Skoda Kushaq SUV Review: The Arrival Of The King
By Ameya Naik
1 mins read
Published on June 28, 2021
- The Skoda Kushaq will be the brand's first product based on the MQB A0 IN
- The Kushaq will be powered by a 1.0-litre TSI and 1.5-litre TSI engine
- The new Skoda Kushaq will be launched on June 28, 2021
Skoda has been itching to get back into the game in the country and the India 2.0 strategy was devised to ensure this happens. And that's why in 2020, the company showcased the Vision IN concept, which will form the basis of this strategy and the company will now 'make-in-India' for the world. The product then had to be an SUV and the Kushaq now here, finally!
The Kushaq is handsome and muscular. The Skoda Wing design dominates the front and the slim LED headlights connected to the grille makes it look robust. The signature LED DRLs too add to the overall look of the car and the front skid plate adds a bit of aggression. Look at it head on and it is quite a wide car, but not as wide as the others in the segment. It's shorter, less in terms of height but still manages to have a ground clearance of 188mm and best in class wheelbase.
Move to the side and you see the design doesn't have many sharp lines and it's all to keep the look simple yet ageless. There is a nice crease that runs along the side of the Kushaq and that really adds a bit of muscle to the car.
Also See: All-New Skoda Kushaq Photo Gallery
|Ground Clearance||188 mm|
At the rear you have this two-piece taillight and the distinct C element that you see on all Skoda cars. And the wide stance does not look over done by any 'stretch' (pardon the pun). The skid plate at the rear too adds to the buffed up aggressive look of the car something that we've come to expect of SUVs right! However, it's the crystalline elements on the car that make it without a doubt - A Skoda!
There are 2 petrol motors the 1-litre and the 1.5-litre TSI engines. No diesel on offer. The one litre engine makes 113 bhp and 175 Nm of torque, but Skoda handed us the keys to the 1.5-litre version. Now, Skoda offers the bigger of the two engines only on one variant - Style - which is the top spec variant. There's 148 bhp on offer and 250 Nm of torque, all of which is available from below 2000 rpm so the initial push is quick and keeps on pushing till 5000 rpm where it stabilises and that 7 speed DSG is an absolute knockout because it's keeps working overtime to ensure that you have all the power when you need it.
Also Read: Top 5 Highlights: Skoda Kushaq
|Skoda Kushaq||1.0-litre TSI||1.5-litre TSI|
|Displacement||999 cc||1495 cc|
|Maximum Power||113 bhp @5000-5500 rpm||148 bhp@ 5000-6000 rpm|
|Peak Torque||175 Nm @ 1750- 4500 rpm||250 Nm @1600-3500 rpm|
|Transmission||6-Speed Manual/6-Speed Auto||6-Speed Manual/7-Speed DSG|
And then there are the paddle shifters, for those who want to take over control that is and the gearbox reacts instantly to your inputs, which again is a fantastic experience. There's also a 6 speed manual on offer which we are sure will be immense fun and we say it because of the way it drives.
Ride And Handling
It drives like a hot hatch, yes I said it, it's out there now and I know a lot of you will criticise me for saying it. But get into the driving seat of it and then tell me what you feel. Quick direction changes are dealt with ease and manoeuvring it around the city too, given its compact proportions is easy. The chunky 17 inch tyres and the stiffly sprung suspension all work together to just crease out anything the road throws at you. Some deep craters too are dealt with ease and at no point are you disturbed in the cabin. There's a hint of body roll but that's well contained.
The Kushaq also gets the active cylinder deactivation tech that we'd seen on the T-roc. What this tech does is while cruising at certain speeds, this system shuts two out of four cylinders thereby allowing the engine to run more efficiently. Now, Skoda has not provided us with details of the fuel efficiency figure yet, but we'll get to know that on the day of the launch.
It's a clean dashboard and you wont see many buttons here and that's intentional, you get ventilated seats up front, a 10 inch touchscreen system with wireless apple carplay and android auto, sunroof and more, but what we missed in this car, being the top spec, is that it doesn't offer a virtual cockpit kind of interface. It's not a deal breaker, but I think that the feature would have added to the feature list and made it more comprehensive.
But let's get into the rear seat because a lot of you are reading this for the space it has to offer as well. Now the big claim by Skoda for the Kushaq is that though it's not longer or wider or taller than any of its closest rival, it still has more space between the wheels and you can see that here. The 2651mm wheelbase ensures I have good space for my knees and decent headroom.
Two people can easily fit here if they are my size, so clearly no place to squeeze in a third. You do get rear AC vents and charging points for passengers. You also sit more upright and the cushioning too makes you comfortable here as there is good under thigh support and that also means long journeys can be done with minimum fatigue.
Of course, the bootspace is good enough with 380 litres of it on offer.
You get the Skoda Connect connected car feature where you can check the cars real time speed, track driving behaviour, track your car and of course add a geo-fence, so you know where your car is. There's no remote unlock or remote ignition but that's because Skoda says that it has focused its attention on what the consumer really needs. But you also don't get electric seat adjustment up front, which I think is a miss given that its rivals do offer it.
Safety kit on the top spec version includes six airbags, auto headlamps and wipers, a multi-collision braking system, tyre pressure monitor, and hill start assist. All variants will also come fitted with ESC as standard.
The Kushaq might be late to the Compact SUV party but Skoda has done its homework. The new MQB-A0 IN platform gives it an edge. With localisation levels in the car inching towards 95 per cent, the price of the Kushaq will be extremely competitive.
The Kushaq is price at Rs. 10.49 lakh going all the way upto Rs. 17.60 lakh. Yes, the 1.5-litre TSI with the DSG we drove, costs Rs. 17.60 lakh ex-showroom and that we feel is a stretch and it could have been more aggressively priced. But the 1-litre TSI has been priced spot on as it starts from Rs. 10.49 lakh going all the way up to Rs. 15.79 lakh for the Style variant with the automatic transmission.
The Kushaq certainly has what it takes to lure customers and with a 4 year and 1 lakh kilometres warranty, and flexible maintenance packages, Skoda has most of the ground covered. The Kushaq then, ticks most of the boxes and while it might not disrupt the segment, it will dent the sales of some of its competitors
Last Updated on June 28, 2021
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