Review: Skoda Rapid (2012 – 2019)
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.
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.
What does a Skoda Rapid (2012 – 2019) cost?
Skoda Rapid (2012 – 2019): What's It Like Inside?
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.
What's the Skoda Rapid (2012 – 2019) like to drive?
- Engines range from 1.0 TSI 95 to 1.6 TDI 105 GreenTech
- Readers report Real MPG to be between 36–68 mpg
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.
|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.
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.
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