Czech automaker Škoda completed successful extreme-cold testing of its new-generation Superb and Kodiaq models in the Artic Circle.
In temperatures as low as minus-30 degrees Celsius, the fourth-generation Superb and second-generation Kodiaq SUV underwent examination on how super-cold conditions impact the vehicles’ driving stability, passenger comfort in icy conditions, overall reliability during long winter journeys and ability to withstand the extra weight of ice and snow.
“Real-world testing in the toughest possible environmental conditions remains a crucial part of new-vehicle development, despite the advances in computer simulation,” said Johannes Neft, Škoda Auto Board member for technical development.
The vehicle testing also provides early detection of areas where vehicle design may be improved for everyday operation, Neft added.
Every part of the test vehicles was scrutinized: chassis, body, engine, heating, and the entire electrical system at temperatures of minus 25 degrees Celsius. In addition, the engine must start without problems at temperatures close to minus 30 degrees.
Vehicle behavior was assessed during real-world driving conditions, for example, operating on icy or slushy roads, hitting snow barriers. Driving over blocks of ice tested the robustness of the suspension and underbody.
The testers evaluated the cars’ driving dynamics, the performance of the all-wheel drive, if applicable, and the functional characteristics and ride comfort of the suspension. They checked transmission shift functioning and the vehicles’ lighting at night. High-voltage batteries of PHEV vehicles were charged in a frozen state, maximum range determined.
The testing also evaluated interior functions, such as the heating system and window defrosting. In addition, the imapact of extreme cold on driver assistance systems were examined.
The new Superb and the second-generation Kodiaq will premiere globally in the fall.