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The successful KAROQ model has received an upgrade. ŠKODA has used a more refined design language, sustainable materials, new technologies and a choice of efficient latest-generation EVO engines.
Since its launch as the second SUV model range in 2017, more than half a million KAROQs have been produced, making the smaller brother of the KODIAQ a mainstay in the ŠKODA line-up. The compact SUV is currently on sale in 60 countries.
The new KAROQ is characterised by the updated design language of ŠKODA’s current SUVs. The wider, now hexagonal ŠKODA grille and the new front apron lend the car a rugged look. The slightly longer rear spoiler lengthens the body visually and, together with air curtains at the front, aerodynamically optimised alloy wheels and the now covered underbody, reduces the drag coefficient by more than 9 per cent, achieving a cd of 0.30. The headlights, which like the tail lights are slimmer, feature a new four-light cluster design and as a first for the KAROQ, are now available with full-LED Matrix technology on request.
The new KAROQ is available in the SE Drive and SE L specifications and as a SportLine variant. The SUV is 4,390 mm long and 1,841 mm wide. The height of the front-wheel-drive models is 1,603 mm and the wheelbase measures 2,638 mm, while KAROQs with all-wheel drive are 1,608 mm high and feature a wheelbase of 2,630 mm. When fitted with standard seats, the boot capacity is 521 litres, or 1,630 litres with the rear seats folded down. With the optional VarioFlex seats (standard on SE L), the boot volume is 588 litres, 1,605 litres with the seats folded down, and 1,810 l with the rear seats removed.
The restyled, body-coloured sculptured bumper below the wider and now hexagonal ŠKODA grille creates a stunning look. It features a wide, lower air inlet with a crystalline mesh-effect design, a rugged, black-grained front spoiler and L-shaped air curtains on the sides. They direct the air through the sides of the front bumper, reducing air vortices and improving airflow at the wheel arches. For the first time, KAROQ models with all-wheel drive feature aerodynamically optimised fuel tank undertrays that also cover the rear axle to reduce drag under the car.
The slimmer headlights extend to the ŠKODA grille, and the daytime running lights are split in two. This is the first KAROQ that can be fitted with full-LED Matrix headlights, in which two LED modules in each – for low beam and high beam – are arranged one above the other. They provide a distinct four-light cluster, which is particularly striking in driving mode in the dark. The standard variant comes with LED modules in the upper part of the headlight unit for low and high beam along with a separate fog light in the lower housing. The tail lights are even more clear-cut, forming the characteristic C-shaped light cluster and exhibiting ŠKODA-typical crystalline structures.
They come with full-LED technology and feature dynamic indicators and an animated welcome effect, as standard.
An extended, body-coloured rear spoiler makes the vehicle look longer when viewed from the side. The SE L-specification KAROQ and the SportLine variant come with side finlets, which – together with the spoiler – reduce air turbulence at the rear, improving the car’s aerodynamics and lowering its CO2 emissions. The KAROQ’s aerodynamics are also improved by the new Scutus (standard 17-inch for SE Drive) and Procyon (18-inch) alloy wheels. They feature plastic Aero inserts that reduce air turbulence around the wheels. The Aero trim is available in matt black or silver for the Scutus wheels (standard 17-inch silver for SE Drive). The polished black and aerodynamically optimised 18-inch Miran wheel is brand-new and standard on SE L. The KAROQ’s restyled rear apron is body-coloured below the loading sill while its rugged black plastic rear diffuser exhibits a sculptured shape.
ŠKODA offers a total of nine colours for the KAROQ. The metallic Phoenix Orange and Graphite Grey paint finishes are new to the range. They complement the metallic Brilliant Silver, Velvet Red, pearlescent Moon White, Petrol Blue and pearlescent Black Magic paintwork, as well as the standard colours Energy Blue and Meteor Grey.
There is a wider choice of seat covers for the updated KAROQ. When ordered with the optional Eco pack, the KAROQ now comes with sustainably produced materials made from recycled PET bottles. There is a wider range of colours and materials to choose from for the SE Drive and SE L trim levels, and the front-passenger seat is now available with a memory function and electric adjustment. The optional tri-zone Climatronic offers increased comfort, while a new decorative trim on the dashboard and doors, as well as additional colours for the LED ambient lighting, create more visual highlights.
The update includes a wider choice of colours and materials for the SE Drive and SE L trim levels, and they come with new dashboard and door trims. The KAROQ SE Drive, for example, sports a new Unique Chrome dashboard trim and the door panels now exhibit an Anodized Cross Line design. In addition to the black fabric seat covers (standard), the seats can be upholstered in black Suedia microfibre or black leather. These two options are also available for the KAROQ SE L. Alternatively, the standard black fabric seat covers in that specification can be replaced with beige leather seats. The dashboard bears Piano Black decorative strips, while the door trim features a soft-touch Linear Diamonds design.
Piano Black detailing on the dashboard and centre console is also part of the Eco pack, which is optional for the SE L trim. The soft-touch Nisha decorative trim on the door panels creates a new visual highlight. The sustainable seat covers in the Eco pack make their KAROQ debut. They are made from recycled PET bottles, among other materials, and come with leather-style design features. Parts of the seats and the armrests are upholstered in Suedia microfibre in the Eco pack-specific shade of Mocha Brown. The extended LED ambient lighting now illuminates the front as well as the rear door panels in one of ten colour options and the footwell in white. This is a standard feature included in the Eco pack and optional for all other variants.
For even greater levels of comfort, the updated KAROQ can now be equipped with tri-zone Climatronic. An electrically adjustable front-passenger seat including memory function is another option making its KAROQ debut (available from the SE L specification upwards). This is a convenient feature to save personal settings and restore them at any time at the touch of a button. The front seats are also available with electrically adjustable lumbar support as an option. Other options include VarioFlex rear seats. This system consists of three separate seats, split in a ratio of 40:20:40, that can be individually adjusted or completely removed. With the rear seats removed, the KAROQ boasts a maximum boot capacity of 1,810 litres.
The engines available for the KAROQ include five advanced and efficient power units from Volkswagen Group’s latest EVO generation. The power outputs offered by the three TSI petrol engines and two diesels range from 110 PS (81 kW) to 190 PS (140 kW), with the top-level 2.0 TSI exclusively reserved for the all-wheel-drive KAROQ SportLine with seven-speed DSG. All-wheel drive with an electronically controlled multi-plate clutch and seven-speed DSG are also available for the more powerful of the two diesels.
The entry-level powertrain for the KAROQ is a three-cylinder 1.0 TSI combined with a six-speed manual gearbox. With an output of 110 PS (81 kW), this latest-generation EVO engine is particularly efficient. Low emissions are guarenteed by an injection pressure of up to 350 bar and an innovative, 150-μm-thin (0.15 mm) plasma-coated layer in the cylinder crankcase replacing the cast-iron cylinder liners. This reduces internal friction in the cylinders and results in better distribution and dissipation of heat in the combustion chamber, which lowers the thermal load on the engine. The four-cylinder 1.5 TSI petrol engine with an output of 150 PS (110 kW) also features Active Cylinder Technology (ACT), which further reduces fuel consumption by automatically shutting down two cylinders when engine load is low.
The most powerful engine delivering 190 PS (140 kW) is reserved exclusively for the KAROQ SportLine. The 2.0 TSI transfers its power to all four wheels via a seven-speed DSG as standard. The all-wheel-drive system makes use of a sixth-generation electronically controlled multi-plate clutch, which is roughly 0.8 kg lighter than its predecessor and more efficient. An integrated control unit allows the system to react more quickly, disengaging and re-engaging all-wheel drive as required within fractions of a second.
The two EVO diesels each have a displacement of two litres. The more powerful variant produces 150 PS (110 kW). Both units come with a six-speed manual transmission as standard; a seven-speed DSG is optional. If fitted with a DSG, the 110-kW engine transmits power to the road via all-wheel drive. The EA288 EVO engines feature an SCR system with twin dosing technology to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions. Here, AdBlue® is injected into two selective catalytic reduction converters that are arranged one after the other. One of the converters is installed in closer proximity to the engine in the exhaust gas purification module and the second is located further away from the engine in the chassis floor.
KAROQ engines at a glance:
1.0 TSI EVO
1.5 TSI EVO
2.0 TSI EVO
7-speed DSG 4×4
2.0 TDI EVO
2.0 TDI EVO
7-speed DSG 4×4
* preliminary data
The SE Drive and SE L trim levels, as well as the SportLine variant, can be equipped with Dynamic Chassis Control (DCC) and progressive steering as an option. DCC continuously assesses the driving situation and adjusts damping and steering accordingly.
The basic settings – Eco, Comfort, Normal and Sport – can be chosen in Driving Mode Select, while in the Individual mode, these can be fine-tuned. Progressive steering features a variable steering ratio. This depends on the steering angle and allows better handling at higher speeds and greater agility in corners. At the same time, the steering forces are significantly lower at larger steering angles, for example when turning at low speeds in the city or when parking, making the vehicle easier to manoeuvre.
The KAROQ is going fully digital later this year when it will be sold with a digital instrument panel only. The Virtual Cockpit (as the digital instrument cluster is also referred to) features an 8-inch display as standard; a larger screen measuring 10.25 inches is optional. Thanks to a built-in eSIM, the SUV is always online, which allows access to a plethora of ŠKODA Connect mobile online services. Infotainment apps provide weather forecasts and the latest news, and include calendar management.
The KAROQ features two touchscreen options from the Volkswagen Group’s third generation modular infotainment matrix. The Amundsen systems feature an 8-inch touchscreen and can receive web radio (as an option) thanks to the permanent internet connection. The system can be operated via the touchscreen, buttons and knurled wheels on the multifunction steering wheel, and the digital voice assistant Laura, who – backed by online data – understands 15 languages. The Amundsen system also offers a navigation function and a Wi-Fi hotspot. The range-topping system, Columbus, is available as an option and features a 9.2-inch display and can be controlled using gestures. Map and software updates are installed ‘over the air’.
Every KAROQ will feature a digital instrument cluster as standard later this year. The 8-inch display will replace the previous analogue instruments. From the SE Drive trim level upwards, the Virtual Cockpit is available as an option with a customisable 10.25-inch display. There are five basic layouts to choose from, with an additional model-specific background for the KAROQ SportLine.
Smartphones can be paired with the car’s infotainment systems using Wireless SmartLink technology, Android Auto or Apple CarPlay. The range of extras includes a USB-C socket on the rear-view mirror to power a dashcam, for example. Thanks to a permanent internet connection, the KAROQ has access to a comprehensive range of ŠKODA Connect mobile online services, including remote vehicle access via the MyŠKODA app. This feature allows the vehicle to be locked and unlocked via a smartphone, the car’s parking location to be displayed on a map, and the horn and indicators to be activated to make the KAROQ easy to find in a large car park. Infotainment apps display news and weather and can connect a Google calendar to the infotainment system.
The KAROQ offers further improved assistance and safety systems as well as up to nine airbags. Travel Assist incorporates seven assistance systems, including Predictive Cruise Control, Adaptive Lane Assist and an improved version of Traffic Sign Recognition. The optional Crew Protect Assist system reacts to impending collisions to prevent an accident or minimise the severity of its consequences.
The KAROQ can be fitted with up to nine airbags. Driver and front-passenger airbags are fitted as standard in the EU, as are front side airbags, curtain airbags and a driver’s knee airbag. Side airbags in the second row of seats are optional as part of Crew Protect Assist. If the vehicle sensors – now also at the rear – detect an imminent collision or register sudden braking, the system automatically closes any open windows and, if necessary, the panoramic roof, and activates the hazard lights and pre-tensions the front seat belts. Following impact, Multi-Collision Brake brings the vehicle to a stop, preventing it from rolling any further in an uncontrolled manner. In the event of an accident, the eCall+ emergency call now also informs the rescue services about the number of people in the vehicle and how the accident occurred.
KAROQs sold in the EU feature Front Assist with City Emergency Brake and Predictive Pedestrian Protection as standard. The optional Travel Assist feature comprises seven assistance systems, some of which are also available separately. These include Predictive Cruise Control, which uses images from the camera on the windscreen as well as data from the navigation system and, if specified, reacts in good time to speed limits or corners. If the KAROQ is fitted with a DSG, the ACC’s Stop & Go function can automatically bring the vehicle to a standstill and have it pull away again within up to three seconds. Travel Assist also includes a more accurate version of Traffic Sign Recognition, thanks to an improved camera, and Adaptive Lane Assist is now able to identify roadworks and all road markings. Travel Assist also includes Emergency Assist, Traffic Jam Assist and Side Assist with Rear Traffic Alert, which warns the driver of vehicles approaching from behind up to 70 metres away. Using Hands-on Detect, Travel Assist also checks whether the driver is touching the steering wheel every 15 seconds or if they no longer have control due to a potential medical emergency. In this case, Emergency Assist activates the hazard lights and brings the car to a stop in its current lane. The optional Park Assist feature can automatically manoeuvre the vehicle into and out of parking spaces, while the integrated Manoeuvre Assist system detects obstacles in front of and behind the vehicle, automatically bringing the KAROQ to a stop if required. The 360-degree image of the optional Area View system, as well as the optional Trailer Assist feature, make parking even more convenient. Some of the assistance systems mentioned will not be available until later in 2022.
The SportLine is the range-topping model in the KAROQ line-up. Apart from the 1.0 TSI, the KAROQ SportLine is available with any of the engines in the range. The 2.0 TSI petrol engine with an output of 190 PS (140 kW), which comes with a seven-speed DSG and all-wheel drive as standard, is exclusively reserved for the KAROQ SportLine. The exterior of this sporty range-topping model is characterised by a host of black design details, exclusive alloy wheels and SportLine badges. Black sports styling also continues in the interior.
The SportLine is the top-end model in the KAROQ range. The SportLine’s grille with gloss black surround and matt black slats provide a stunning contrast to its body-coloured front apron featuring a model-specific central air inlet and black detailing. The wing mirror caps are also gloss black, as are the window frames, roof rails and rear diffuser. The side skirts are body-coloured, as is the rear apron that features striking, built-in chrome-effect tailpipes. The rear side windows and the rear window are tinted (SunSet), and the front wings are adorned with a SportLine badge. The KAROQ SportLine comes with full-LED Matrix headlights as standard.
As standard, the KAROQ SportLine rolls on black 18-inch Procyon alloys with matt black plastic Aero inserts.
Black sports styling runs through the interior, from the roof lining and pillars to the breathable ThermoFlux covers of the sports seats with integrated headrests. At up to 360 litres per minute, the ThermoFlux covers allow 4.5 times more air to pass through than conventional fabric, significantly improving seating comfort. Leather seats are optional. Silver contrasting stitching can be found on the leather gearstick, the centre armrest and the three-spoke multifunction sports steering wheel adorned with a SportLine badge. Piano Black decorative strips on the dashboard and carbon-effect trim on the door panels provide the finishing touches in the interior. The decorative front door sill trims feature KAROQ lettering, while the pedal caps sport a stainless-steel look. The 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster features a SportLine-specific background.