If you already own a Karoq, don’t worry, as the changes for this update to Skoda’s family SUV are minor and we wouldn’t feel compelled to cut back on the previous model. this new in a hurry. However, the brand’s latest entry into the family crossover arena continues to rank among the best when it comes to practicality, comfort and value for money. And this 1.0 TSI model adds potentially low running costs to the mix, which will be important to many potential buyers at the moment.
In the midst of a highly congested field of family crossovers, Skoda Karoq is a car that we appreciate. However, with talented opponents like Hyundai Tucson, Nissan qashqai and Peugeot 3008There’s no point in becoming complacent – that’s why Skoda made it popular SUV an innovation. The Czech brand thinks it has found room for improvement and has therefore made subtle changes on a large scale.
The updates are there to view from the outside, just like the larger seven-seater Kodiaq SUV, Karoq sports a wider, more upright grille. The bumpers have also been reworked, while the head and taillights have been tweaked; the former have a small stepping element to their bottom edge. For the first time on Karoq, advanced matrix LED lighting technology is introduced, in addition to two new colors to choose from: Phoenix Orange and Graphite Gray.
However, the changes aren’t purely cosmetic – they’re also designed to benefit aerodynamics. The combination of smooth underbody panels, extended rear spoiler and even aerodynamic covers for the alloy wheels improves aerodynamics by 9%. This should help improve fuel consumption – especially at highway speeds.
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Step inside and you’ll find the basic layout is the same as before, but with new interior trim details to subtly differentiate it from the old car, including inserting a metal dashboard. Imitation brushed metal and cross-effect metal door panels on SE Drive trim level image. There’s also a two-spoke steering wheel raised from Octaviawireless Apple CarPlay and Android Autoand USB-C ports – including one on the rearview mirror to plug in the dash cam.
Among the latest upholstery options is the new Eco package, which means partial seat covers are made from recycled bottles. This will certainly give the owner a pleasant glow; For one thing, thanks to a more comprehensive ambient lighting package, rear passengers can now bask in it too. Everything is sturdy enough, although there is more hard plastic in the cabin than in competitors like the 3008 or the new Qashqai.
As always, Karoq boasts some well thought out details as part of Skoda’s Simply Clever approach to interior design. The front door pockets can hold a 1.5 liter bottle and have little elastic straps to keep items in place and there’s even space for a small clip-on trash can.
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Rear seat passengers are provided with a folding tray table and a tablet/smartphone holder. The optional VarioFlex rear seat (£745) comes with a 40:20:40 split and can even be removed completely to reveal a total load volume of 1,810 litres. In its standard five-seat layout, the Karoq’s 521 liter (588 with VarioFlex seats) trunk is better than that of the Qashqai’s, and a reversible trunk liner has a rubber sidewall, which comes in handy when traveling. Bring lots of furniture. However, there is a sizable step in the floor when the seats are folded flat.
Inside, as the Karoq’s ‘white bodywork’ remains unchanged, the fact that it’s still based on the brand’s MQB platform means passenger space is as good as before. There’s a fair amount of head and legroom – definitely up there with the best in this class – while the wide-open doors mean that tying kids into a child restraint isn’t a painful exercise back.
Under the bonnet, there are two petrol and three diesel engine options. The 1.0-litre TSI we’re driving here is the entry-level unit, and while there are versions that climb to 187bhp (but still without a sporty vRS model, unlike with its Kodiaq sibling). it), this 108bhp engine will be enough for most people’s needs. It’s a quiet unit – even with hard acceleration – and also quite smooth for a three-cylinder engine. The six-speed manual transmission it pairs with is light and precise, and it contributes to a car that feels easy to drive overall.
Of course, with a claimed 0-62mph time of 11.2 seconds, you can hardly call it fast, but the small turbocharger helps deliver 200Nm of torque output. This is enough to keep the Karoq going well at medium speeds at reasonable revs so as not to interrupt the 1.0 TSI unit’s relatively intense fine-tuning.
Around town there’s enough flexibility to prevent you from constantly changing gears, so those on a tight budget won’t be shortchanged by this entry-level unit. In fact, given the way fuel costs are going up, you’ll probably have a hard time; Skoda claims performance up to 48.7mpg (with CO2 emissions of 132g/km) and we got relatively close to this first figure in testing. This suggests that Karoq has to be relatively affordable to run.
While top-spec models are now available with adaptive dampers and continuous steering, Skoda’s balance of ride and handling remains the same as before. In other words, it strikes a good compromise between safe and secure cornering, and class-leading crash smoothness.
The ride was particularly soft when testing the Tarmac, but it remained well controlled on rough surfaces, while bumps from the suspension were well isolated. Wind and road noise are also well suppressed, although the Skoda is slightly behind the Tucson in this area. However, the Karoq is a bit more nimble than the Hyundai – although that’s not exactly an option for most buyers – but overall, it’s a very relaxing place to go over long distances. .
The level of equipment has been enhanced by the introduction of accessories such as a power-adjustable driver’s seat and a three-zone climate control system. The SE Drive trim doesn’t have those features – nor does a digital dashboard – but it does come with more than enough standard equipment, including 17-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights, a touchscreen infotainment system, and more. 8-inch touchscreen (similar to its predecessor, because the technology hasn’t moved much), cruise control plus front and rear parking sensors. There are also the typical thoughtful extras we’ve come to expect from Skoda, including an ice scraper and an umbrella under the passenger seat.
Deposit £3,000 for three years PCPand based on a representative financial example from Skoda it will cost you £362 per month. That reduces the input level Vauxhall Grandland – a car that offers a bit more power from its 1.2-litre turbo – £67 per month.
|Model:||Skoda Karoq 1.0 TSI 110 SE Drive|
|Engine:||1.0 liter 3-round turbocharger|
|Power / Torque:||108bhp / 200Nm|
|Transmission process:||Six-speed manual, front-wheel drive|