Skoda Rapid Overview
The Rapid has always been a steady performer for Skoda. While the big boys from the Czech automaker’s portfolio that is, the Octavia and the Superb always stole the limelight, it was the Rapid that steadily contributed volumes. With the demise of the Fabia brand in India, the sedan has been the most affordable Skoda on sale, for a couple of years.With the competition picking up steam, Skoda thought it was wise to give the Rapid a nip and tuck, and prep it for yet another stint at the market. What’s changed? Let’s take a look: Book a test drive for Rapid in Tryaldrive
Skoda Rapid Design & Style
Skoda has given the Rapid their family look, specially the front profile. The butterfly grille, sleeker projector lamps with DRLs and revised bumpers makes it look fresh. While the front gets substantial changes, the side profile and rear profile remain more or less the same. The alloys are carried over from the pre-facelift model, there are chrome highlighted door handles, boot spoiler and smoke out tail lamps. Nevertheless, the Rapid now looks much more appealing than before.
Skoda Rapid Cabin & Comfort
On the inside the Rapid gets fabric seats. The Dashboard is the same which looks dated. There haven’t been any changes to the interiors, which is not a very pleasant thing. It does not get a touchscreen either, which is available on most cars in its segment. The Rapid Black Edition has cruise control too. It is a spacious car and has very good leg room, even at the rear. The seats are high and have good padding and support. Getting in and out of the car is very convenient. Like in all Skodas the trunk space is phenomenal with one drawback being that the boot can’t be opened from the outside unless the user does so with the key. The boot can be opened by a one touch button from the inside, but hitting the unlock button for the doors does not unlock the trunk. The spare wheel is not a full size one and gets a narrower tyre.
Skoda Rapid Engine & Gearbox
Engine options remain unchanged for the Rapid, and include a 1.6-litre petrol engine, and a 1.5-litre oil burner. Both engines are available with a 5-speed manual transmission, and optional automatic transmissions – 6-speed torque converter for the petrol and a 7-speed dual-clutch for the diesel.
The 1.6-litre ‘MPi’ engine has been among Skoda’s most reliable motors, powering a sizeable chunk of their global portfolio. The four-cylinder engine feels well suited for the size and bulk of the Rapid, and rarely feels out of breath. While it has 105PS and 153Nm on tap, it isn’t exactly a sprightly performer. While maximum shove is available in a relatively narrow band post 3500rpm, peak power is developed only near the redline.
Naturally, you are usually forced to rev the motor to make the most of it. Bottom end is strong enough to let you do 20kmph in third without stuttering. The clutch is light, action is positive and the travel isn’t too long either – so traffic snarls shouldn’t be a big bother. In case you want to give the left leg a rest altogether, there’s an automatic on offer too.
The 6-speed automatic does a good job of swapping cogs. Admittedly it isn’t as good as the 7-speed DSG in the diesel, but it wouldn’t give you a reason to complain on a daily basis. Driving the petrol automatic requires a light and steady right foot, which gives the gearbox enough time to contemplate and execute gear changes. Needless to mention, it will be easier on the pocket that way too.In case you are eyeing the petrol, bear in mind the motor likes to relax. Hurrying isn’t its cup of tea, and it is far more suited chugging miles at a leisurely place.
The Rapid gets the updated 1.5-litre TDi diesel engine that debuted with the Volkswagen Ameo compact sedan. Power is up to 110PS (from 105PS), while peak torque remains identical at 250Nm. Between the two options, the diesel is easily our pick for its outright oomph and fun to drive factor.
Paired with the 5-speed manual, the 1.5-litre motor is quite a hoot to drive. We wouldn’t blame you if you found yourself keeping the motor on the boil, exploiting all the 250Nm it has to offer. Turbo lag isn’t as perceptible as before, and if you are silly with the throttle, it will pin you to your seat as the tacho climbs past 1500rpm. The clutch on the diesel version is anything but light, though. Prolonged traffic jams will give your calves quite a workout, and we genuinely wish it was a notch lighter to help crawling in traffic.
What about the automatic? Well, it won’t make you miss a manual transmission. It is that good! Shifts are quick – both up and down – and there’s a Sport mode if you want to have some fun too. The gearbox is tuned for efficiency, and will find every little opportunity to shift up. Lay the hammer down with the right foot, and it will hold the revs all the way up to the redline. Nice!
Skoda Rapid Ride & Handling
Pick any car from the entire Skoda lineup and it shines in this department. Same is the case with the Rapid. It offers excellent ride at high speeds with super confidence on the highways. It is well composed on undulations as well but patchy roads with deep potholes makes it thud loudly. The handling is very satisfying, it is eager to take corners hard and maintains its line without any drama. The steering feel is rich, giving you precise feedback about the wheels. The brakes offer good stopping power but it’s almost 2017 now and manufacturers should start offering rear discs for that extra edge on safety.
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.Talking about safety, Skoda India is offering ABS and dual front airbags as standard across all the trims of the new Rapid. You also get Hill Hold Control and Electronic Stability Control with the DSG transmission. Skoda has had a bad reputation in India when it comes to after sales but they’ve come a long way in making the process transparent and reliable. They are also offering 4 year service car programme as standard with the new Rapid that covers 4 years warranty, 4 years of roadside assistance and an optional 4 year service package.
Skoda Rapid Cost in Bangalore
Skoda Rapid Ex-Showroom Price in Bangalore ranges from 8,47,320/- (Rapid 1.6 MPI Active Petrol) to 13,45,307/- (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 Conclusion
The Skoda Rapid was previously overshadowed by its VW sibling, the Vento. But now in its updated avatar, the Rapid looks quite appealing and fresh relatively. That along with more features, powerful diesel engine and Skoda’s latest 4 year service care programme, the Rapid is definitely worth considering if you’re looking out for a C-Segment sedan.