It’s rare to see actual rebadges in today’s world. Mostly, cars people call “rebadged” are a lot more than a grille swap and some new wheels. Usually they share mechanical components and architecture, but not actual body anels
That isn’t true in this case.
Behold the 2001-2006 Skoda Superb, which is precisely identical to the Volkswagen Passat in basically every way. How they thought this would fly is absolutely beyond me, though they may have hoped that changing the tail lights meant no one would notice.
Well, I did notice, and I’m appalled. (Which means I will write this article and probably never think of the car again, except whenever someone says the word “superb.”) Presumably, the Eastern Europeans who comprise Skoda’s target market didn’t have such a negative reaction, since Volkswagen actually sold a version of the Superb in Europe with a Rolls-Royce Phantom-style umbrella in the door. So your chauffeur can shield you from the rain as you step from your Passat clone.
Anyway, the latest Superb is much different than the Passat, which is a vast step forward for the company. And there’s a silver lining: if you have a B5.5 Passat and you live in a non-Skoda Superb market, you can probably do a full conversion. Slovakian immigrants would be impressed. Especially if you had that door umbrella.