Czech brand bestseller in Russia — Liftbek Skoda Rapid survived the scheduled update. On December 11, a high-profile presentation in the format of a unique bright multimedia show in the largest planetarium of Europe took place in St. Petersburg.
The new Rapid was not so new, which we suspected. The Czech automaker such a model is no longer on the European market. The fact is that the Rapid SpaBeback has a Rapid SPACEBACK hatchback, and the base Rapid-Liftbek did not meet expectations, its sales did not reach 100 thousand pieces and was resigning. For other non-European markets, including the Russian, the automaker did not spend the power and means and develop a fully new model. In Mlada Boleslav, they decided to «do with low blood» and were limited to restyling the existing five-door Liftback. Here is a brief history of the hands-up of the St. Petersburg presentation.
Technically, the new Rapid has not changed. The base is preserved — the PQ25 platform. The wheelbase remained the same — 2 602 mm. Also unchanged body structure (including door openings). Motor gamma is also unchanged. This is a gasoline atmospheric 1.6 MPI (90 or 110 hp) in a pair with «mechanics» or a six-speed «automatic» AISIN, as well as turbo engine 1.4 TSI (125 hp) with a seven-step preselective «robot» DSG.
But on the updated design of the exterior it is worth staying in more detail. The front of the body and the rapid feed is completely new — they are made in the style of «fresh» models of the European Hatchback Scala and the new Octavia-IV.
Sharply outlined facets, the dropping line of the hood, the headlights of the sweep shape with built-in LEDs and the hexagonal grille of the radiator form a modern image of a popular model. The rear of the car also has undergone significant changes. So, now rapid rear highlights spectacular narrowed L-shaped lights in crystalline design, which reminds about the traditions of producing the famous Bohemian crystal, referring to the rich historical heritage of the brand. Also an important distinctive feature Rapid is Škoda’s inscription on the trunk lid, it reflects the new language of the Czech brand design.
Already in the basic configuration, LED headlights and rear lights are installed. The smallest 14-inch wheels will no longer: select only the wheels with a diameter of 15 or 16 inches.
A new decorative panels and the central console with the display of the information and entertainment system are drawn in the cabin. It is located directly in the driver’s view, so that nothing distract him from driving a car. In addition, Rapid is the first ŠKODA model in Russia, for which a 2-spoke steering wheel with heating is available. In combination with heating windshield, the model operation becomes especially pleasant and convenient in winter conditions.
The choice of three sets is saved (Active, Ambition and Style), «in the database», as before, there are two airbags and a stabilization system, and now added air conditioning. The list of options is noticeably enlarged: for the updated rapid, you can order virtual instruments, an extended cabin backlight, heated steering wheel, a collision warning system and driver fatigue control system.
At the presentation in St. Petersburg, the initial price was named. Skoda Rapid 1.6 MPI 5-transmissions in the Active configuration with air conditioning will be offered at 829,000 rubles.
The car will stand on the conveyor of Volkswagen Group Rus enterprises in Kaluga. And dealers will appear at the beginning of next year.
When our channel received a press release from the Czech automaker, and analyzed all the above, we concluded that the next generation of a related car was produced here in Kaluga. This is Volkswagen Polo Sedan. Apparently, the German concern is limited to the same deep restyling similar to the Skoda Rapid. But we can make mistakes.