At the 2018 Paris motor show Skoda will fully unveil its most powerful and sporting diesel SUV to date, the new Kodiaq vRS. The company’s sporting intent has to be admired as it will also debut its Vision RS Concept at the show, demonstrating that the Czech manufacturer hasn’t deserted the performance end of the automotive sector.
The Kodiaq vRS is powered by a 2-litre biturbo four-cylinder diesel developing 237bhp and 369lb ft of torque. It’s the most powerful diesel engine in the company’s history and endows the Kodiaq vRS with a seven-second 0-62mph time as well as a top speed of 137mph. It also managed to haul itself around the Nordschleife in a whisker under nine and half minutes.
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That 2-litre diesel is mated to a seven-speed DSG gearbox and intelligent all-wheel drive with an electronic differential lock that can transfer up to 85 per cent of available torque to just one wheel or power the front wheels only when under light loads. There are four driving modes to choose from – Eco, Comfort, Normal and Sport – and these are linked to a ‘Dynamic Sound Boost’ system to provide a muted or sporting soundtrack in the cabin, depending on the active driving mode.
To back up its performance credentials Skoda describes the Kodiaq vRS as having ‘dynamic driving performance’ and its chassis features Dynamic Chassis Control with adjustable springs and shock absorbers to suit terrain and driving style. The driver has a choice of six different driving modes – Eco, Comfort, Normal, Sport, Individual and Snow – with corresponding settings for the suspension depending on the mode selected. The Kodiaq vRS also features progressive steering with its weighting adjusted according to road speed.
Backing up its performance potential are a new set of styling cues unique to the Kodiaq vRS. Bespoke front and rear bumper assemblies look suitably sporty while gloss back trim adorns the radiator grille, window surrounds, mirror caps and roof rails. The sporting look is completed by a set of anthracite 20-inch ‘Xtreme’ alloy wheels while there’s red detailing on the badging and brake calipers. Illumination of the road is provided by LED lights front and rear.
Inside, the sporting theme is continued with leather and Alcantara sports seats and door trim panels with contrasting stitching, while a smattering of carbon fibre trim adds to the ambiance. There’s a multi-function sports steering wheel along with a black roof lining and stainless steel pedals. A plethora of vRS badges remind you this is the performance version.
The vRS also comes with a Virtual Cockpit instrument display as standard with a sporting carbon look and a new fifth display mode featuring a centrally located large rev counter with a digital speedometer in its centre. Despite its sporting pretensions the Kodiaq vRS is as practical as other models in the range with a 600-litre boot capacity when in five-seat configuration and also comes with a third row of seats making the Kodiaq a seven-seater.