Skoda is working on a new sedan for the Indian market, which will replace the ageing Rapid. The Rapid has been on sale for many years and now looks dated when compared to the competitors. Zac Hollis, director of Sales, Service & Marketing has just confirmed that the new sedan will be launching at the end of this year. He confirmed this information in a tweet. Twitter user @furious_mayur asked that he is planning to buy the Skoda Rapid but people are against him with feature comparisons and should he wait for the new version of the Rapid. To which Zac replied stating the information.
According to Zac, the new Rapid replacement will be launched by the end of the year. However, it will sit above the current Rapid because it will be a bigger sedan than the current Rapid. The new sedan will be based on the platform that is specifically made for India. This platform is based on the MQB platform that is used to underpin various vehicles in the international markets. The new platform is very versatile as it can be adapted to various body shells. The upcoming Kushaq is also based on the MQB-AO platform and it is a mid-size SUV.
The current generation of the Rapid shares the underpinnings from the Volkswagen Vento, which is already almost a decade old. However, the Rapid still enjoys quite a bit of sale as there was enough backlog order for Rapid, said Zac Hollis last year. So, there can be a slight chance that Skoda does not discontinue the current Rapid and introduce the new sedan along with side current Rapid. Because the new sedan will be more expensive and bigger, it means that it will be tough for new buyers. In which the current Rapid can play a vital role as it will still be cheaper and a tried and tested product. Honda recently did the same. They launched the 5th generation City while the 4th generation of City is still on sale in India, but is less expensive than the 5th generation. So, people on a budget can buy the 4th generation of the City.
The new sedan will come with an all-new design language, new features and equipment. As it will be priced higher, expect it to offer a more premium experience with soft-touch materials for the touchpoints. Powering the new sedan should be a 1.0-litre, three-cylinder TSI petrol engine and a 1.5-litre, four-cylinder TSI petrol engine. We have seen both the engines on other Volkswagen and Skoda products. The 1.0-litre TSI engine produces 108 PS of max power and a peak torque output of 175 Nm. It will be offered with a 6-speed manual gearbox or a 6-speed torque converter automatic gearbox. This is the same engine found on the current generation Rapid, Volkswagen Vento, Polo and the upcoming Kushaq. Then there is the 1.5-litre TSI engine that produces 150 PS of max power and a peak torque output of 250 Nm. It comes mated to only a 7-speed Dual-Clutch DCT automatic gearbox. It is the same engine that will power the higher variants of the upcoming Kushaq. The same engine has also done duty on the Volkswagen T-Roc and Skoda Karoq.