Skoda's Yeti ready for Indian climb

Volkswagen-owned Czech car maker Skoda is planning to introduce its sports utility vehicle 'Yeti' in India, besides looking at launching an advanced version of its sedan Laura, when the car will be relaunched in India by June this year.

"We are currently conducting tests on Yeti to see its suitability for India. We want to bring the car to India. However, the car will be launched in India only after it is introduced in Europe," said Karsten Bogun, managing director, Skoda Auto India, speaking on the sides of the Geneva Motor Show.

Skoda unveiled the SUV at the Motor Show and the vehicle will be launched in the European market in the next few months with a 1.2 litre petrol engine and a 2.0 litre diesel engine.

For the Indian market, Yeti's engine capacity would be tweaked and could come with a 1.8 litre petrol engine, he said. Yeti is likely to be priced in the sub-Rs10 lakh bracket, promising a complete SUV experience at a price much lower than the established foreign auto brands  like Honda CRV and Chevrolet Outlander.

The company is also considering powering the Laura with a new 2.0 litre diesel engine. "We are thinking of a 2.0 litre diesel engine for the Laura in India. Final decision will be taken when the new Laura will be launched in May-June," Bogun said. Laura was launched in India in 2005 with a 1.9 litre diesel engine.

The company sells Octavia and Superb, besides the Laura, in the sedan segment in India. It also sells the premium hatchback Fabia.