By Stewart Smith on 2016-03-10 - Stewart was the former motoring editor of the Coventry Telegraph and is now a freelance contributor to Eurekar. He is based in Scotland and specialises in First Drive reviews.
Skoda cult car
returns to Geneva
IT'S 50 years since Skoda introduced the 1000 MBX De Luxe five-seater with rear engine and rear wheel drive which represented the pinnacle of the one-litre class in its day.
The MBX was based on the mass-produced four-door Skoda 1000 MB, which featured a modern monocoque body and the engine was installed behind the driven rear axle.
Skoda built an entirely new plant in the vicinity of the existing factory buildings in Mlada Boleslav in the Czech Republic for the construction of the Skoda 1000 MB at the beginning of the 1960s.
The new production plant comprised modern facilities with more than 40 production halls and other buildings on the 80 hectare site.
The Skoda 1000 MBX De Luxe was first presented to the public at the opening of the Geneva Motor Show on March 10, 1966.
The model delighted the visitors with the originality of its shape and the car is now back on display at this year's Geneva show.
The two-door model gave the impression of not having a central pillar with its extensively glazed surfaces.
In fact, the centre pillar ended in the middle of the vehicle body under the window line, and its narrower upper portion could be rolled down together with the rear side windows.
The car also featured an innovative pop open fuel filler cap which was part of the Skoda badge on the front wing.
It was powered by a four-cylinder petrol engine with a displacement of 988cc and had an output of 52bhp and could reach a top speed of 80mph.
Today the model is among the most sought after and highly valued vintage cars with significant appreciation in value. Just 1,403 were built with production ending in 1968.
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