New-Gen Skoda Rapid Expected To Be Launched In 2021 – 5 Things To Know

2020 skoda rapid first pics-1

While the Rapid was recently upgraded with an all-new BS6-compliant powertrain, Skoda Auto India is currently working on a new-gen model for the sedan

The Skoda Rapid has been on sale in the Indian market since 2011, and in 9 years of its existence, the sedan has only been given one facelift in 2017. However, with the German-owned Czech carmaker revealing the new-gen model for the car in the international markets late last year, speculations of an Indian launch started to arise.

A few months ago, Skoda Auto India launched the BS6-compliant Rapid in the Indian market, with no major changes to the design whatsoever. However, Skoda fans need not be disheartened since Mr Zac Hollis, Director of Sales, Service & Marketing, Skoda Auto India has already confirmed that a replacement for the Skoda Rapid will be launched soon.

Here is a list of the 5 things that you need to know about the upcoming new-gen Skoda Rapid –

1. Platform

It should be noted that Skoda makes two different versions of the Rapid sedan, the one that we get in India is based on the PQ25 platform, while the foreign-spec model is based on the PQ35 platform. This makes the latter slightly larger in dimensions as compared to the India-spec model.

2020 skoda rapid first pics-2

However, the new-gen Skoda Rapid (internally codenamed ANB) will be based on the heavily localised MQB A0 IN platform, which is also being used by the Volkswagen Group for developing a host of cars.

2. Design

While Skoda did reveal a new-gen Rapid in Russia late last year, it is yet to be seen if its the same model that the manufacturer will be bringing to the Indian market next year. The Russian-spec Rapid draws heavy inspiration from the Scala, especially at the front. It gets the same butterfly grille covered with a chrome embellish, flanked by triangle-shaped projector headlamps with LED DRLs.

2020 skoda rapid first pics-7

The side profile looks similar to the India-spec model, except it features a longer hood, roofline and new alloy wheels too. We expect all these changes being made to the new-gen model that will be brought to India too. At the rear, the 2021 Rapid is expected to feature new angular LED tail lights. Also, just like newer Skoda cars, the manufacturer’s badging at the rear will be replaced with the Skoda branding, placed on the boot lid.

3. Features

The new-gen Skoda Rapid is expected to be packed with a host of new features including full LED lighting, a fully-digital ‘Virtual Cockpit’ instrument cluster, ambient lighting along with a large touchscreen infotainment system with smartphone connectivity and connected-car tech.

2020 skoda rapid first pics-9

The current feature list of the Rapid consists of an 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system (6.5-inch on the lower variants) with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, automatic climate control, auto headlamps, auto wipers, rear AC vents, cruise control, tilt and telescopic steering wheel adjustment, leatherette upholstery, rear-centre armrest, infrared-cut glass for the windows and screens and so on.

On the safety front, the sedan comes with four airbags, rear parking camera, ABS with EBD, Hill Hold Control and Electronic Stability Program. We expect the new-gen Rapid to retain these safety features, while also add in some new ones.

4. Powertrains

Powering the current-gen Skoda Rapid in the Indian market is a sole 1.0-litre, three-cylinder, turbocharged petrol TSI engine that belts out 110 PS of maximum power, along with 175 Nm of peak torque. The transmission duties are being handled by a 6-speed manual gearbox as standard for now, however, Skoda plans to introduce an optional auto transmission soon.

2020 skoda rapid first pics-5

The Rapid has previously also been offered with a diesel powertrain, but since the said engine was not upgraded to comply with the BS6 emission norms, it stands discontinued. We expect Skoda to carry forward this decision with the next-gen Rapid too, and while it could come equipped with an updated 1.0-litre TSI powertrain, we do not expect the inclusion of an optional oil burner at the time of the launch.

5. Price & Rivals

As of now, the Skoda Rapid is retailed at a starting price of Rs 7.49 lakh for the entry-level Rider variant, which goes up to Rs 11.79 lakh (both prices, ex-showroom) for the top-end Monte Carlo trim. However, the new-gen model’s price could be slightly increased, given the fact that it will be better equipped than the current model on sale.

2020 skoda rapid first pics-3

Upon launch, the 2021 Rapid will retain its rivalry with the Volkswagen Vento, Hyundai Verna, Honda City, Toyota Yaris, as well as the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz.