Of course, there's no question the Kodiaq is late to the SUV party. Mostly, the Volkswagen Group's mainstream brands have been unusually casual in mobilising to capitalise on booming sales in the segment around the globe, which are up more than 20% year on year, according to latest JATO analysis.
But mobilising it is. From the arrival of the Seat Ateca to the Kodiaq to a raft of Nissan Juke rivals from all its brands, the VW Group is finally set to deliver the goods in the fastest-growing and highly profitable SUV sector. It's good news for customers who like more choice, and company accountants will surely be rubbing their hands with glee.
There were enough hints dropped at tonight's launch to be confident that the Kodiaq is just the start for Skoda. A Kodiaq coupé is confirmed, albeit initially for the Chinese market only, and an overdue revamp of the Yeti and the launch of a Juke rival will swiftly follow.
Aside from sales and profits, these cars will give Skoda two key new dimensions.
Having almost doubled market share in Europe in the past decade, it can look to accelerate growth again. More sales mean more visibility, which means acceptance. No wonder company officials speak confidently of the brand's cars being considered by more car buyers than ever and point to record expressions of interest in buying a Kodiaq as evidence of that.
The Kodiaq will also spearhead opportunities in relatively small and new markets for Skoda. It's as close to a sales hit certainty as you'll get for the big car-loving Chinese market and should do well across the key Asia, India and Russia regions. Significant growth in those markets alone could energise Skoda's profits and therefore potential for further investment.
What to do with that income, should it come? New models and new tech will swallow much of it, of course, especially as the car industry braces for automation and digitalisation. But it also raises the possibility of Skoda taking on new frontiers, including the VW Group's greatest, recurring bugbear: the US.
Company officials have already admitted such a move is being evaluated and the logic to it is certainly reinforced by the arrival of the Kodiaq, which fits with customer demand so well.
Historians and lovers of irony may have a field day if the Czech brand cracks the US, but if Skoda were to do it, then it would be the result of great products, great planning and a well-defined strategy built around the no-nonsense pillars of value for money and practicality, plus a forward-looking attitude to technology.
If nothing else, in an industry awash with big boasts, huge egos and broken promises, that would be a welcome success for common sense.