CZECH manufacturer Skoda is looking ahead to the summer by releasing prices and spec details for its all-new hatchback - even though the order books will not be opened for a couple of months.
Priced from £16,595, the Scala will replace the Rapid Spaceback and go head to head with the likes of the Ford Focus and Vauxhall Astra in the ultra-competitive mid-sized hatchback marketplace. Dealers will start taking orders in May with first deliveries expected in the summer.
Three engine options will be available from launch - two petrol and one diesel - with power outputs ranging from 115PS to 150PS, while a lower-powered 95PS petrol engine will arrive later.
Ultimately, the petrol range will consist of two one-litre TSI units with 95PS and 115PS and a 1.5 TSI engine with 150PS while a 115PS TDI engine will provide the diesel option in an ever-shrinking market for oil-burners. All engines, with the exception of the lowest-powered petrol unit, will be available with an optional seven-speed DSG transmission.
Skoda promises a high level of standard spec across the company's now familiar S, SE and SE L trim grades.
Despite its status as the entry-level model, the S variant - which will arrive later in the summer - will come with 16-inch alloy wheels, LED headlamps, leather-wrapped steering wheel, gear and handbrake covers, height adjustable driver's seat, air-conditioning, DAB digital radio, front and rear electric windows and an infotainment system with a 6.5-inch screen. Safety tech across the range will include front assist, lane assist, a speed limiter and emergency call with proactive services.
The mid-range SE model, priced from Â£18,580, adds cruise control, rear parking sensors, an eight-inch touchscreen for the infotainment system, height adjustable passenger seat and Skoda's unique integrated umbrella.
Priced from £20,380, the SE L flagship models will have what Skoda claims is one of the most comprehensive specification lists in its sector including an Amundsen infotainment system with 9.2-inch glass touchscreen, digital cockpit, climate control air conditioning, keyless entry with start/stop and a colour, multifunction trip computer.
The new Scala is positioned between the recently updated Fabia and Octavia models in Skoda's new-look range and the company claims sector-best levels of rear headroom and boot space.