It is a new SUV from Skoda and has been named the Karoq. Created from a portmanteau of Alaskan words, Kar and Roq, it is a new D-segment five-seater vehicle from the Swedish automaker and will be slotted above the Octavia sedan in their line-up.
It’s the VW influence on Skoda that prompted them to base the design of this new vehicle on its elder sibling, the Kodiaq. This is very evident in the face where the Karoq gets the moustache grille, wedge shaped head lamps and bulges on the bonnet. There are typical crossover lines dominating the silhouette while the rear gets the signature Skoda arrow-shaped tail lamps and lines on the boot lid.
Where the standardisation is most visible is in the cabin which looks likes a combination of other Skoda models. The European spec model which was displayed at the official unveiling gets black and grey interiors, however, for markets like India we believe that Skoda will also offer the black and beige trim found in models like the Superb and Octavia. Standard features are expected to include climate control, touchscreen infotainment system, rear AC vents and six airbags across the range. Some of the optional extras include a digital instrument cluster, electrically adjustable front seats, rear entertainment packages and possibly chrome trim packages and of course, a host of accessories like window curtains and coat hooks.
Given that this is a Skoda, it combines luxury with a high amount of practicality and this is evident in the flexible rear seats which can be folded down in various combinations to increase space at the back. Also expect a plethora of storage spaces across the range both in the front and the back.
The Karoq will be offered with two petrol and three diesel engines. The former includes a new 1.0-litre turbocharged unit while the diesels also include a top-of-the-line 2.0-litre mill that gets a seven-speed DSG and AWD as standard. The other engines can also be had with a six-speed manual as a part of the package. ABS and EBD will be standard while the automatic model gets a stability programme and traction control system as a part of the deal.
Given the boom in demand for SUVs in the D-segment, we believe that Skoda will bring the Karoq to the Indian market. It will be positioned above the Octavia in the D-segment and take on the likes of the Hyundai Tucson. It is expected to be priced in the range of Rs 19 lakh to Rs 25 lakh and is likely to come here in 2018 through the route of local assembly to keep things competitive.