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Skoda Rapid won’t step on Golf’s toes

Curve ball: Skoda is not going after Golf sales with the Rapid, and is "looking for a different spin" instead.

Volkswagen Australia boss says new Skoda Rapid is not a Golf rival

8 May 2014

VOLKSWAGEN says the new Skoda Rapid Spaceback is in no significant danger of clashing with the Golf.

Though there are some drivetrain, pricing and specification overlaps between the related small cars, the two hatchbacks are pitched at different buyers looking for different priorities in their vehicles.

This, at least, is according to Volkswagen Group Australia managing director John White, who was speaking at the Rapid Spaceback’s launch in Byron Bay this week.

“We look at it differently within the group,” Mr White said. “Skoda is beneath Volkswagen… it has its niche worldwide and so it has a different set of competitors and a different set of buyers.

“There may be some overlap in the higher end models… but we have a different technology offering in the Golf.

“A Golf customer is more of a premium buyer, we’re looking for something a little bit different (with the Rapid Spaceback).” Echoing Mr White’s sentiments, Skoda Australia director Michael Irmer added that his company is promoting its newest arrival in a different manner that is appropriate to the product.

“We’re looking for a different spin with the Rapid – it’s for someone who wants to try something different, something that embraces (his or her) personality and individuality,” he said.

“It is about concentrating on our strengths. I understand that this is the first small car in Australia for Skoda and it will take a few years to establish the Rapid.

“But we will evolve the product further and nurture it in the future.”

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