Skoda Rapid was the name given to wide range of cars manufactured by the Czech Automobile manufacturer, Skoda Auto, between the years 1934 and 1990. However, more recently, in 2011, Skoda Auto revived the brand name with the introduction of its new subcompact car targeting the European, Chinese and Indian car markets. The car was launched with different technical specifications in all the three markets although the brand name remained the same for both European and Indian markets.
In India, Skoda Rapid was first introduced into the market in November 2011, as a part of the 2018’s growth strategy being followed by Skoda Auto. More recently, the company launched a feature packed version of the car, named Skoda Rapid Leisure, which was made available only for a limited period. This offer was strictly aimed to further boost the sale of the original mid-size sedan in the Indian market.
After its launch, in 2011, the Skoda Rapid soon became one of the most successful cars in the Indian auto market. Hence it is really not surprising that the car bagged a number of prestigious and well deserved awards. These include, Family Car of the Year Award, 2011 by Top Gear Magazine, Compact Sedan of the Year by ET Now Zigwheels, Best Saloon Car of the Year 2012 by Bloomberg Autocar and the People’s Choice Award of the Sedan of the Year.
Skoda Rapid is available in both petrol and diesel versions having manual as well as automatic transition. Both the petrol and the diesel engine are of 1.6L capacity and even offer a similar horsepower of 105Bhp. However, the petrol engine produces comparatively lesser torque of 153Nm at 3800rpm, while the diesel engine produces a torque of 250 Nm at 1500 to 2500rpm. The engine offers dynamic performance with great fuel efficiency, making it one of the most powerful engines in its class. Customers can also choose between a 6-speed tiptronic automatic transmission or the 5-speed manual one, for both petrol and diesel versions.
As far as the external looks of the Rapid are considered, Rapid has largely copied and improvised the features of Volkswagen Vento. Apart from the typical Skoda chrome grill, the car features the usual headlamp cluster on the front along with the Skoda badge placed on top of the nose of the bonnet. The look of the rear of the car, and especially the shape of the tail lamps is remarkably similar to that of Volkswagen Vento, with the only exception being the extra kink in the design of the number plate holder. The sleek body colored door handles and body colored mirrors add to the stylish exterior look of the car.
The insides of the Skoda Rapid also do not differ much from VW Vento. The front panel is just a combination of mismatched parts belonging to both Vento and Skoda. While the steering wheel, the instrument panel, the gear lever and the audio system is typically from Skoda family, the other parts which include the vents, buttons and climate control panel belong undoubtedly to the Vento. Despite having a completely black finish, the central console does not present that appealing a look due to this mismatching blunder.
Apart from that the interiors are designed to spell class by using premium materials for the dual tome upholstery. There is enough space to place cups and other smaller things within easy reach. In addition, the interior is also fitted with all the latest features which include an audio system featuring a audio input for portable media players, SD/MMC card reader, comfortable and adjustable seats with headrests and armrests along with a tilt steering.
The safety features offered by Skoda Rapid are best in class. The car boasts of an inbuilt engine immobilizer which comes with a floating code system that is incorporated with the key. This ensures that the car starts only when the codes match so that the car can be started only by using its unique key. There is also the feature of anti-pinch windows which prevents accidental injury caused by closing windows when the passengers might still have their hands out. There are also airbags, ABS and front and rear fog lamps to ensure maximum safety.
The car is available in three variants each in the both petrol and diesel versions. The colors available include Brilliant Silver, Candy White, Cappuccino Beige, Deep Black Pearl and Flash Red. The ex-showroom price of the car ranges between 7.12 lakh to 9.76 lakh, depending on the variant and version being purchased.