Following its global unveil in November 2021, Skoda has now commenced production of the Slavia at the carmaker’s plant in Chakan, Maharashtra. The Skoda Slavia, expected to launch by March this year, will be the third model under Skoda-VW’s India 2.0 project that started with the Kushaq and Taigun SUVs.
The Slavia will be the first all-new midsize sedan in the market over one-and-a-half years since the fifth-gen Honda City was introduced in June 2020. And while SUVs have dwindled down the sedan segment in India, the Slavia will be a fresh new option for buyers who are still interested.
- Available in three trims: Active, Ambition and Style
- Will be powered by 1.0-litre and 1.5-litre turbo-petrol engines
- Price announcement expected by March this year
Skoda Slavia: exterior and interior
The Slavia looks typically Skoda with a familiar design as the larger Octavia and the Superb. It has a wide, muscular stance, it also gets a healthy dose of chrome on its grille and front and rear bumpers. The Slavia will be the widest sedan in its class, and that should translate well for its interior space. Smart-looking LED headlamps and tail lamps with Skoda’s signature crystalline detailing, clean and sharp character lines and 16-inch dual-tone alloy wheels are some of design highlights of the Slavia.
On the inside, a 10-inch touchscreen infotainment system takes centre stage on the dashboard that has a nice layered effect with faux wood trims, piano black panels and a dual-tone black and beige theme. It also gets a touch-based climate control panel, similar to the Kushaq. The two-spoke steering wheel, similar to other Skoda models, and the fully digital instrument cluster with ‘Skoda’ embossed on the binnacle are noteworthy highlights of the interior.
In terms of features, top-spec variants of the Slavia will come equipped with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, MySkoda connected car tech, leather upholstery, ventilated seats, an electric sunroof, wireless charger, automatic climate control, keyless entry and an auto-dimming internal rear-view mirror. Safety features include six airbags, ESC, an electronic differential system (EDS), a tyre pressure monitor, hill-hold control (optional) and a rear parking camera.
Skoda Slavia: engine and gearbox details
Under the hood, the Slavia will be offered with a choice of two turbo-petrol engines, again similar to the Kushaq. The first is a 1.0-litre three-cylinder unit that produces 115hp and 175Nm of peak torque. There’s also a 1.5-litre four-cylinder turbo-petrol engine that produces 150hp and 250Nm of peak torque. A 6-speed manual gearbox will be offered with both engines. Automatic gearbox options include a 6-speed torque converter for the 1.0-litre engine and a 7-speed dual clutch gearbox (DSG) for the 1.5-litre engine.
Skoda Slavia: rivals and price expectation
As mentioned, the Slavia comes into a relatively dormant midsize sedan segment where its rivals will be the Honda City, Hyundai Verna, and the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz. With localisation of up to 95 percent, we expect the Slavia to be priced competitively, perhaps in the Rs 10 lakh-16 lakh (ex-showroom) range.
Volkswagen counterpart to follow soon
Similar to the Kushaq and the Taigun, there will also be a Volkswagen counterpart to the Slavia in India. Likely to be called the Virtus, the Volkswagen sedan will be introduced in March followed by a market launch in May this year.
The upcoming duo of sedans mark the second chapter of the Volkswagen Group’s India 2.0 plan. Together, the Skoda-VW siblings will provide a much-needed impetus to the sedan segment that has otherwise been forgotten due to the onslaught of SUVs from almost every manufacturer.
Do you think the Slavia will be able to make a mark in the sea of SUVs in India? Let us know in the comments below.