As we admired the Skoda Yeti, which was our support car during the media drive of the new Octavia, the company did mention about a new model they would launch in India but chose to be rather secretive about. This, along with the upcoming Octavia RS and the 7-seater Kodiaq will be the newest ammo in their arsenal. According to a report, the Skoda Kaorq, an SUV which has replaced the Yeti globally, is currently being evaluated for India.
Skoda’s director of sales, marketing and service has mentioned that the upcoming Kodiaq will mark the beginning of their new SUV strategy and apart from that, they are exploring the idea of launching the Karoq, which is the newest member in their small SUV range.
The Skoda Karoq was revealed in May this year and replaces the Czech carmaker’s popular compact SUV, the Yeti, worldwide. Based on Volkswagen Group’s MQB platform, the Karoq shares its platform and parts bin with the recently launched VW Tiguan. Handsomely styled, the Karoq is a five seater SUV and offers a generous boot space of 521-litre, expandable to 1,630 litres. With its VarioFlex system which allows the second-row seats to be removed or individually adjusted, this space could be further boosted to 1,810 litres.
The Skoda Karoq is offered with a choice of five engine options. However, we expect two of those to make it to India – a 1.5-litre TSI petrol and a 2.0-litre TDI. Paired to either a 6-speed manual or a 7-speed DSG, the 2.0-litre TDI pumps out 189 hp in its highest tune and sends power to an AWD system. The 1.5-litre TSI motor is good for 150 hp and can push the Karoq from nought to 100 in a little over 8 seconds.
Available in both 2WD and 4WD variants, the Karoq offers Driving Modes to choose from including Normal, Sport, Eco, Individual and Snow. For the 4WD versions, there would be an additional off-road mode with an electronic diff lock and traction control. In addition to driving modes, the Karoq will also offer an adaptive chassis with three modes – Comfort, Standard and Sport.
The new compact SUV will include a generous list of safety features, along with a fully digital instrument console. The Karoq also gets full-LED head, tail and ambient lights, LED fog lights, 19-inch alloy wheels and electrically adjustable heated seats as some of its features. Inside, top variants come with a 9.2-inch Columbus infotainment system with 64 GB storage, DVD/CD drive and navigation and gesture control. If priced well, the Karoq become the newest player to slug it out with the Jeep Compass and the Tuscon among others.