Skoda Rapid 1.6 MPI Ambition- Class within budget.
With a budget of just around 10 lakhs for a sedan and quite a few options I narrowed my list to : Maruti Ciaz, Hyundai Verna,Skoda Rapid, Vento, and Honday City. The Honda was a little out of budget, the ciaz too big with very less power and the verna, I personally did not like the flimsy electronic steering wheel. Final Call the Skoda rapid. Why the rapid well, read on. When you hear the name Skoda, you know you're going to get three things, Luxury, performance and competitive pricing. As soon as you step inside the rapid she welcomes you with plush interiors, good leg room, good seats and weirdly enough a feel good feeling. Getting straight into the drivers seat, unlike other cars that I drove and tested, this one gave me instant confidence of the road ahead. At just around with 9.89Lakh with some offers involved very excitingly we got the Skoda Rapid 1.6. Bought in mid July 2016, our baby has just clocked in 11000kms so far. Although the Rapid is just a vento with a different hood I still preferred the rapid over it since the rapid has a more pleasing design with more curves which I perfer over just simple classic straight lines in a car. Also the Rapid gave me a more 'upper market feel' . 'Driving on, below are my opinions on driving in the City and driving on the highway. City Driving: Steers well in the city and parking is very easy with this one. Gear shifting is needed quite often in bumper to bumper traffic since its power band is in the mid range. The clutch feels a tad bit hard compared to the other petrol cars I have driven and tested but for me it still is butter smooth since previously I was driving a Logan which has a history of hard clutches. The rapid gives me a mileage just around 9.5-10kmpl in Mumbai city even with hardcore traffic which is a bit low but hey with great power comes less mileage I guess. Highway Driving: Have done quite a few trips from Mumbai-Pune and Mumbai-Goa , driving this car on the highway is really where this car shines. Having the power in the mid range keeps you cruising comfortably and also helps shooting the car into a sprint when you are about to overtake a few high speeders. The MacPherson Strut setup of the suspension helps take in most of the bumps and gives a decent and very less tiring journey compared to some of the other cars I have driven in the past. Coming to the braking , one can feel the abs kicking in as soon as you do some hard braking on high speeds, effective nonetheless. Although the engine is quite refined but when you have a fully loaded car with 4 members and a 460 litre boot completely filled with luggage, Climbing steep slopes on the mountains gets a bit heavy for the car. The engine starts to grunt quite a bit and the noise in the cabin suddenly goes up. But hey coming from driving a diesel car for so many years and suddenly coming back to a petrol I guess I miss the torque that is readily available at lower power bands. I get a mileage of around 15-17kmpl on the highway which is pretty decent. With mostly my car running in the city and with some occasional highway driving, the Rapid serves its purpose and with full zest. In my opinion The Rapid is a great value for money car and a total recommended buy.
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