Currently reading: Autocar confidential: Skoda, Koenigsegg, Renault, Kia
Our reporters empty their notebooks to round up this week's gossip from across the automotive industry

This week's gossip from the automotive industry brings news of Koenigsegg's customer waiting times, Skoda Kodiaq design struggles, Renault's future wheels and Kia's desire to move away from 'premium'.

Koenigsegg's waiting times

Koenigsegg is looking into increasing production capacity to reduce customer waiting times. Answering a fan question on its Twitter feed, Koenigsegg said the current waiting time for a new vehicle is around two and a half years, once deposits have been paid, but added that it is “looking to increase production”.

Read more: Koenigsegg One:1 Nürburgring crash car will go for record againKoenigsegg One:1 review

Skoda Kodiaq design struggles

The design team behind the new Skoda Kodiaq SUV, led by Josef Kaban, spent the longest amount of time working on the rear of the car. “It was a challenge, but a rewarding one,” said Kaban. “It took a long time to get to the right point, but we wanted an SUV that was typically Skoda – not just rugged but elegant as well.” 

Read more: 2017 Skoda Kodiaq prototype review2017 Skoda Kodiaq shown in new pictures ahead of Paris motor show

Renault's future wheels

The Renault Scenic and Renault Grand Scenic’s standard 20in wheels may set a precedent for other Renault models due to their efficiency benefits, striking looks and ease of set-up, according to design boss Laurens van den Acker. He said fitting 20in wheels across the entire range made things easier for engineers. “Instead of multiple chassis tunes or one compromised one, all cars are optimised for big wheels,” he said.

Read more: 2016 Renault Scenic TCe 130 Signature Nav review2018 Renault Mégane RS to get 300bhp and EDC auto option

Kia's brand image

Despite its cars being of an ever higher quality and offering plush top-spec trim levels, Kia is at pains to distance itself from wanting to be seen as ‘premium’, unlike many other mass-market car makers. “We’re not premium. We’re generalist,” said Kia’s European design chief, Gregory Guillaume, “but being perceived as having a premium design is a good position to be in.”

Read more: 2017 Kia Rio full specifications revealedKia Niro review


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Skoda jumps into the SUV market with both feet — and seven seats, but can the Kodiaq win the people's hearts in an already congested SUV market?

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Bullfinch 27 September 2016


If Kia is perceived as 'premium' that's it, it's premium. The term is ridiculous and intentionally impossible to define (beyond the fact that the margin's are larger). It has nothing to do with quality, capability or - for sure - exclusivity. If owners think they've bought something special then that's about as good a definition of special as exists.
sirwiggum 27 September 2016

Big wheels, so bye bye to

Big wheels, so bye bye to spare wheels - even a 20 inch spacesaver isn't really doable in anything but a lorry.

All well and good until a puncture leaves you stranded, the tyre foam is no good against a broken sidewall.

LP in Brighton 27 September 2016

Never mind, the big wheels will still look good!

And don't forget there's an extra profit opportunity for Renault when customers accidentally kerb them, or drive too fast over speed bumps. So it's win win all round (except maybe for the customer).
LP in Brighton 27 September 2016

Efficiency benefits of big wheels?

I think what Renault means is production efficiency rather than fuel efficiency. Big wheels are inherently bad in stop start driving due to their large inertia requiring more fuel to accelerate them and a lot of wasted energy to stop them. Pus of course, their large unsprung weight (and low profile tyres which accompany them) means more difficulty in achieving an acceptable ride. But hell, who cares - they look good and sell cars.