlled tailgate that open or closes at the touch of a button. It is not clear if this will be available as standard or as an option on Australian cars.

The wagon also features a sliding floor that can be moved out over the rear bumper to ease loading of heavy or awkward items.

Two lights built are into the tailgate to illuminate the ground around the rear of the car as well as the load space. A third LED light in the wall of the boot can be used as a torch. It has a magnetic body which allows it to be easily placed in the car’s body.

Roof rails are standard in the UK market and are available in black or chrome.

Skoda is offering a new keyless entry and start system that uses an impulse transmitter to unlock the vehicle when the transponder comes within a short distance of the car.

This allows the customer to unlock the vehicle simply by touching the door handle and to start the vehicle by pressing a button near the steering wheel.

A large, electrically controlled, two-piece panoramic sunroof is available as an option.

The 1.8-litre four-cylinder turbo petrol model will kick off the Superb wagon range. This engine generates 118kW at 4500-6200rpm and 250Nm at 1500-4500rpm. Next up is the 2.0-litre turbo diesel which manages 125kW at 4200rpm and 350Nm at 1750-2500rpm.

The range topping wagon will run the 3.6-litre petrol V6 which produces 191kW at 6000rpm and 350Nm at 2500-5000rpm.

Since its local launch in July, Skoda had sold 83 Superbs to the end of October, including 21 in the past month.

The company declined to estimate how many Superb wagons it expects to sell.

It also refrained from commenting on prices and whether there would be a premium for the wagon version.

The Superb sedan range starts at $42,990 for the 1.8 Ambition and runs through to the 3.6 Elegance 4x4 at $56,990.

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