Skoda’s answer to the likes of Jeep Compass and Hyundai Tucson, the Karoq, will arrive on Indian shores sometime in mid-2020
- Karoq is based on the MQB platform, used by many cars in the VW Group.
- It looks like a scaled-down version of the Kodiaq.
- Available with three petrol and three diesel engine options globally.
- Will get features like Virtual Cockpit and LED headlamps.
- Expect it to be priced in the Rs 20-25 lakh range.
The Skoda Karoq was revealed back in 2017 and initially, its India launch was slated for 2019. However, the launch of the midsize SUV in India has been pushed to mid-2020.
In the Czech carmaker’s lineup, the Karoq slots in between the Kamiq and the Kodiaq. The bigger sibling, Kodiaq is already on sale in India. And just like the Kodiaq, the Karoq too is built on the VW Group’s MQB platform. Skoda is initially looking to import the Karoq into India as a CBU.
In essence, the Karoq just looks like a scaled down version of the Kodiaq. In fact, it requires a second look to distinguish the two. Another way of differentiating the two is the size. At 4382mm in length, 1841mm in width and 1603mm in height, the Karoq is visibly smaller than its older sibling, which measures 4697mm in length, 1882mm in width and 1676mm in height.
In the international market, Skoda offers the Karoq with a choice of six engines in total (three petrol and three diesel). The petrol engines are 1.0-litre, 1.5-litre and 2.0-litre turbocharged units, while diesel options include a 1.6-litre and two 2.0-litre (available in two states of tune) motors. All engines can be had with a 6-speed manual transmission or a 7-speed DSG (dual clutch automatic transmission). All-wheel-drive is also available with certain powertrain options. As the Karoq will be launched in mid-2020, the engines Skoda chooses to offer with it in India will be BS6 compliant.
On the features front, Skoda has packed in its Virtual Cockpit feature that uses the 12.3-inch TFT display to the fullest, a separate 9.2-inch touchscreen for controlling the infotainment system, integrated Wi-Fi, ambient lighting, a panoramic sunroof and LED headlamps among others. Whether Skoda chooses to offer features like integrated Wi-Fi in India still remains to be seen. That said, the launch of the Hyundai Venue with its eSIM tech and the impending launch of the MG Hector with the same feature are some positive omens to go by.
We expect Skoda to price the Karoq in the Rs 20-25 lakh price range where it will take on the likes of the Jeep Compass and Hyundai Tucson. It is likely to be unveiled at the 2020 Auto Expo, where Skoda is also planning to debut the India-spec Kamiq.