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Skoda reveals its Ford Focus rival

New Rapid on sale in autumn 2012

Skoda has revealed its production-ready Rapid saloon. The firm’s new small family car – a rival to the Ford Focus and VW Golf – will go on sale in the UK this autumn.

The Rapid will sit in the range between the existing Fabia and Octavia models.

01 Skoda Rapid

The Skoda Rapid will go on sale this autumn

Updated Skoda design

The Rapid is the first vehicle from Skoda to feature the company’s new styling language. It has a new grille and headlight design, plus a chunky, robust stance.

The new car’s long wheelbase and compact rear suspension design are said to give more boot and cabin space than the larger Octavia.

Five petrols, two diesels

The Rapid’s range of engines will comprise five petrol and two turbodiesel units.

Specifics of the engine line-up are yet to be confirmed, although it is likely that the Rapid will get a version of Skoda’s 1.4- and 1.8-litre turbocharged petrol engines, as well as a performance-oriented 2.0-litre turbo vRS version to follow later.

02 Skoda Rapid

Prices for the new Skoda Rapid are expected to start at around £12,000

The choice of diesel engines is likely to be between Skoda’s 1.6 and 2.0 TDI units. In the larger Octavia hatchback, the 104bhp 1.6-litre engine returns a claimed 62.8mpg with 119g/km CO2 emissions, meaning £30 car tax (VED). The Rapid should be even more efficient.

Rapid priced from £12,000

It is expected that pricing for the Rapid saloon will begin at around £12,000 when it goes on sale in the UK this autumn. That’s £2,165 more than the Fabia hatchback and £1,385 less than the larger Octavia.

By comparison, an entry-level Ford Focus or Volkswagen Golf costs £13,995 and £16,425 respectively, highlighting the Rapid’s proposed competitive price.

Expect more information closer to the car’s debut at the 2012 Paris Motor Show in September.

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