Cars are for both fun and status
One outcome of her work should be more smiles on the faces of ŠKODA’s Indian customers. “Our presence in India should bring local customers increased value and a product better-designed to local needs. ŠKODA is already seen in India as a strong European brand with a high-quality design. Thanks to us, our customers will now get a slightly more Indian version of the ŠKODA cars they already love,” Caroline says.
ŠKODA cars have become popular in India thanks to their design and attractive details as well as their practicality and safety. In practical terms, the design department has to deal with some details that Europeans just would not expect. The air-conditioning in Indian cars is very important, for example.
“The air-conditioning outlets are an important subject – they have to look strong and functional,” says Caroline, adding that cars’ air-conditioning units run pretty much at full power all the time in the Indian heat. “For me, it’s too cold in the car. I turn the air-con off, but Indians like it that way,” designer laughs.
Caroline Liehr with Head of Interior Design Norbert Weber and Kateřina Vránová, Color & Trim coordinator at ŠKODA Design
Another specific point is the use of leather. You would have thought that leather would be forbidden on the local market, given that cows are sacred. But that’s not the case. “The leather must not come from Indian cows. But here too, leather is seen as a luxury item and customers like it,” the designer explains a surprising detail in the high segment cars.