Skoda Karoq review – fit for purpose - Design

Skoda’s new small SUV is certainly capable, but lacks the character and spirit of its Yeti predecessor

Evo rating
Price
from £20,880
  • Excellent, well-sorted controls; thoughtful interior gadgets; compact dimensions
  • Fun factor is absent; similar SEAT Ateca is more affordable

Design

The Karoq is a fine looking car. It's relatively compact, and its proportions, thanks to short overhangs, are well balanced. Its details are chunky and purposeful too, yet they’re subtle enough that the Karoq doesn’t have an overt and inappropriate sense of adventure about its styling.

There are very few of the clichéd 4X4 design cues that shout about an offroad ability it simply doesn’t have. It’s an honest look for an SUV, one that’s more trainers, jeans and a down jacket than full Gortex, walking shoes and trekking poles; an appropriate guise for its natural environment, the suburban school run.

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It’s rare that we’d recommend the largest wheel option on a car; ride and handling aren’t often improved by bigger wheels and lower profile tyres. However, the 19-inch Crater wheels are a nice, solid design and look great on the Karoq, plus the ride isn’t badly impacted when they're fitted.

Under the skin the Karoq's engineering is fairly conventional. The body is a five-door steel monocoque, with MacPherson strut front suspension and, depending on the model selected, either a torsion beam rear end or (on 4x4s) a multi-link setup. Steering is electrically-assisted rack and pinion, while kerb weight varies from 1265kg in the 1.0 TSI to 1516kg for a 2.0 TDI with the DSG 'box and four-wheel drive.

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