Karoq is Skoda's new

baby SUV

Skoda Karoq, 2017, side
Skoda Karoq, 2017, front
Skoda Karoq, 2017, rear

CZECH car maker Skoda has released the first images of its new compact SUV, the Karoq.

The car will be launched later this year and will join its larger sibling, the Kodiaq, in the Skoda line up.

Skoda says the Karoq offers exceptional space in the interior and boot, plus new driver-assistance systems, full LED headlights and - for the first time in a Skoda - a digital instrument panel.

It comes with five engine variants and features Skoda's rear-seat VarioFlex system, a virtual pedal for the hands-free opening of the boot.

The new SUV has a luggage compartment capacity of 521 litres with the back seats in place. With the rear seats folded down, the volume increases to 1,630 litres.

In combination with the optional VarioFlex rear seat, the boot space is variable and ranges between 479 and 588 litres. The seats can also be completely removed giving the Karoq van-like space with a maximum loading capacity of 1,810litres.

As far as engines go the Karoq comes with five variants - two petrol and three diesels

The two petrol engines and two diesels are new in the line-up. The displacement ranges are 1.0, 1.5, 1.6 and 2.0 litres and the power range is from 115bhp to 190bhp.

All drivetrains are turbo-charged direct injection units and feature start-stop technology and brake energy recovery.

With the exception of the most powerful diesel, all drivetrains can be ordered with a six-speed manual gearbox or seven-speed DSG automatic.

The 2.0 TDI 190bhp diesel model comes as standard with 4×4 drive and the seven-speed DSG box while the new 1.5 TSI petrol variant is fitted with cylinder deactivation to boost economy.

The Karoq will come with an array of driver assistance systems including lane departure controls and a traffic-jam assist mode as well as automatic emergency braking.

Towing limit is two tonnes and the vehicle can be fitted with Skoda's trailer assist function to help when reversing slowly and manoeuvring.

Although heavily camouflaged in the pictures Skoda has released, the Karoq looks very much a scaled-down version of the Kodiaq and will compete in the booming crossover market alongside the SEAT Ateca and Renault Kadjar.

Prices have yet to be announced.

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