THE Skoda Karoq only started appearing on UK roads at the beginning of the year, as the replacement for the much-loved and quirky Yeti.
But it has quickly won over an army of fans as the trademark VW Group build quality shines through – and it is even more practical than its predecessor as a family-sized SUV.
And while it is reasonably priced brand new, if you are on a budget, the good news is that the first second-hand models from the Czech car makers are now beginning to make their way on to the forecourts.
The Karoq looks smart, with classic compact SUV styling that gives the car an air of elegance – helped by design features such as the slim headlights, sharp bodywork creases and dramatic rear light clusters. Like the Yeti, the Karoq has great visibility all round and there is good room for four adults or a family of five.
At launch, it was available with a choice of four engines across the range – 1.0 and 1.5-litre petrols developing 115 and 150PS, and 1.6 and 2.0-litre oil burners with the same power outputs but better economy and pulling power.
Depending on the engine, there was also a choice of two or four-wheel drive, as well as either a six-speed manual gearbox or a seven-speed DSG automatic transmission. What all this means is that you should be able to find a model to suit your needs or preferences.
There were initially three main trim levels – SE, SE L and Edition. Standard kit across the range included alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control and a pedestrian detection system that brakes if you fail to notice someone in your path.
SE L models added bigger alloys, sat nav with an eight-inch touchscreen, heated front seats, trip computer, rear view camera and parking sensors as highlights.
Top-grade Edition models included 19in alloys, uprated sat nav with a larger 9.2in screen, electrically operated boot and more safety systems, including traffic sign recognition and blind spot protection.
A fourth trim option to look out for, called SE Technology, was aimed at business users and included sat nav, adaptive cruise control and parking sensors.
All but the base models had Skoda’s Varioflex rear seat system, where the three seats can be moved forward or backwards to increase boot space or rear legroom, or lifted out altogether. It means you get a capacity of up to 588 litres – easily enough to swallow a family’s luggage – and a van-like 1810 litres with them removed.
When it comes to the drive, you’ll find the Karoq to be an accomplished and fairly refined performer and all models offer pretty decent running costs.
What makes a second-hand Karoq even more tempting at the moment is the Skoda Approved Used Event running at dealerships until Monday.
The package includes £500 towards your finance deposit, 7.4 per cent APR on a PCP deal, the next two services for £159, at least a year’s warranty, one year’s free roadside assistance and a free MOT test.
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