Skoda Rapid Overview
Skoda has decided to introduce a facelift variant of the Rapid in India on November 3rd. The sedan has been here in the Indian market since 2011 and until now Skoda has only given minor updates to the sedan. However according to the sources Skoda will providing some significant update to the Rapid facelift this time.The Rapid nameplate has been used by Skoda for a long time and the current generation car first made its debut back in 2011 and shares many parts with the Volkswagen Vento subcompact sedan. Presently the car is being produced at Skoda’s manufacturing facility in Pune.Now that Skoda has decided to introduce the Rapid facelift in the Indian market here are all the details of the subcompact sedan. Check for Car Loan Interest calculator in Fincarz.
Skoda Rapid Design & Style
The Rapid is based on the Volkswagen Vento, and telling them apart got even more tricky with the facelift. Skoda has taken the term ‘facelift’ a tad too seriously; the biggest change on the updated Rapid is its new face. The design team at Skoda India has grafted the face of the Mk3 Fabia (that is on sale globally) onto the existing sedan.
Highlights up front include smoked out projector headlamps with daytime running lamps, Skoda’s new signature butterfly grille and a new bumper that houses a pair of cornering foglamps. The hood has been redesigned to accommodate the updated face, and gets its own set of strong creases that underlines its aggressiveness.
The side shows off a prominent shoulder line, that runs across the length of the car. The new design for the 15-inch wheels look swell too, and aren’t too busy as the ones we saw on the Rapid Black edition. It is also the profile from where the similarities to the Vento become too apparent. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing, considering the Volkswagen itself has a clean, clutter-free design itself.
Over to the rear, there’s practically nothing that has been updated. Those with hawk eyes will spot a subtle chrome strip on the boot, a smoked effect on the taillamp lens and a mildly redesigned bumper. There’s a subtle lip spoiler too, which we think looks cool.The new front profile lends the Rapid an aggressive aura, that the rest of the design sadly fails to live up to. We wish Skoda was a bit more thorough in carrying out the update, which would’ve made the already good looking Rapid even better.
Skoda Rapid Cabin & Space
Step inside the cabin of the updated Rapid, and there’s a clear sense of familiarity – especially if you have been inside a Polo or a Vento. The design of the dashboard, the placement of controls and even the doorpads for that matter are identical to its VW siblings. The new ebony-sand interior theme gives the cabin a classy air.
The layout is logical and doesn’t take too much time to get used to. Getting comfortable in the Rapid isn’t a big ask either – the steering adjusts for tilt and reach, and the seat gets a healthy range for height adjust too. The three-spoke leather-clad steering is just the right size, and houses controls for the audio and the calls. We’d have loved to see a flat-bottom steering (just like the Vento), but that sadly isn’t on offer just as yet.
The meaty centre-console houses a pair of AC vents, the 6.5-inch touchscreen infotainment system and the automatic climate interface. The centre stack is identical to the Vento, if you discount the little card holder that sits right above the audio system. The touchscreen itself is responsive and easy to use. It is paired to four speakers (one in each door) and dishes out reasonable audio quality.
The air-conditioning didn’t give us a reason to complain either. It managed to cool the cabin down quickly. What we did miss here was a ‘Max AC’ button, that many of its competitors get. Also, switching off the climate control unit as a whole isn’t a straightforward process (you need to dial fan speed to zero – wait for a second – and rotate the knob left once more). For more info on Skoda Rapid check sccaudi
Rear occupants wouldn’t crib about feeling the hot sun either. The rear aircon vents go a long way in chilling the rear half. But, once you’re in the rear bench, you quickly realise it isn’t the best seat in the house. The Rapid is a low car to begin with, and the low-set flat bench doesn’t do much either. While it is spacious, the legroom still isn’t as good as the segment toppers – the Ciaz and the City. The backrest is reclined at a comfortable angle though, and the rear armrest ups the comfort factor a notch – at the expense of a fifth passenger, of course. We recommend you leave the fifth occupant outside the car, since there’s not much legspace for him anyway. The high-set transmission tunnel and the rear AC vents bite into kneeroom and footroom, which makes the Rapid a four-seater at best.
The update does just enough to breathe some new life into the interiors. That said, it isn’t a radical departure from the outgoing model, and has the basics such as ergonomics and space done right.
Skoda Rapid Engine & Gearbox
With the introduction of the 1.5-litre motor, Skoda has phased out the older 1.6-litre unit. The new engine, which also debuted on the VW Polo recently, is also available with a 5-speed manual gearbox and makes 105PS and 250Nm of torque. While the new engine is smoother and more efficient, the 7-speed DSG makes the biggest difference. Peak power is on offer at 4400 rpm, however, peak torque carries on from 1500-2500 rpm.
This, combined with the seamless power delivery through the seven-speed DSG, makes for a relaxed driving experience. You get two modes to choose from, D and S – that is drive and sport, with an option of using the tip-tronic feature in drive mode.
On the move, the new 1.5-litre diesel engine is fairly smooth and shifts cogs quickly in D to maintain maximum efficiency, which in turn makes initial response feel a bit sluggish. However, slot it into S and the responses from the engine become far crisper and revs are held much longer to let you explore the entire powerband. It gets even better when you push it hard as the flat torque curve gets the car to move with some urgency with no lag in power between shifts. If you are worried about efficiency, well, you shouldn’t because the 7-speed DSG box is not only quicker than the manual one, but also more efficient.
Skoda Rapid Driving Dynamics
Just like the Vento, the ride has a stiff edge to it, and you will feel a bit of crashing and thudding through potholes. The upside is that ride remains rock steady at highway speeds, with next to no float or vertical movement. The suspension on the diesel variant is set up to be stiffer than the petrol, to compensate for the added weight of the engine. Naturally it feels flatter through the corners, with very little body roll seeping in.
What we weren’t too fond off, is the vague steering through the bends. There’s very little feedback from the wheel, which makes you back off a notch when entering corners. At city speeds, it is considerably heavy compared to the Hyundai Verna or even the Maruti Ciaz, and requires some muscle to go lock-to-lock.
Skoda Rapid Safety & Security
Dual airbags and anti-lock brakes come as standard across all variants of the Skoda Rapid. The automatic variants goes one up, offering Hill Hold Control and the diesel-auto gets Electronic Stability Control as well. Also, in case of a crash, the Rapid automatically cuts off fuel supply.
Skoda Rapid Price in Ahmedabad
Skoda Rapid On-Road Price in Ahmedabad ranges from 9,30,576 to 14,74,397 for variants Rapid 1.6 MPI Active Petrol and Rapid 1.5 TDI CR Style AT respectively. Skoda Rapid is available in 10 variants and 1 colours. Below are details of Skoda Rapid variants price in Ahmedabad. Check for Rapid price in Ahmedabad at Carzprice.
Skoda Rapid Round Up
Quite simply, if you enjoy driving and want to own a diesel sedan with an automatic gearbox, the Skoda Rapid is pretty much in a class of one.It’s great to use around the city and is more efficient than even a manual transmission and remains good fun to drive on the highways with a good ride and handling package.And well, as for the dealership issues which you might have heard about in the past, rest assured that a lot of work has been done to make sure there is no repetition.