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by Tim Beissmann

Czech design house Benet Automotive has unveiled the Skoda Yeti-based Etape ute concept at the 2012 Leipzig motor show in Germany.

Working closely with Skoda Auto, Benet says the Yeti – a compact SUV in production form – is the perfect vehicle to demonstrate the firm’s customisation potential, which spans everything from major structural modifications to precise modelling work.

While still recognisable as a Yeti, the bonnet is the only original body part from the Etape’s donor car.

Benet managing director and Etape project leader Josef Zajicek says the concept’s cycling theme is a nod to Skoda’s long-term commitment to the sport, and is a metaphor for motorists wanting to “escape the peloton of serial production towards individuality”.

“We want to inspire individuals and the whole industry,” Zajicek said. “Our aim is to provoke even greater demand for individualisation of cars from both end user and manufacturers.

“At the same time we want to present the possibility of building a completely unique promotional vehicle to order to various companies.”

The wide-body Yeti ute sports an aerodynamic body kit, white and grey two-tone paint with black gloss trim inserts, flared wheel arches, large alloy wheels wrapped in low-profile tyres, dual exhaust outlets and a flat bed with room for two racing bikes.

Sparco racing seats, white leather and dashboard trim and contrasting red inserts bring life to the overhauled interior.

Don’t hold your breath for a production version of the Yeti ute, however, as Benet says the Etape is strictly a concept.




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