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Skoda Fabia RS Concept in sights

This sporty looking concept could make its way Down Under during the second half of 2010.

The Fabia RS Concept was revealed at the Geneva Motor Show last month and is being targeted as the best way to bring the Skoda starter car to Australia.

The RS uses the 1.4-litre TSI sports engine from the Volkswagen Group, with a combination of a supercharger and turbocharger, as well as a body kit which pumps the car out to a similar look to Czech company's latest S2000 rally challenger.

"We've said this is where we need to be with the Fabia to make it work in Australia. It's exciting stuff," says the head of Skoda, Mathew Wiesner.

"If we can get a hero car like that then it could be a better option, to feed the car in from the top down. Particularly given that many of our colleagues in the industry have been looking at going the other way."

The Fabia RS, which will be built under the company's V-sport division, is headed for the road in Europe next year and Wiesner would like to get it as soon as possible. The brand has just re-worked its Octavia range and is also planning for the arrival of the prestige Superb before the end of this year.

"The timing is 2010 in Europe so it would be the second half of 2010, at the earliest, for us," Wiesner says.

But work on the regular Fabia models is still stalling on prices, as Skoda would need to get the car well under the $20,000 price point and away from the Volkswagen Golf.

"Every time we've sat down and done the numbers it's been difficult.

And currency has made it more difficult.

"Once we've got more information on the RS we might re-think the Fabia strategy. We know how cars like this can go in Australia, with the cult following for cars like the Subaru WRX. It would be good to built that sort of cult status with a Fabia.

"We're not sure what engine will be in the car, expect that it will be a petrol motor and not a diesel."

Wiesner knows he also has the updated Octavia RS coming later in the year, with more punch with a 147 kiloWatt engine and DSG gearbox as well as some body changes, and believes the brand could take a different path in Australia.

"We need to do some better and smarter things with the larger cars we've got coming. The way we evolve here could be very different to the way Skoda is seen in Europe.

"RS is in the third quarter and Scout should be around then, hopefully. We're still waiting for confirmation, but the trick is to get the production lined up so we can do both at the same time."