Skoda’s initial plans of launching these cars after the 2020 Auto Expo were shelved when the coronavirus lockdown happened

  • All three cars will be offered with petrol engines only.
  • Only the Rapid will be offered with a manual transmission.
  • The Karoq, an all-new product for India, will use a 1.5-litre turbo-petrol motor.
  • The facelifted Superb gets new tech plus a new engine.
  • With no pre-lockdown stock with dealers, all customer cars will be delivered fresh from the factory.

The lockdown had initially forced Skoda to postpone the launch of its new/facelifted cars but the Czech carmaker has finally been able to set a date for their launch. It has now been confirmed that the Skoda Karoq, the facelifted Superb and the Rapid with the new 1.0-litre TSI motor will be launched on 26 May. All these cars were shown at the 2020 Auto Expo, and were initially set to be launched right after the motor show.

The Skoda Karoq is a mid-size SUV that will be priced around the Rs 20 lakh mark. It will be brought into the country via the CBU route and will go up against the likes of the Tata Harrier, the Jeep Compass, the Hyundai Tucson and the VW T-Roc. It will be available with a single powertrain option: a 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine that makes 150PS and 250Nm. It will drive the front wheels through a 7-speed DSG transmission.

Not only does the facelifted Superb come with external design changes, it gets new features as well. The headlights are now matrix LED units and the fog lamps too are LEDs. There is a new 360-degree around-view camera on offer and customers will now also find the in-fashion connected car tech onboard. The sedan will be offered in two variants: Sportline and Laurin & Klement. The powertrain option will be the same for both the variants though: a 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine that makes 192PS and 320Nm, sending power to the front wheels via a 7-speed DSG transmission. We expect Skoda to price it upward of Rs 30 lakh, where it will rival the Toyota Camry Hybrid.

The biggest changes to the Rapid sedan will be underneath the bonnet. Skoda has done away with diesels for the time being and the VW-owned carmaker has decided to ditch the 1.6-litre naturally aspirated petrol motor as well. The Rapid will now be available only with a 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine that can make a healthy 110PS and 175Nm. You will be able to choose between a 6-speed manual and a 6-speed automatic. We expect the Rapid to be priced between Rs 9 lakh and Rs 14 lakh, where it will renew its rivalry with the likes of the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz, Hyundai Verna, Honda City, Toyota Yaris and Volkswagen Vento.

Bookings for all three cars have been open for some time now. Skoda has also revealed that none of these models have reached dealerships prior to the lockdown and will be delivered to its customers fresh from the factory. Their showroom officials will be equipped with the right tools to maintain cleanliness while delivering the cars.


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