Currently reading: Skoda eyes Karoq vRS to rival Seat Ateca Cupra
Skoda boss Bernhard Maier says there is “obviously a demand” in a vRS SUV, but the final decision is yet to be made.

A hot Skoda Karoq vRS performance SUV could be the brand’s next vRS badged model, according to boss Bernhard Maier.

The Karoq is a compact SUV that Skoda is targeting squarely as a practical family car, but company CEO Maier said they could respond to demand for a performance version to be made.

Speaking at the launch of the Karoq SUV in Sweden, Maier said: “We have from our we have from our customer base very clear feedback that there is obviously a demand in having an SUV with our vRS logo as well, and that has all the ingredients which make the Skoda a vRS."

“We are investigating. We have not made a final decision as of yet. But there might be at least a substantial discussion about that.”

Read about the Skoda Karoq's reveal here

The development comes following reports that called into question the future of the vRS brand. The Skoda Fabia vRS hot hatch was discontinued for this generation of the supermini. Two generations of Fabia vRS were made, but now the only remaining vRS model in the Skoda range is the Skoda Octavia

If the Karoq vRS were to make it to market, it’d likely share the same 300bhp turbocharged four-cylinder engine as is found in the Seat Ateca Cupra; the closely related cars would also be each others’ main competitor in the still fledgling hot SUV market. The Volkswagen T-Roc R would also fall into the same category. 

Such a niche product would be a bold move for Skoda, whose brand usually focuses upon practicality and family-friendliness, although being one of the pioneer cars of the segment would be positive for the Karoq vRS’s sales prospects.

Maier also said that a hybrid Karoq could be developed. Skoda will launch its first plug-in hybrid, a version of the Superb, in 2019. Maier added: "The [MQB] platform [the Karoq is built on] is prepared for that, but there's no decision made so far. Until we launch the plug-in Superb we have enough opportunities to really check and balance what car is ready for the market at that time."

Read more: 

Facelifted Skoda Octavia vRS revealed

Skoda vRS models under threat

Skoda baby SUV to take fight to Nissan Juke


Read our review

Car review

Skoda's mid-sized SUV is smaller than some but goes big on practicality features and still offers both diesel engines and mechanical all-wheel drive

James Attwood

James Attwood, digital editor
Title: Acting magazine editor

James is Autocar's acting magazine editor. Having served in that role since June 2023, he is in charge of the day-to-day running of the world's oldest car magazine, and regularly interviews some of the biggest names in the industry to secure news and features, such as his world exclusive look into production of Volkswagen currywurst. Really.

Before first joining Autocar in 2017, James spent more than a decade in motorsport journalist, working on Autosport,, F1 Racing and Motorsport News, covering everything from club rallying to top-level international events. He also spent 18 months running Move Electric, Haymarket's e-mobility title, where he developed knowledge of the e-bike and e-scooter markets. 

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eseaton 19 May 2017


We all know they are not.

It is intensely annoying to read this nonsense day in and day out.

Thekrankis 19 May 2017


Clone surely......
gavsmit 19 May 2017

Citigo vRS

I'd much rather see a Citigo vRS. Or Fabia vRS. Or even a Rapid vRS before an SUV vRS.