The Czech carmaker, Skoda Auto is all set to launch their new mid-size SUV for the Indian market. The Kushaq will be launching on June 28th. The bookings of the Kushaq will also be starting on the same day while the deliveries will be starting in July. The Kushaq is the part of India 2.0 Strategy. This strategy also includes a new mid-size sedan that has been codenamed ANB and will be revealed by the end of this year. The Kushaq is expected to start at Rs. 10 lakhs ex-showroom and go all the way up to Rs. 17 lakhs ex-showroom.
The Kushaq is based on a new platform known as MQB A0 IN. This platform is a localized version of the MQB A0 platform that is used to underpin vehicles in the foreign market. The manufacturer has managed to achieve a localization level of 95 percent.
They will also be sharing the same platform with the upcoming Volkswagen Taigun, an upcoming mid-size sedan and a new sedan from Volkswagen too. This part sharing will help with pricing the vehicles more competitive in the Indian market.
Because of the MQB A0 IN platform, the Kushaq has one of the best wheelbases in the segment. It has a wheelbase of 2,651 mm. Because of the way, Kushaq will be priced, it will have to go against a lot of different types of SUVs. It will go against Maruti Suzuki S-Cross, Nissan Kicks, Renault Duster, Hyundai Creta, Kia Seltos, MG Hector and the Tata Harrier.
The Kushaq will be offered in two engine options. There is a 1.0-litre TSI that we have experienced on the Volkswagen Polo GT, Skoda Rapid and the Volkswagen Vento. However, they have increased the power output to 115 PS instead of 108 PS but the torque output stays the same at 175 Nm. As standard, it is offered with a 6-speed manual gearbox. There will be a 6-speed torque converter automatic gearbox available. This engine will be for people who are on a budget or are looking for more fuel economy.
Then there is the more powerful 1.5-litre TSI aimed towards enthusiasts. This is the same engine that is doing duty on the Volkswagen T-Roc and the Skoda Karoq. The engine comes with active cylinder technology. This allows the engine to shut down some of its cylinders to conserve some fuel. The engine produces 150 PS of max power and 250 Nm of peak torque. It will be mated to 6-speed manual gearbox or a 7-speed DQ200 DSG dual-clutch automatic transmission. The DQ200 transmission has faced a lot of backlash in the past. However, Skoda says that they have tested the Kushaq and it has proven to be reliable. Well, we will have to just wait and see how the transmission performs over the longer run.
Kushaq will be offered in three variants. There will be Active, Ambition and Style. The Active variant will be the base variant, while the Style variant will be the top-end variant. There are also rumours of Skoda launching a Monte Carlo variant which will sit above the Style variant and will be offered only with the 1.5-litre TSI.