Published: Sun, December 09, 2018
Money | By Ralph Mccoy

The Czechs introduced the hatchback Skoda Scala

The Czechs introduced the hatchback Skoda Scala

Launches in the first half of 2019.

The preview images suggest the Scala will be more upmarket than the budget-focused Rapid, with more soft-touch materials in the cabin and the choice of decorative trims for the dashboard and centre console. Depending on the model, the Scala rides on wheels measuring between 15 and 18 inches in diameter.

Skoda is going upscale in Europe's compact vehicle segment with the Scala hatchback, which will go on sale in the first half of next year. The full panoramic glass roof with electrically retractable sunblind is optional. The new Skoda Scala will compete with the VW Golf and the Ford Focus upon launch.

Talking about the auto unveiled, it is 4362mm long, 1793mm wide, 1471mm tall, and has a 2649mm wheelbase, making the Scala larger in every way than the Rapid it replaces. And there's a large boot (467 litres; 1,410 with the rear seats folded) - something you expect- or take for granted- from a Skoda these days. Three trim levels will be available in the United Kingdom market with features like a panoramic sunroof, an eight-speaker sound system, Wi-Fi hotspot, 3D satellite navigation, wireless smartphone charging, 64GB of internal SSD storage, and downloadable apps for the infotainment system.

The new model is based on Volkswagen Group's ubiquitous MQB platform and it has grown in all dimensions, including length (4362mm, +58mm) width (1793mm, +87mm), height (1471mm, +12mm) and wheelbase (2649mm, +47mm).

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Engine line-up for the United Kingdom is yet to be confirmed but the global range includes three 1.0-litre or 1.5-litre TSI engines and a 1.6-litre TDI with power from 94 to 148bhp. A more powerful 1.5-litre, four-cylinder petrol motor with 148bhp will round off the petrol line-up. The Scala gets a single diesel engine option, which is a 1.6 L unit producing 115 PS and 250 Nm. A seven-speed dual-clutch transmission is also available on the diesel and more powerful petrol variants. The option of a Sport Chassis Control is also made available, though it is optional. This sportier version will also offer four driving modes for better throttle response and steering.

A notable design trait is the the large rear windscreen with wide Skoda lettring, a look which should make its way into more of the brand's cars.

Safety wise it features up to nine airbags, LED head and tail-lights as standard, Multi-Collision Brake and Crew Protect Assist that automatically closes all windows and pre-tensions the front seatbelts in the event of an impending crash.

The Skoda Scala hatchback will be available in 3 trim levels - S, SE and SE L. The hatchback is equipped with several driver assist features like autonomous emergency braking, lane keep assist, adaptive cruise control, rear-view camera and automatic park assist.

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