Skoda Rapid 2018 Review India: First Drive Review

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Skoda Rapid 2018 has come around. This time, it will give you the needed updates from the last version. Read the following review of IndianAuto.com Team to grab all significant changes on this new model.

It is very hard not to sound sarcastic but what pops up in your mind when you see the Skoda Rapid way back then. To me, it looked like someone is pushing themselves too hard to build up a self-image to fit in, like a patchwork of many parts borrowed from other cars, but in the end worked out quite well, that I’ll give to the manufacturer. And fair it is to say that it is the look that sells, it is the appearance that determines the sales. Skoda wants to be in the industry, Skoda adapts, Skoda changes, and Skoda gives you the latest version of the Rapid for you to make a judgment - Skoda Rapid 2018.

2018 Skoda Rapid on road, right view

Fair it is to say that it is the look that sells; it is the appearance that determines the sales

1. Skoda Rapid 2018 Exterior: A facelift that takes five years to come to completion

Ok folks! Bear with me here because we will get things done step by step in a very cliché manner by starting from the front end. The façade boastfully sports the brand’s typical grille which receives chrome surrounding, with the mounting Skoda’s logo of three-feathered-winged arrow placed above. Flanking that is a freshened pair of quartz-cut projector headlights, which are accompanied by jewel-shadow LED day running lights. And to make the whole set of exterior car lamps complete, C-shaped smoked taillights are added to the list, lending a sleek touch to the back part. But it doesn’t end there in terms of smooth outline, which is enhanced all the more by the familiar rear spoiler, which in turn is an impeccable blend of fashion and function. 

2018 Skoda Rapid’s grille, right front view

The façade boastfully sports the brand’s typical grille which receives chrome surrounding

There is no update to the profile whose design is obviously borrowed from the old model, except for the new set of alloy wheels, which work so well for the cosmetic effect of the Rapid. Exclusively made for this model of the Rapid only, these Line/Antares alloy wheels have to go through rigorous tests to meet Skoda homologation requirements before being installed, offering a reduction in unsprung weight, hence a greatly improved sense of driving.

2. Skoda Rapid 2018 Interior

Basically, there hasn’t been any significant change to the overall layout of the inside. The interior wears a new coating of twofold colours of ebony and sand. Following that is the chrome job for details ranging from door handles to gear lever, amplifying the premium feel of the cabin. But the X-factor is not about décor, catching up with the trend requires worthwhile features. The steering wheel is incorporated with adjustable tilt/telescoping steering column, allowing it to be adjusted to the drivers’ preference. 

2018 Skoda Rapid’s boot space with backpack inside, boot lid being open

The interior wears a new cladding of double themes of ebony and sand

Ranking quite high in the segment, the 6.5-inch screen infotainment system is highly responsive to driver’s touch and follows commands smoothly.

Upholstery is optional with 3 choices to make: tailor-made leatherette cover which is anti-crease; Alcantara cover made from polyester and polyurethane of beige or back colour.

Other minor additions includes: coat hanger made of stainless steel and solid varnished wood; Anti-glare interior rearview mirror; rear windscreen defogger with timer; centre armrests at both seat rows; manually-controlled A/C; climate control system which will help you combat this summer; automatic remote car windows. The auto cruise system also makes it in the list, turning speed control into an effortless task and make every trip an enjoyment regardless of time. What is regretted is the lack of a reverse camera, which is somewhat made up for with the parking sensors. And to help you focus more on driving, a rain sensor is here to dispel all the distraction on a rainy day by activating the wipers whenever it senses the glass is wet.

The moment you wonder if comfort can get any further than this, well, Skoda have considered it and always go an extra mile to indulge their clients. This car gets footwell which is integrated with AmberGlow illumination, meaning smooth ingress and egress for car passengers. Rear-seat comfort is guaranteed by dual rear vents which can be freely adjusted at passengers’ will.

Still, the Rapid doesn’t stand that big chance against opponents like the Ciaz or City when it comes to cabin space, which is compromised with the bountiful luggage compartment standing at 460-litre volume, generously catering for your needs of bringing stuff around on family camping or vacation.

018 Skoda Rapid’s boot space with backpack inside, boot lid being open

Limited cabin space is perfectly compromised with the generous boot space standing at 460-litre volume

3. Skoda Rapid 2018 Engine & Performance

This generation of Skoda Rapid presents both diesel and petrol engines to be had on the market. The diesel motor offers the 1.5L TDI 81.00kW which itself comes with two options of a manual 5-speed transmission and an automatic 7-speed DSG one. You can also opt for the 1.6 MPI 77.00kW petrol motor which can be either paired with a manual 5-speed gearbox or an Automatic 6-speed. 

2018 Skoda Rapid’s 1.5L TDI 81.00kW engine

This generation of Skoda Rapid presents both diesel and petrol engines to be had on the market

The diesel unit delivers a peak power of 103bhp at 4400 rpm and a maximum torque of 250 Nm at 1500-2500 rpm. On the other hand, its petrol counterpart has an output of 105bhp of top power at 5250 rpm with the highest torque of 153 Nm at 3800 rpm.

We had our hands on both variants to run for a test. The diesel engine again beats the petrol regarding power, which means taking less time to start and accelerate. It shows stable and powerful performance in mid ranges, and displays no hassle reaching the high ranges. The petrol unit is also of good refinement and easy to drive, quite silent while operating.

4. Skoda Rapid 2018 Price

Engine Model  Price 
 Diesel  1.5 TDI Active   9.78 Lakh 
 1.5 TDI Ambition   10.71 Lakh 
 1.5 TDI AT Ambition  11.96 Lakh 
 1.5 TDI Style   12.64 Lakh 
 Sporty Edition 1.5 TDI MT  12.64 Lakh 
 1.5 TDI AT Style   13. 57 Lakh 
 Sporty Edition 1.5 TDI AT    13.77 Lakh 
Petrol  1.6 MPI Active  8.32 Lakh
 1.6 MPI Ambition  9.22 Lakh 
 1.6 MPI AT Ambition   10.55 Lakh
 1.6 MPI Style  10.61 Lakh
 Sporty Edition 1.6 MPI  11.13 Lakh

5. Skoda Rapid 2018 Specs

Skoda Rapid 2018 Specs
 Engine 
Engine Type
 1.6-litre 103.52bhp 16V Petrol Engine
 1.5-litre 108.4bhp 16V Diesel Engine
Displacement 
1598 cc
 1498 cc
Cylinder 
 4 
 4
Torque 
 153 Nm 
 250 Nm
Power 
 103.52 BHP 
 108.4 BHP
Transmission
 5-speed Manual
 5-speed Manual
Mileage
 15.41 kmpl
 21.13 kmpl
 Dimension
 Length x Width x Height
 4413 x 1699 x 1466 
 Wheelbase
 2552mm
 Ground Clearance
 120 mm 
 Kerb Weight
 1192 kg 
 Cargo Volume 
 460 litres 
 Seating Capacity
 5
Suspension and Brake
 Suspension
 Front: McPherson suspension with lower triangular links and torsion stabilizer
 Rear: Compound Link Crank-axle
 Brake
 Front: Disc
 Rear: Drum  
 Steering and Tyres
 Steering
 Power 
 Tyres  
 185/60 R15 Tubeless Radial
Other features
  • Multi-function Steering Wheel
  • Power Adjustable Exterior Rear View Mirror
  • Automatic Climate Control
  • Anti Lock Braking System
  • Alloy Wheels
  • Fog Lights - Front/Rear
  • Power Windows Rear/Front
  • Driver and Passenger Airbag
  • Power Steering
  • Air Conditioner

To Top It Off

To quote Autocar India: “Those who are likely to spend the most of their time behind the wheel will enjoy the punchy, relatively-more-involving drive of the Rapid”

Those words pretty much sum up everything about my feelings about the vehicle. And with the competitive pricing range (Rs. 8.48 lakh – 13.39 lakh, Ex-Showroom price in New Dehli), this new version of Skoda Rapid did run a serious round of upgrading and has proved a candidate to be reckoned with. Double As for both intention and execution of the manufacturer, the car hugely improved on its predecessor and promises to achieve a breakthrough in sales this time. 

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