• Feb 13, 2008


click above to view more high-res images of the Skoda Fabia S2000

The name Skoda might not jump out on this side of the Atlantic, but on the opposing shore, the Czech automaker is known for a rich history in rally racing that stretches back over a hundred years to the roots of motorsports. Volkswagen's acquisition of the brand in 1991 meant that Skoda had more funding to properly compete in the World Rally Championship against well-funded works teams like Subaru and Mitsubishi, but Skoda ended up pulling out in 2005 in favor of the more budget-friendly production-car-based Super 2000 formula (Note: PDF link). The formula calls for a 2-liter, normally-aspired engine with no more than 280 horsepower driving all four wheels through a standardized six-speed sequential gearbox with no electronic gizmos.

With that kind of rally-driven focus, it's no wonder that Skoda showed a racing concept version of its new Fabia alongside the production model at last year's Geneva show. Now almost a year later, Skoda has come a long way in developing the new car. Far enough, anyway, to give us some mouth-watering new images of the car, which looks something like the lovechild of a JCW MINI and a Ferrari 575 GTC Evoluzione. Pretty badass, any way you cut it, but don't take our word for it... check out the images in the gallery below (and the press release after the jump) and judge for yourself.

[Source: Skoda]

PRESS RELEASE

ŠKODA AUTO STARTS TESTING FABIA SUPER 2000

Škoda Auto has started testing the first prototype of the Škoda Fabia Super 2000 today. Designed to be used in the Super 2000 category, the vehicle is based on the second-generation Fabia and, in compliance with the FIA regulations, is equipped with a two-litre atmospheric four-cylinder petrol engine, a six-speed sequential transmission and a four-wheel drive system with three mechanical differentials.

Commenting on the occasion, Dr. Eckhard Scholz, Škoda Auto BOD Member responsible for technological development, said: "We are glad to have started testing the Fabia Super 2000. This year we are planning to optimise and certify the vehicle so that we can use it on both national and international levels. When exactly will the vehicle be released for competition use will depend on the achieved progress, relevant test results and the final certification. Then we are also planning to offer the vehicle to private teams. Based on a customer service arrangement, further development work on the vehicle will be done in close cooperation with our importers worldwide".

Martin Lauer, Head of Corporate Communications, adds: "The history of over hundred years of involvement in motorsport is unique, and we are proud to be able to continue the success story with the Fabia Super 2000. We believe that the vehicle will become a successful part of this tradition, because car racing is popular all over the world and offers great opportunities to promote our products".



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 23 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      "equipped with a two-litre atmospheric four-cylinder petrol engine"

      Atmospheric is my new favorite euphamism for Naturally Aspirated
      • 6 Years Ago
      2 liter N/A 280 HP
      damn, wish my 2.7 got close to that

      cool looking, i'd drive that over a mini, as is...
      rather say 'my SKODA' over 'yea its my mini.' also.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I think Honda might have an issue with S2000.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I like!
      • 6 Years Ago
      "Well the Skoda brand has a very negative connotation in Europe. It's almost up there with Lada."
      ---------------------------------------------------------

      http://www.topgear.com/content/carsurvey/2006/
      http://www.topgear.com/content/features/stories/2005/11/stories/01/1.html

      Shows how little you know.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Thay must have realized they'd been had with an old photo...

      As for the Skoda, how come we can't have an econobox that looks like that?
      • 6 Years Ago
      That is really interesting, I wasn't aware that Skoda's brand image is still so bad in certain countries while they are performing so exceedingly well for years now all over Europe in general.

      @Andrew/@Dextro
      Could you possibly point me to any recent sales or market share figures for Belgium or Norway? I just googled a bit and only found the very positive numbers for Germany, Austria, the UK, Spain and all of central/eastern Europe.
      Would you describe Skoda's image in your countries as "exotic crap" (as in Lada) or "omnipresent crap" (as in Fiat until recently), in other words, is it just the image that is cheap or bad, or are sales also very low?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Sorry ... tabbed browsing gone bad :-)
      • 6 Years Ago
      Well the Skoda brand has a very negative connotation in Europe. It's almost up there with Lada. That should give you an idea.

      They did their absolute best to make it look as much as a Mini as possible. I've even seen several with a white or even a chequered roof and ditto mirrors.

      The production model is ugly as hell. I had a look at one recently at the Belgian Auto Show in Brussels and they have a very poorly constructed interior.
      But that seems to be the trend in a lot of new cars i noticed. Everything is plastic, they don't even try to make it look like something other than plastic nowadays.
        • 6 Years Ago
        @Dextro

        You are just a brand hater.... not more not less

        Skoda is doing extremly well in Europe. At the moment they are 7th(+1.2%) best selling brand in Germany. Better as every asian manufactor. (best asian is Toyota only ranking at 10th place with a big drop of -10.5% in selling numbers)

        • 6 Years Ago
        Where have you been the past ten years :D?. Ever since the first Octavia was presented after they were bought by VW, Skoda has been performing very well. The cars are good, always offer better value for money than their respective VW counterparts, sometimes even with better build quality. Their marque image in Germany, Austria, Switzerland (and as far as I know most of eastern Europe, too) is right up there with Opel, Ford, the French and the Japanese and has been for years (since the introduction of the Octavia II, at any rate).

        The one issue where im with you, though is that the quality of the interior seems to get worse since the Roomster and Fabia II, but that, sadly, seems to be a general industry trend in that price range.

        Cheers
        Markus

        (who, you guessed it, is happily driving a 2007 Fabia I wagon with VW's awesome old 1.9l/100hp PD-TDI...48mpg, anyone :D?)
      • 6 Years Ago
      Two years ago, I painted the wheels of a green audi I had yellow, to give the blah styled car a little umph. I tried to sell it in the midwest and got no takers. But, put it online for sale and someone on the east coast bought it. This rally style may take a while to take hold.

      http://projectcarsforsale.com/
      http://www.vprojectcar.com
        • 6 Years Ago
        This is a new low. I've seen some bad comment spam in the past, but spamming PARKED PAGES?!

        Please, take yourself out of this world and save us all some misery.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'd like to see more rally style vehicles in the US. They are just beginning to become popular here with the advent of quality video cameras installed on rally race cars.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Yea I wanted to come back and fully look at the Mitsu.
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