Skoda boss Bernhard Maier told us "hybrids are something we are discussing for all of our product line-up - in the years to come there will be a transition phase. We strongly believe that a big number of our customers will be dependent on normal engines as well but the plug-in hybrid solution, starting with the Superb in 2019, is our plan - but there will be other models as well."
Skoda's new Kodiaq large SUV is an obvious candidate, given the hybrid powertrain in the VisionS concept it is based on, but with the VW Group's push for electric power arising from the dieselgate scandal in 2015 the Skoda range is set to host many new models with petrol-electric powertrains.
The new Superb, which is based on the MQB platform, is already set up for electric power - VW has already launched the Passat GTE, and the Superb could use the same 1.4-litre petrol and electric motor set-up, which produces 215bhp with economy of over 150mpg.
Speaking at Skoda's annual press conference, Skoda bosses also confirmed that a new all-electric model is on the way. At the moment, though, Skoda is sticking with hybrid power for the Superb. Maier told us: "We think that the market for [the Superb hybrid] is quite strong and that it's the best way to start."
One of the trade-offs with hybrid power is the large battery packs that are needed for the electric motors, which are at odds with Skoda's focus on practicality. "Our engineers are working to find the best solution for Skoda for hybrid technology. Whatever Skoda brings we will stand to our core values, irrespective of the engine we are looking at," Maier said.
Skoda's first plug-in hybrid will arrive in 2019, as part of the brand's 'Strategy 2025' expansion plans over the next decade.
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