How much would you have wagered on Skoda’s first ground-up electric vehicle being an SUV? I’m by no means a gambling man and hindsight’s a useful tool, but if bookies offered odds on such things, I reckon I could have made a fair bit of cash had I placed a bet or two.
Because really, it’s not much of a surprise that this all-electric Skoda Enyaq iV (not sure that sounds quite as good as Skoda thinks it might) is recognisably SUV-like in its proportions - even when wrapped up in its pre-production ghillie suit. After all, the Czech firm has made a name for itself as a pragmatic manufacturer of pragmatic cars for pragmatic people, so given the inexorable rise of the SUV, launching an electric one seems like a pretty pragmatic decision.
It’s a suitably significant one, too. The Enyaq is not only the first Skoda vehicle to be built on the Volkswagen Group’s new MEB architecture, with assembly set to take place at Skoda’s Mladá Boleslav plant, but it’s also the first MEB vehicle to be built outside of Germany. Given the likes of the Seat el-Born will be built at the same Zwickau plant as the VW ID 3, Skoda must see that decision as an encouraging vote of confidence from the group’s higher-ups.
At 4.65m long, the Enyaq sits staunchly at the other end of the size spectrum to the Citigo iV - Skoda’s first electric vehicle of any kind - and between the larger Kodiaq and smaller Karoq SUV models. There’s loads of passenger space front and back, and its 585-litre boot is generously sized, too, but one big benefit of its enlarged footprint is the fact that it has also enabled Skoda to fit the Enyaq with a battery big enough to lend it proper real-world range.
Technically, there are three different battery sizes and two different drive systems, which make for a complete line-up of five models. The Enyaq 50 represents the entry-level offering and uses a 55kWh battery to power a 148bhp three-phase synchronous motor mounted at the rear axle. This version comes with a WLTP-certified range of 211 miles, which isn’t outstanding but isn’t terrible, either.
Then there’s the Enyaq 60, which has a 62kWh battery, a 177bhp motor and a claimed range of 242 miles; the Enyaq 80, with its 82kWh battery, 201bhp motor and 311-mile range; and the Enyaq 80X and Enyaq vRS models. Those last two also use the biggest battery, but gain an extra electric motor at the front axle for all-wheel drive. While this increases their total system outputs (to 262bhp for the 80X and 302bhp for the vRS), range takes a bit of a hit at the same time: both are rated for 286 miles.
As for charging, all Enyaq models will be able to draw power from chargers rated as high as 50kW as standard - so expect to be able to top up an 82kWh model in around 1.5 hours on a rapid charger. That said, if you fancy paying a bit more money, faster charging capability will be available optionally, which seems like a fairly cheeky way of making a bit of extra money on a car that is already set to cost between £40k and £50k and will likely make the used market a bit of a nightmare to navigate. Choose it, though, and on a 125kW outlet, you can expect to charge the battery from 10% capacity to 80% capacity in around 40 minutes.