Review: Skoda Rapid (2012 – 2019)

Rating:

Looks like a saloon but is actually a hatch. Sits between the Fabia and Octavia. Good value for money. Very practical and spacious.

Some interior materials aren't great. No engines have emissions of below 110g/km. Early models criticised for poor ride quality.

Recently Added To This Review

25 October 2018

Report of clutch and flywheel failing on 2016 Sloda Rapid at 6,000 miles. Read more

20 January 2018

Report of temperature coming through the vents of a Skoda Rapid varying every few seconds between hot and cold, and occasionally staying on (very) hot. It happens whether air con is on or off, and no... Read more

2 August 2017

Reassuring letter sent to owners of EA189 engined Skodas who have had the NOx emissions fix: “if a customer makes a complaint to an Authorised Repairer or to the Volkswagen Group in respect of... Read more

Skoda Rapid (2012 – 2019): At A Glance

The Skoda Octavia has found favour with buyers thanks to its no-nonsense design and practicality – but as the next generation moved a little more upmarket in terms of quality and price, Skoda has filled the gap with the Rapid – and it delivers the same no-nonsense, down to earth motoring.

The Rapid, at first glance, looks very traditional – but while it does have a saloon silhouette it’s actually a hatchback, with all the practicality benefits to match. That means an extremely useful boot and space in the back so generous that even the very tallest passengers will be comfortable.

Drivers will be happy too – it’s a very easy car to drive, with a soft, smooth ride, slick gearshift and light steering. The instruments are clear and everything is sensibly laid out, logical and simple to use. There are some nice flourishes too, like an ice-scraper in the fuel filler flap and a few handy, low cost options like a bin in the door and a reversible floor carpet with a wipe down covering on one side.

The engine range is fairly simple – there’s a 1.6-litre diesel and petrols with power outputs ranging from 75PS to 122PS. Skoda reckons on the diesel winning most buyers, but those on a budget would be wise to consider the 86PS 1.2 TSI, which suits the car well. It’s best to avoid the entry level 1.2-litre MPI petrol though. 

Skoda Rapid 2012 Road Test.

Long Term Test Skoda Rapid 1.6 TDI SE

Skoda Rapid 1.4TDI and Spaceback 1.0TSI DSG 2017 Road Test

What does a Skoda Rapid (2012 – 2019) cost?

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Skoda Rapid (2012 – 2019): What's It Like Inside?

Dimensions
Length 4483 mm
Width 1940 mm
Height 1461 mm
Wheelbase 2602–2604 mm

Full specifications

It might be a fairly small car but the saloon-like bodywork means a long wheelbase, which in turn means a well proportioned cabin. The front seats are easy to adjust and even with a tall driver up front there is space in the back for two adults – and they’ll ride in as much comfort as those in the front.

There’s also a generously sized rear load area with a hatchback door, rather than a boot. It’s good for 550 litres of luggage, but Skoda rather sensibly showed us a practical demo – the Rapid impressively swallowed up a large suitcase, three medium cases, some cabin bags and an entire bag of footballs, all with the rear seats in place.

But while the Rapid majors on big car practicality it does lack big car ‘feel’ inside. The dash is adorned with hard plastics rather than the now commonplace soft-touch materials seen in other cars and some of the switches – particularly the ventilation dials – feel a little on the cheap side. That said, most of the materials are well screwed together and feel like they’ll last. Plus when you factor in the price, you can forgive the Rapid this.

Overall it’s a usefully proportioned, simple and well laid out cabin and while entry level S models aren’t the most well equipped, mid-range SE models come with almost all the creature comforts a small family  would ever need. Couple that with a good-sized boot and you have a recipe for the ideal family car.

Standard equipment from launch (November 2012):

S models come with central locking, curtain airbags, daytime running lights, reach/height adjustable steering, height adjustable driver’s seat and electric front windows.

SE adds 15 inch alloy wheels, body colour door mirrors and handles, air-conditioning, trip computer, MDI for connecting phones and audio plus a leather steering wheel.

Elegance is the top trim and comes with 16 inch alloy wheels, cornering front foglights, cruise control, a height adjustable passenger seat, rear electric windows, chrome interior details and a multi-function steering wheel with audio controls.

Child seats that fit a Skoda Rapid (2012 – 2019)

Our unique Car Seat Chooser shows you which child car seats will fit this car and which seat positions that they will fit, so that you don't have to check every car seat manufacturer's website for compatibility.

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What's the Skoda Rapid (2012 – 2019) like to drive?

There are five engines in the range – a 1.2-litre MPI petrol with 75PS, a pair of 1.2 TSI petrols with either 86PS or 105PS, a 1.4 TSI with 122PS and a 1.6-litre diesel with 105PS. Skoda expects the diesel to be the more popular choice and it’s quiet and refined unless pushed hard - which it never needs to be thanks to a decent torque output of 250Nm. It’s emissions are 114g/km with official fuel economy of 65.7mpg.

But if you want a refined car there’s no need to spend the extra for a diesel – the TSI petrol engines are hushed and produce peak torque from low revs, making for smooth, quiet progress. All are fairly inexpensive to tax and run, with emissions from 119g/km and economy of up to 55.4mpg.  Avoid the old tech 1.2 MPI, though – it’s fairly expensive to tax and is nowhere near as good as the TSI.

Regardless of engine the Rapid is a very relaxed car, with light steering, a smooth gear change and comfortable suspension that manages to soak up most lumps and bumps. The only thing that breaks the serenity is the amount of road noise, which can be intrusive and ‘boomy’ at times, particularly over coarse B-road tarmac.

But on a smooth road the Rapid, despite being relatively small, feels like a big car. It’s quiet, refined and smooth and is perfectly at home on a long motorway cruise. Thanks to light, precise steering it works fairly well in town too and unless you drive it hard it’s fine on a country lane – disconcerting body roll is only apparent at higher cornering speeds. 

Engine MPG 0-62 CO2
1.0 TSI 110 61 mpg 9.8 s 106 g/km
1.0 TSI 95 63 mpg 11.0 s 103 g/km
1.2 48 mpg 13.9 s 137 g/km
1.2 TSI 105 52 mpg 10.4 s 125 g/km
1.2 TSI 105 GreenTech 55 mpg 10.4 s 116 g/km
1.2 TSI 110 58 mpg 9.8 s 110 g/km
1.2 TSI 85 55 mpg 11.8 s 119 g/km
1.2 TSI 86 55 mpg 11.8 s 119 g/km
1.2 TSI 86 GreenTech 58 mpg 11.8 s 114 g/km
1.2 TSI 90 60 mpg 11.3 s 107 g/km
1.4 TDI 90 71 mpg 11.7 s 94 g/km
1.4 TDI 90 DSG 71 mpg 11.8 s 99 g/km
1.4 TSI 122 DSG 49 mpg 9.5 s 134 g/km
1.4 TSI 122 GreenTech DSG 51 mpg 9.5 s 125 g/km
1.4 TSI 125 DSG 58–59 mpg 9.0 s 114 g/km
1.4 TSI 90 71 mpg 11.7 s 94 g/km
1.6 TDI 105 64 mpg 10.6 s 114 g/km
1.6 TDI 105 GreenTech 71 mpg 10.6 s 104 g/km
1.6 TDI 115 67 mpg 10.0 s 109 g/km
1.6 TDI 90 64 mpg 12.0 s 114 g/km
1.6 TDI 90 DSG 63 mpg 12.2 s 118 g/km
1.6 TDI 90 Greenline 74 mpg 12.0 s 99 g/km
1.6 TDI 90 GreenTech 72 mpg 12.0 s 104 g/km

Real MPG average for a Skoda Rapid (2012 – 2019)

Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance

87%

Real MPG

36–68 mpg

MPGs submitted

128

Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

What have we been asked about the Skoda Rapid (2012 – 2019)?

Every day we're asked hundreds of questions from car buyers and owners through Ask Honest John. Our team of experts, including the nation's favourite motoring agony uncle - Honest John himself - answer queries and conudrums ranging from what car to buy to how to care for it as an owner. If you could do with a spot of friendly advice before buying you're next car, get in touch and we'll do what we can to help.

Ask HJ

What's a good car choice for use as a local taxi?

Which small-medium sized car would you recommend as a local taxi? Hybrids are expensive so I'm thinking a petrol, with no DMF and chain driven. Better if it is non-turbo too but that isn't a deal breaker and MPG should be reasonably good.
For a narrow body and a big boot the Skoda Rapid was good enough for quite a few taxi drivers to pick it. But all the engines are turbo and belt cam. Real MPG shows that 2.0 litres Skyactiv G engines in Mazda CX-3 and Mazda 3 get good economy, and the Mazda 2 1.5 Skyactiv G does even better with real MPG in the 50s, even for the 6-speed auto. Another possibility is a Honda Jazz Sport with the 1.5 i-VTEC 130 engine. Very spacious and practical inside.
Answered by Honest John
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What Cars Are Similar To The Skoda Rapid (2012 – 2019)?

Key attributes of the this model are: Comfortable seats, Diesel engine, Economical, Petrol engine, Cheap Tax and Small family.

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What do owners think?

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