Skoda's Twindoor: An innovative all-in-one trunk and liftback

Click image for a gallery of the new Superb's Twindoor system

Czech automaker Skoda unveiled its new 2009 Skoda Superb (based on parent company VW's Passat) at the Geneva Auto Show this week. It's a great-looking car that represents an excellent execution of the platform, but that's not what makes it so eye-catching. We were more intrigued by that trunk... or is it a liftback?

The Superb features an innovative combo trunk/tailgate system that Skoda calls the "Twindoor." Its design allows the hatch to be opened like a conventional trunk, or like a rear hatch. The clever 'lift-trunk' sports not one, but two small releases in the same general spot that a single trunk release would normally be found. Press the button in the center, and it opens as a conventional trunk with spring assist. Press the button on the right, and it opens as a rear hatch with strut assist. Opened wide as a hatch and with the seats folded, the Skoda Superb has 565 liters of cargo space (our math says that's about 20 cubic feet).

The Skoda Twindoor deserves merit. It is a brilliant idea that we hope catches on with other manufacturers, hopefully on this side of the Atlantic. However, it does leave us wondering if we are witnessing the first signs that sedans are also evolving into that abyss of vehicles classified as the CUV. Thanks for the tip, Johanes!


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