Skoda has just shown off a version of its latest Karoq Velo concept car that’s supposed to make us bike folk jump up and spend our hard earned cash on a mid-size SUV.
Given that Skoda has been a long time partner of the Tour de France, we guess the timing of this release is quite deliberate.
Editor’s note, September 2019: since this news story was published, we’ve had the chance to take the Skoda Karoq Velo for a drive.
As part of its research, Skoda conducted a survey of 1,500 British cyclists and used the results to outfit the bike-centric automobile.
According to the survey about a quarter of respondents were annoyed about sweaty kit when returning to the car, so Skoda has built in a miniature spin cycle washing machine — though a drying rack or one of those spin dryers you find at a public pool or an air compressor probably would have been a better use of space.
While the washing machine is a bit silly, a feature we can get behind is the built-in powerwasher.
Skoda tells us that it draws from the same water supply as the washing machine and would be ideal for giving dusty or muddy bikes a rinse before you load up.
Skoda also says the car has a ‘tool kit,’ which appears to be a couple of multi-tools and mini pumps. On the bright side, there’s built-in LEDs so you don’t have to get your buddy to hold their bike light for you while you try and straighten your handlebars.
The car has room for three bikes — two on the roof and one inside the car — and even fully loaded there is still room to seat three adults.
In the front, the centre console has been converted into a mini-fridge, perfect for keeping your bottles and snacks cool.
There’s also a magnetic landing pad for a ‘Follow Me drone’ so you can get some epic footage of your ride, and Skoda has even built in a WiFi hotspot so your Instagram story will never expire.
Skoda says the Karoq Velo is a one-off, but it will be appearing at events around Europe this summer. While the Karoq Velo has some features that would be useful to riders, and some questionable ones too, what would you put in a ‘Velo’ concept car? Let us know in the comments below.