Skoda Karoq variants
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Is the Skoda Karoq the perfect family SUV?

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Finance representative example (PCP)

Total cash price £17,999. Borrowing £14,399 with a £3,600 deposit at a representative APR of 12.9%.

49 monthly payments
Fixed interest rate
Total amount payable
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Annual mileage limit
6000 miles

Skoda Karoq buying guide

The styling is smart and restrained – the perfect tonic if you think modern cars are getting too overstyled. Mind you, you can add a spicier edge by choosing the SportLine trim, which is a bit like putting a chilli pepper in a korma. Whichever trim level you pick, you’re sure to be getting a good-value, practical workhorse that’s ready for the open road.

What Skoda Karoq trim levels are there?

We’ll try and make this easy but there have been a few trim levels available on the Karoq. There’s no bare-bones Karoq, with even the entry-level SE spec getting alloy wheels, cruise control, two-zone air conditioning, DAB radio, Bluetooth and rear parking sensors.

SE Technology was aimed at business users, but it offers a good spec for private buyers too. In addition to SE, you get Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, plus sat nav, integrated WiFi, front parking sensors and adaptive cruise control. SE Drive came later, with exclusive upholstery and wheels, LED ambient lighting, sat nav and a reversing camera.

Next up is SE L spec, bringing heated front seats, LED headlights, clever VarioFlex rear seats, keyless entry and suede upholstery. For a while, Skoda also sold the more luxurious Edition specification, with a powered tailgate, electrically adjustable front seats, wireless phone charging and additional active safety features.

SportLine adds a more aggressive body kit, plus a parking assistance pack, Matrix LED headlights (these aim to offer full-beam brightness without blinding other drivers) and a panoramic sunroof that floods the interior with light.

If you’re planning to cross the odd muddy field in your Karoq, look out for the Scout trim. This gets four-wheel drive as standard, plus front and rear scuff plates and an off-road driving mode.

Skoda Karoq interior and technology

Just like the exterior, Skoda has opted for a fairly restrained, timeless design for the interior of the Karoq. Taking centre stage is a glossy touchscreen with a tile system that’s easy to navigate, but sensible Skoda has also retained a lot of physical buttons and dials. It may not have the instant wow factor of some other SUVs, but you’ll find it really easy to live with. High-spec cars get a smart and configurable digital instrument cluster, replacing traditional dials.

Considering Skoda is meant to be the value arm of the Volkswagen Group, you wouldn’t know that inside. Most of the materials feel premium enough, with the leather-wrapped steering wheel being a particular highlight. Chrome trim helps to lift the atmosphere, as well. All the buttons operate with a solid click. High-spec versions with leather or suede upholstery and all the mod-cons manage to feel pretty luxurious.

Bookending the touchscreen are two banks of shortcut buttons. Even without them, the Karoq’s media system is intuitive, but these add even more streamlined usability.

Skoda Karoq engine range explained

Skoda Karoq 1.5 TSI petrol

Whether you’re going to be just hopping around town or flying up the motorway, the versatile 1.5-litre petrol is up to the task. It’s surprisingly economical for a petrol SUV, achieving up to 45mpg – and that’s partly due to its clever engine. Two of the four cylinders can shut down when you’re at a steady speed to save fuel. Its appeal also comes from its perky acceleration, with the 0-62mph sprint dealt with in just nine seconds. Power stands at 150hp.

Skoda Karoq 1.0 TSI petrol

Below the 1.5-litre engine is a three-cylinder 110hp 1.0-litre turbo petrol. It’s well-suited to trips around town, and performs suitably on longer journeys too. Officially, it’s marginally more economical, but if your journeys involve steep hills or anywhere where you need to get up to speed quickly, your fuel economy will suffer.

Skoda Karoq 2.0 TSI 4x4 petrol

At the top of the petrol Karoq range is a powerful 190hp petrol. It’s only found on the SportLine trim, and only comes with four-wheel drive. That means it offers plenty of grip in all weathers, and boasts acceleration on a par with the Skoda Octavia vRS hot hatchback. You’ll just need to factor in the 30-35mpg fuel economy and budget for slightly higher fuel costs than the 150hp engine.

Skoda Karoq 2.0 TDI diesel

Diesel power is still going strong in the Karoq, and the diesel engines will provide the best fuel economy. You’ll need to make sure you do the occasional longer journey, with the reward being 55-60mpg and a longer range between fill-ups than the petrol engines. There are 116hp and 150hp versions of the 2.0-litre TDI, both with excellent fuel efficiency. In the past, there’s also been a 190hp range-topper with four-wheel drive, while earlier Karoqs came with a 1.6-litre diesel instead of the smaller-powered 2.0-litre engine.

Skoda Karoq FAQs

Introduced in 2017, the Skoda Karoq is a five-seat, five-door SUV that sits between Skoda’s smaller Kamiq and bigger Kodiaq. It’s Skoda’s answer to the Nissan Qashqai, Kia Sportage and Ford Kuga, and shares a lot of the same parts as the SEAT Ateca and Volkswagen Tiguan.

You’ll need to look elsewhere for hybrid or electric options, but the Karoq offers petrol and diesel engines that manage to blend performance and fuel economy effectively. There are manual and automatic gearboxes, plus four-wheel drive if you need it.

The Skoda Karoq might look chunky, but it’s barely any longer than the Skoda Scala – a rival to the Ford Focus. Crucially, though, the Karoq is over 13cm taller than a Scala or an Octavia, and that gives a big boost to headroom. The Karoq has a higher ride height than either of those cars, giving you a more commanding view of the road ahead and making it easier to get young children in and out. But it’s not so tall that you’d need a stepladder to get behind the wheel.

Like all its main rivals, the Karoq is a five-seater – you’ll need to upgrade to the Skoda Kodiaq for seven seats. Most adults will be comfortable in the rear seats, especially as you can slide them back and forth to adjust the passenger and boot space.

Even with these ‘VarioFlex’ sliding seats pushed fully back, the Karoq has a 479-litre boot. If rear legroom isn’t such a concern, you can have up to 588 litres of boot space – and triple that figure if you flip the rear seats down.

But it’s not just the large boot that makes the Karoq the king of practical family SUVs. Skoda’s ‘Simply Clever’ ideas are genuinely useful in everyday life, from the ice scraper hidden in the fuel filler cap to a boot light that doubles up as a removable torch. There’s also an umbrella stashed away for when you get caught in the rain.

The Karoq comes with a choice of familiar petrol or diesel engines, which have all been used in numerous other VW Group models. Most are pleasingly economical, but there is a range-topping petrol if you have a need for speed in your family SUV. Unlike the VW Tiguan or Hyundai Tucson, there aren’t any hybrid options.

Some Skoda Karoqs have four-wheel drive, but many don’t. Skoda’s 4x4 system is limited to more powerful engines and higher trim levels, and there has previously been a Karoq Scout that came with four-wheel drive as standard. Search for used Karoqs with four-wheel drive here.

A panoramic sunroof is standard on Karoqs in SportLine, Edition and Scout trim levels, and optional elsewhere.

That depends if you get a model with Skoda’s removable seats or not. SE and SE Drive don’t get these ‘Varioflex’ seats and come with a 521-litre boot – that’s about the same as a Peugeot 3008 or Vauxhall Grandland X. Higher-spec cars have this seat system which also allows the individual seats to be pushed forward or backward, so these Karoqs offer a boot space of between 479 and 588 litres depending on where the seats are. Fold all the seats down and you have a 1,605-litre space, or take them out completely to free up another 200 litres.