Track Cycling

Skoda’s Karoq Velo concept car has a built-in washing machine and drone – CNET

It’s nice to see a car built explicitly to help cyclists, rather than muscle them out of the way.


There aren’t a whole lot of concept cars out there that are meant to appeal to cyclists, who are usually locked in a bitter battle for asphalt with their four-wheeled frenemies. Skoda doesn’t care about those divisions, though, and its latest concept car speaks to that.

Skoda on Monday unveiled the Karoq Velo concept, a crossover dedicated to being the ultimate road companion for cyclists yearning for adventure. It’s loaded with all sorts of clever trickery that can help bike aficionados stay at their peak. In fact, two amateur cyclists have already taken it for a spin.

The Karoq Velo looks pretty much the same as the regular Karoq, save for some interesting livery on the body panels. Inside, though, things get a little weird. For example, there’s an integrated spin-cycle washing machine, which Skoda added after survey respondents bemoaned returning to the car with damp, sweaty clothes. There’s also a pressure washer on board to help cyclists clean off their bikes before slapping them back on the roof-mounted rack.

Those who took Skoda’s survey also complained about mechanical issues (their bikes, not their Skodas), so Skoda integrated a full tool kit into the concept, including tools to help seal punctures. LED lights allow people to work late into the night without having to hold a flashlight with their teeth. There’s even a magnetic landing pad for a drone, which can be used to track cyclists and film their ride.

Many of us in the States might not be aware of Skoda’s connection to cycling. This VW Group subsidiary actually started out making bicycles, so there’s no surprise that Skoda wants to bring cyclists into the fold. The automaker even established the Skoda Driver’s Seat Initiative Cycling Academy to help train up-and-coming female riders with the help of a gold-medal Paralympian. 

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