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First official pictures of the China-made Skoda Rapid leak out

Published on January 22, 2013 by W.E. Ning

First official pictures of the China-made Skoda Rapid leak out

The first official pictures of the China-made Skoda Rapid have leaked out. The Skoda Rapid is made in China by the Shanghai-Volkswagen joint venture, it will debut on the Shanghai Auto Show in April and it will be launched on the Chinese auto market around the same time. Pictures show the vehicle in some sorta green-gray-ish color which makes the already boring car even less exciting.

First official pictures of the China-made Skoda Rapid leak out

The Skoda Rapid is basically the same car as the new Shanghai-Volkswagen Santana and the FAW-Volkswagen Jetta. Price for the Skoda will start around 80.000 yuan. Engines are the same for all: a 1.4 with 89bhp or a 1.6 with 109bhp, mated to a five-speed manual or a six-speed automatic.  Size: 4501/1706/1469, wheelbase is 2603 and curb weight is 1160kg.

The three vehicles need to attract new buyers that are now mostly buying Chinese or Korean-GM. Volkswagen doesn’t seen to care the cars will compete with each other, figuring they will compete even more with other auto makers.

First official pictures of the China-made Skoda Rapid leak out

Buyers in this segment don’t like any fuzzy-wuzzy design stuff, they prefer an automobile that works and brings them from A to B. Volkswagen so seems right in keeping the design conservative. But they might have gone too far by making three similar vehicles each as boring as the other. Cutomers will get confused and buy that cheap Chery anyway, because it has shiny alloys, or a roofrack.

First official pictures of the China-made Skoda Rapid leak out

Rapidly moving to the top of the Boring List.

Pics via: iFeng.

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  1. Anon- January 23, 2013 Reply

    VW seem to be going ever further down the badge engineering route which led to disaster for GM.

    Marques such as Oldmobile and Pontiac ceased to mean anything to consumers as they realised they were just Chevrolets.

    Consumers are waking up to the fact that VW=SEAT=Skoda=Audi and this is likely to destroy brand identity over time.

    Yes they are very profitable now, but so was GM in the 1980s and 1990s.

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