Armored cars come in nearly all shapes and sizes, including a 1980s French hot hatch and an all-electric sedan, but usually these are limousines like a Pullman. Wagons are few and far between, but Skoda is now ready to sell a Superb Estate extensively modified to meet PAS 300 requirements for ballistic and blast protection. The Czech automaker part of the Volkswagen Group teamed up with a U.K.-based convertor for the unusual project, which turned out to be time-consuming as the armored midsize wagon was developed in three years.
While it may look virtually the same as the regular model, the armored Superb now features bullet-resistant glass, high-strength steel, and makes use of composite materials. The engineers also had to work on the suspension and brakes to cope with the increased weight of the vehicle (not mentioned, sadly). It takes about four weeks to build an armored Superb Estate and the specialty vehicle comes bundled with an emergency lighting and siren system in case something goes terribly wrong. Run-flat tires along with a control panel to turn on the extra lights and siren round off the changes.
Underneath the hood sits the standard 2.0-liter turbodiesel engine with 187 horsepower on tap, enough for a top speed of 120+ mph or about 20 mph less than the regular version. Still, not too bad. Skoda isn’t saying anything about how much time the car needs to hit 62 mph (100 kph), but obviously a lot more than the 8.4 seconds needed by the standard and much lighter Superb Estate.
However, there’s a problem – it costs £118,688 ($157,391 at current exchange rates). That makes it a lot more expensive than an E63 S Wagon ($106,950), for example, but the Mercedes-AMG hauler will be significantly more vulnerable to a terrorist attack. As with all its regular models, Skoda will be selling the armored Superb Estate in the U.K. with a three-year warranty.
Gallery: Armored Skoda Superb wagon
BALLISTIC AND BULLET RESISTANT ŠKODA OFFERS SUPERB PROTECTION
- PAS 300 certified civilian armoured Superb Estate developed by ŠKODA UK
- Based on standard Superb Estate 2.0 TDI 190PS
- Three-year development and engineering project for British based team
- Extensively modified body plus upgraded suspension and brakes
- On-the-road price from £118,688
- Watch the armoured Superb in action here: https://youtu.be/bhCzS_MLY3o
Milton Keynes, 29 May 2018 – ŠKODA is already known for its ability to build fantastically strong, safe and reliable cars. But now, following three-years of planning, development and testing, ŠKODA has added to its award-winning range with the addition of a bullet and blast-resistant version of the Superb Estate.
The armoured Superb is the end result of a joint venture project between ŠKODA and a UK-based convertor. Following three years of development is a finished model that is virtually indistinguishable from the standard production car yet offers bullet and blast protection to occupants.
Protection is provided by a combination of bullet-resistant glass, high strength steel and composite materials; yet despite this the fully armoured Superb retains its spacious five-seater layout cabin, large boot and acclaimed build quality.
The armoured car is based on a standard 2.0 TDI 190PS Superb Estate. Although exact details of the conversion must remain secret, the passenger cell has been reinforced to the extent that it meets PAS 300 requirements for ballistic and blast protection. This certification was carried out by an independent test facility and involved firing different types of ammunition at the vehicle and exposing it to blast and fragmentation threats.
The suspension and braking systems have been upgraded to account for the additional weight of the car, with the former modified to ensure safe and accurate handling at high speeds. Other features incorporated into the design include adaptations to the wheels that can continue to run even if the tyres are deflated – allowing the driver to get to a place of safety after a blowout – and an emergency lighting and siren system. The car also features an 8-inch touchscreen communications hub with GPS, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality.
The final on-the-road cost of an armoured Superb is £118,688, and, like all new ŠKODAs, comes with a three-year warranty as standard.