The Skoda Kamiq has some talented rivals to beat, but the new supermini-sized SUV could be the pick of the bunch.
The new Skoda Kamiq is a car to look out for at the end of this year – it has been designed around everything VW has learnt from their versions of the SUV market including the T-Roc and Tiguan. the Skoda Kamiq is due to be based on the tried and tested MQB platform, with a style, spacious and clever body design. Exact specs, prices and PCP deals are not yet confirmed, however according to ‘Autoexpress’ the Kamiq will be expected to ‘shoot straight to the top of the class’ when they tested it in the UK.
Almost three in three years for Skoda as they will have released another SUV into the segment. They have committed to the ongoing trend in the car market for SUV’s. Following the Kodiaq in 2016 and the Karoq in 2017 the Kamiq will be available in late September 2019.
The Kamiq. Pronounced ‘Ka-mick’, this is a rival for the Renault Captur, Volkswagen T-Cross, and the soon-to-be-replaced Nissan Juke, competing in the small, supermini-sized SUV market.
Instantly recognisable as the third of Skoda’s SUVs, the Kamiq inherits its siblings’ split headlights, clamshell bonnet and V-shaped grille. Based on the familiar MQB A0 platform underpinning the Volkswagen Polo, Skoda insists it offers all the flexibility and ‘Simply Clever’ features we’ve come to expect, in a smaller and more manageable package.
The interior of the Kamiq follows suit in the VW’s group design with a mixture of soft, squashy rubbers used for most of the touch points, along with leather, complimented with slightly harder plastics across the dashboard and buttons.
The Kamiq allegedly comes with an optional 9.2-inch touchscreen, as well as wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto - something none of the Kamiq’s competitors can offer yet. The infotainment is typically functional, sharp and simple to navigate, though frustratingly, there’s no rotary dial to control the volume.
Exact specs haven’t been confirmed, but the Virtual Cockpit dials are likely to be extra, too. It isn’t as clear or sharp as the equivalent Audi set-up, but it adds a touch of class missing in many of the Kamiq’s rivals. We’d suggest they’re a ‘nice to have’ rather than an essential bit of kit, though.
Onto the drive – they will be launching the Kamiq three engines: a pair of 1.0-litre Petrol's (94bph or 113bph) and a 1.6-litre TDI Diesel. The more powerful 148bhp 1.5 TSI hasn’t been homologated yet, but it’ll join the range before the end of 2019. This engine is a known quantity, as it’s used throughout the VW Group range on a wide variety of vehicles. Expect around 50 - 55mpg and CO2 emissions of 112g/km depending on spec and wheel size.
According to the ‘Autoexpress Test Drive’ they said ‘on the road, the Kamiq felt safe and solid no matter what we threw at it. We were driving the more powerful 113bhp 1.0-litre, which Skoda expects to be its biggest seller. It accelerates cleanly, and while the control weights – the pedals and gearbox especially – are light, they’re perfectly accurate. Few buyers will feel short changed in this area, regardless.’.
‘Up at motorway cruising speed, the Kamiq’s engine is all but silent. There’s little to no tyre roar, but the A-pillars and door mirrors do generate quite a bit of wind noise, which proves the only interruption in an otherwise refined drive.’ – Autoexpress.
Looks may be deceiving, with its jacked-up styling and raised body the Kamiq is only 60mm taller than the new Scala hatch. The new Kamiq has reported to handle well through corners and down more twisty roads in comparison for its size – there is good body control considering the SUV body height.
So, the Kamiq ticks the driving and technology boxes, but what does it offer for practicality? Skoda prides itself on the ‘Simply Clever’ touches that make all its cars unique and the Kamiq has been scattered with quirks and tweaks to make this SUV incredibly easy to live With. There’s the usual ice scraper in the fuel filler cap, and an umbrella in the driver’s door. Dig a little deeper and you’ll find an LED torch in the boot, a funnel for the washer fluid, and slick, but optional pop-out door-edge protectors.
The Kamiq’s space and practicality is something to be pretty pleased about. The 400-litre boot (1,395 litres with the rear seats folded flat) is pretty standard in class, but rear seat accommodation leaves its rivals trailing. There is enough head and leg room for six-foot adults, even with the front seat set to fit a similarly-sized driver.
There has been no official revealing of pricing, spec of fuel efficiency numbers for any Kamiq variant as of yet. With a little bit of market research and approximating we believe the Kamiq may sit around the £17,500 starting price upwards into the £20,000’s. In typical Skoda fashion residual values should be strong, which, we hope, will mean preferential PCP terms.
Standard spec structure is likely to be along a similar line of the new Scala. The Scala currently offers a choice of S, SE and SE L. Spec dependent we are expecting to see the common features such as alloys, parking sensors, touch screen, air con and DAB radio to be among the majority of vehicles, with optional extras to enhance the vehicle such as privacy glass, keyless entry, dual-zone climate, larger touch screen, bigger alloys, LED lighting and leather seats (including heated and massage).
Overall, we are expecting good things from the new Skoda Kamiq – with its trusted power units and touch of class interiors we can see a bright future for the SUV once it is released at the end of September. Approximated Spec figures below based on market averages and product research (Autoexpress).
Model: Skoda Kamiq SE 1.0 TSI 115
Price: £19,750 (est)
Engine: 1.0-litre 3cyl turbo petrol
Transmission: Six-speed manual, front-wheel drive
0-62mph: 9.9 seconds
Top speed: 121mph
Economy/CO2: 55mpg (est)/112g/km (est)
On sale: Late September