The announcement came via a Facebook teaser image which shows the Rapid due in January, Octavia liftback in March, and Octavia wagon in June. The three remaining ‘mystery’ models will each debut in August, September and December.
An obvious candidate for a third-quarter launch is the new-generation Octavia vRS, which is expected to utilise the new Volkswagen Group 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder which debuted in the Golf GTI Mk7. The sporting five door liftback will likely score 169kW, a full 22kW higher than the outgoing model.
The remaining models are less clear, but may include facelifted versions of the Superb and Yeti, both of which are expected to pick up sharper styling cues to fall in line with the new Rapid and Octavia.
A long shot for a late-year launch is the Rapid coupe. Previewed by the Vision D concept (above), the three-door Skoda will be a cut-price Volkswagen Scirocco to rival the Hyundai Veloster and Kia Cerato Koup in the $25-40K bracket. The top model – with a 2.0-litre turbo four – will compete with the Golf GTI three-door in price. Where the production Rapid hatchback has a longer bootlid, the Vision D concept shows off a shorter, flatter lid with a raked roofline.
The Rapid coupe, however, is more likely starter for 2014.
Locally, Skoda will first introduce the Citigo, its version of the Volkswagen Up! sub-light hatch, in the second quarter, with Rapid and Octavia to follow later in the year.