The hatchback showcases the look of the Czech company’s forthcoming Ford Focus-rivalling Scala, which will replace the Rapid in its line-up. It also features elements that preview the look of future performance vRS models – despite there currently being no plans for a Scala vRS – and showcases Skoda’s new plug-in hybrid (PHEV) powertrain.
The PHEV unit in the Vision RS combines a 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine with an electric motor to offer a total output of 242bhp. While the specifications are likely to change, the powertrain is expected to be similar to that in Skoda’s first production PHEV model, the facelifted Superb due late next year.
Skoda has yet to confirm other models that will receive plug-in hybrids, although ever-tightening CO2 emissions legislation means it could quickly be adopted across much of its range, particularly the Scala and the next Octavia. Skoda has already told Autocar the next Octavia vRS could feature a hybrid powertrain.
Autocar had the chance for a brief drive in the Vision RS concept. While the test took place at slow speeds, it was a chance to get a taste of the near-future of Skoda’s powertrains, with the firm aiming to offer five electrified models within the next two years.
How the Vision RS previews the Scala - and the future of vRS
The Vision RS showcases Skoda’s latest design language, and gives a hint at how the forthcoming Scala will look. Just as significantly, it also contains features that hint at the future of the vRS performance line, according to exterior designer Dalibar Pantucek, who says: “the target was to make a sports car in a modern way.”
The concept is 4356mm long - just over 50mm longer than the Rapid - 1810mm wide and 1431mm high, with a wheelbase of 2650mm. It sits on 225/35 20-inch Michelin tyres.