The budget saloon appears to have quite a few Octavia design influences.
Skoda has had quite the year in terms of model launches as the Czech brand has updated its lineup from top to bottom with the facelifted Superb and the electric Citigo, not to mention the next-gen Octavia and the Kamiq small crossover. We could see one more new car before the end of 2019 as the company’s Russian division has dropped two fresh teasers of the new Rapid.
Wait, didn’t the Rapid die when the Scala was launched? Not quite, while the VW Golf-rivalling five-door hatchback has effectively replaced the budget-friendly family car in most markets, in countries such as Russia, India, and China it soldiers on and it’s even getting a new generation. The reasoning behind this decision is the Scala is a more upscale product and therefore pricier, while the Rapid uses the same recipe as the Dacia Logan by offering no-frills motoring easy on the wallet.
We haven’t seen the revamped Rapid in the metal yet, although we’re willing to bet it won’t look nearly as sharp as the adjacent sketches suggest. The mini-Octavia vibe the teasers are sending out will probably have a correspondent in real life, but the 2020 Rapid will still be a low-cost family car at the end of the day. As with nearly all teaser sketches, the wheels are unusually large and the doors are missing the handles to enable a sleeker profile, but the real thing won’t be as nice.
Skoda isn’t willing to go into any details about the new Rapid, although it does mention it will retain its practical five-door liftback body style. It’ll be interesting to see whether the slightly shorter Rapid Spaceback will live to see another day, although we wouldn’t get our hopes up too high. The interior remains a mystery at this point, but knowing Skoda, it will keep things simple with a straightforward dashboard design without the high-end features of the more expensive Octavia.
The fact that Skoda has both the Rapid and Scala in its portfolio goes to show how far the brand has come in recent years since it now caters to different regions of the world with multiple models. Other relevant examples include the Kodiaq GT and the recently launched Kamiq GT, which are both a China-only affair.