Skoda has been itching to get back into the game in the country and the India 2.0 strategy was devised to ensure this happens. And that’s why in 2020, the company showcased the Vision IN concept, which will form the basis of this strategy and the company will now ‘make-in-India’ for the world. The product then had to be an SUV and the Kushaq now here, finally!
The Kushaq is handsome and muscular. The Skoda Wing design dominates the front and the slim LED headlights connected to the grille makes it look robust. The signature LED DRLs too add to the overall look of the car and the front skid plate adds a bit of aggression. Look at it head on and it is quite a wide car, but not as wide as the others in the segment. It’s shorter, less in terms of height but still manages to have a ground clearance of 188mm and best in class wheelbase.
Move to the side and you see the design doesn’t have many sharp lines and it’s all to keep the look simple yet ageless. There is a nice crease that runs along the side of the Kushaq and that really adds a bit of muscle to the car.
At the rear you have this two-piece taillight and the distinct C element that you see on all Skoda cars. And the wide stance does not look over done by any ‘stretch’ (pardon the pun). The skid plate at the rear too adds to the buffed up aggressive look of the car something that we’ve come to expect of SUVs right! However, it’s the crystalline elements on the car that make it without a doubt – A Skoda!
There are 2 petrol motors the 1-litre and the 1.5-litre TSI engines. No diesel on offer. The one litre engine makes 113 bhp and 175 Nm of torque, but Skoda handed us the keys to the 1.5-litre version. Now, Skoda offers the bigger of the two engines only on one variant – Style – which is the top spec variant. There’s 148 bhp on offer and 250 Nm of torque, all of which is available from below 2000 rpm so the initial push is quick and keeps on pushing till 5000 rpm where it stabilises and that 7 speed DSG is an absolute knockout because it’s keeps working overtime to ensure that you have all the power when you need it.
And then there are the paddle shifters, for those who want to take over control that is and the gearbox reacts instantly to your inputs, which again is a fantastic experience. There’s also a 6 speed manual on offer which we are sure will be immense fun and we say it because of the way it drives.