Skoda Rapid Overview
On the face of it, the Rapid, Skoda’s version of the Vento is the perfect example of what Volkswagen ownership has done to the Czech manufacturer. The latter landed here a decade ago and created a name for itself with the Octavia. Other models like the Laura, Fabia, Yeti, and Superb strengthened the brand further. But it’s the acquisition by Volkswagen that has really changed things around for Skoda. And their latest product in India, their first C-segment car, is a perfect symbol of this successful amalgamation. Is it a Fabia with a boot slapped on or is it the Vento with a Fabia nose? We go to Jaipur to find out and see if the Rapid is Skoda’s best bet yet in this segment. Skoda Rapid in Tryaldrive
Skoda Rapid Design & Style
The sedan is built on the similar platform as of Volkswagen Vento and differencing both of them sometimes becomes tricky. The car continues to sport the same face which was launched back in 2016. The design team has carried forward the front fascia from the Mk3 Fabia which is on sale in the global markets. The smokes projector headlamps with daytime running LEDs and signature butterfly grille are the main highlights on the front. The 2018 Edition goes a step further and deploys black finishing on the grille which makes the car look really cool.
The bumper design also remains the same which was revamped in the last update. The bumper houses a set of cornering fog lamps while the bonnet perfectly gels with the front fascia with its own strong creases, emphasizing its own aggressiveness.
The side profile is also carried forward with the same shoulder line running across the length of the vehicle. At this point, the similarities with Vento become more outward. This isn’t a bad thing at all given the Vento itself has a clutter-free design. However, what’s considerable this time is the addition of new 16-inch dual-toned machined alloy wheels in 2018 Edition which adds up to the style quotient. Other variants continue to sport the same 15-inch wheels. The glossy black finish on the ORVMs and the contrasting black roof complements the car in a perfect manner.
Coming to the rear, practically there hasn’t been much this time. A minor chrome strip boot can be seen with an eagle eye only while there is smoked effect on the tail lamps. The slightly redesigned bumper has been carried forward from the previous model. And don’t forget that cute little lip spoiler which really pleasing to eyes. Overall, the already good looking Rapid has now become slightly better.
The cabin inside is in line with the familiar cars such as Polo and Vento. Everything from the dashboard, placement of buttons and switches and even the door pads are reminiscent to siblings. However, the introduction of black piano theme has certainly raised the premium appeal. Other variants continue to be available in the classy beige and black or ebony-sand theme. The red contrast stitching on the seats in the top-spec Rapid lends it a more sporty character. The car has also been bestowed with a lot of chrome across the cabin.
The layout is pretty reasonable and takes much less time to get accustomed. And the tilt/reach and height adjustability of the steering is a clear evidence of how comfortable one can get in no time. The steering is donned in leather and is the perfect size for the car. It also features audio, call and cruise controls. However, the carmaker has finally responded to the demand for flat-bottom steering wheel after getting a lot of feedback from customers. The multi-information display gives host of information including distance traveled, travel time, instant fuel efficiency, average speed, distance to empty, outside temperature, average fuel efficiency, service interval, clock as well as gear-shift indicator.
The center console shows the same substantial layout featuring a pair of AC vents, automatic climate control interface and the same 6.5-inch touchscreen infotainment. The slick touchscreen is now powered by Android Auto and Apple CarPlay and paired with 4-speakers which give quality audio output. This along with MirrorLink collectively serves the purpose of Skoda’s SmartLink infotainment, all which enables the driver to use the devices safely. The infotainment also displays the visuals from the rear parking camera. Other variants continue to sport the 2-DIN audio system along with USB, Bluetooth, Aux-In and card reading functionality.
The automatic air conditioning unit gives you no reason to complain. The system swiftly manages to cool the cabin in quick time. And with rear aircons, the passengers at the back wouldn’t grumble about the hot weather either. The rear seating space is a little bit cramped compared to rivals and the low-set flat bench doesn’t do justice to the comfort level. However, the backrest can be reclined at a comfortable angle while the rear armrest lifts up the comfort factor a notch. The fifth passenger will definitely find the leg space annoying, so if you are looking for long journeys, make sure you don’t let the fifth passenger inside.
Other comfort aspects include height adjustable driver’s seat, one-touch automatic operating power windows, cruise control, automatic front wipers, automatically-dimming rear-view mirror and cooled glovebox among others. The latest update does add a little breath to the interiors. However, it isn’t a radical departure from the previous version.
Skoda Rapid Engine & Gearbox
The Skoda Rapid sedan is powered by two engine options, a 1.5 TDI litre diesel and a 1.6 MPI litre petrol. The 1.6 litre petrol engine generates 104 hp of power from 5,200 rpm to 5,250 rpm and 153 Nm of torque from 3,750 rpm to 3,800 rpm. The 1.5 litre TDI diesel engine churns out 109 hp of power at 4,000 rpm and 250 Nm of torque from 1,500 rpm to 2,500 rpm. Power is sent to the front wheels via a choice of automatic and manual transmissions offered on both engines.
The Skoda Rapid has a choice of manual and automatic gearboxes. A 5 speed manual transmission is available on the 1.6 litre MPI petrol and 1.5 litre TDI diesel engine optIons. The 1.5 litre Style variant which is powered by the diesel engine comes with a 7 speed dual clutch DSG automatic transmisssion. The petrol engine automatic variants get a 6 speed torque convertor unit with Tiptronic function for the feel of a manual transmission.The Skoda Rapid hatchback has a claimed fuel efficiency/mileage of 15.41 km/l for the petrol engine options and 21.13 km/l for the diesel engine manual transmission options. The 7 speed DSG automatic diesel trims have a claimed figure of 21.72 km/l
Skoda Rapid Ride & Handling
Similar to the sibling Vento, the suspension is tuned for excellent damping all around. And even there is a bit of crashing and beating through bad roads, the ride quality does not unsettle and remains rock solid even at highway speeds. The car feels flattered at the corners with least body roll.However, the steering is a little vague through the curves and bends but it is light and precise. At driving at city speeds, it is considerably heavy as against rivals such as Maruti Ciaz and Hyundai Verna.
Skoda Rapid Safety & Security
The Skoda Rapid hatchback has dual front airbags and ABS (Anti-lock Braking System) as standard. The higher trims also get Hill Hold Control, immobiliser, fuel cut off in case of a crash, reverse parking sensors and rough road package
Skoda Rapid Ex-Showroom Price in Bangalore ranges from 8,47,410/- (Rapid 1.6 MPI Active Petrol) to 13,59,190/- (Rapid 1.5 TDI CR Style AT). Get best offers for Skoda Rapid from Skoda Dealers in Bangalore. Check for Rapid price in Bangalore at Carzprice
Skoda Rapid Verdict
Skoda has been making decent cars right from the beginning, and Rapid has been one of the company’s best-seller in India due to its exquisite appearance, premium cabin and power-packed performance. The Skoda Rapid 2017 price is also aggressive, with a lot more features added. However, the company needs to work heavily on the after-sale department as it is where Skoda is crippled. The non-availability and expensiveness of spare parts is a major issue that Skoda needs to address as early as possible, if it intends to consolidate its position in the Indian market and retail higher volumes.