Skoda Rapid Rider is shockingly good value for money

Very rarely does the launch of a new car generate as much noise and interest in the Indian market as the 'new' Skoda Rapid, launched alongside the all-new Karoq and the Superb facelift on 26th of May, has done. 

Don't let that prefix 'new' fool you though. All that's new in the Rapid is the 1.0-liter turbocharged petrol engine mated to a 6-speed manual transmission, the sole power-train choice on offer at the moment. The mechanicals date back to the decade-old Volkswagen Vento while the external design is carried over from the 2017 facelift.

Why all this buzz then, you wonder? "Sticker shock", that's why! For those still wondering, it's the entry-level Rider variant's price tag that has got the whole industry, the critics and the potential customers talking.

Retailing at ₹7.49 Lakhs ex-showroom Chennai, the Rapid Rider's price tag is too good to be true!

With a modern turbo petrol mill and reasonable levels of equipment, this isn't one of those outdated 'bare-bones' variant for old-timers. In fact, the Rapid Rider presents itself as a legitimate alternative to similarly-priced higher variants of premium hatchbacks and compact sedans that are not as big, not as safe (barring a few) and not as sure-footed as the Skoda. Yes, you lose out on fancy LED lights, there is no touchscreen infotainment inside (click on the image above for the list of key features) and you can only have it in Candy White or Carbon Steel shades but there is no denying the incredible value-for-money this variant offers.

Here are some interesting facts:
  • Rapid Rider is the most affordable turbo petrol car in the country. The sole turbo petrol variants of Hyundai's Grand i10 Nios and Aura as well as Volkswagen's own Polo - powered by the same 1.0-liter TSI engine as the Rapid across the range - are priced higher. All three cars are from a segment or two below. Enthusiasts out there, take note!
  • Every one of Rapid's rivals from the segment have higher starting prices. While the Hyundai Verna starts at ₹9.30 Lakhs ex-showroom Chennai, Maruti-Suzuki Ciaz, Toyota Yaris and Honda City start at ₹8.32 Lakhs, ₹8.86 Lakhs and ₹10.13 Lakhs respectively. Rapid's twin from Volkswagen - the Vento - has its entry-level variant priced at ₹8.86 Lakhs. This is in total contrast to the Octavia that's the most expensive offering in its segment.
  • Rapid Rider is priced lesser than many premium hatchbacks and compact sedans, let alone it's segment rivals. Even Maruti-Suzuki's Swift ZXi+ retails for 9,000 higher! Skoda has, quite literally, set the cat amongst the pigeons with this variant. 

So what are you waiting for? If you're in the market for a new car priced around 10 Lakhs, the Rapid Rider makes a very strong case for itself. Get one, spruce up the exteriors with some nice-looking alloys, add a touchscreen infotainment system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay inside and you should be all set with still a few thousands left in your budget. Ignore this at your own peril.


  1. The article kindling our interest and tempting us to go in for Rapid Rider.

    1. It is a great buy. Give in to your temptations!