The Skoda Rapid is right now the best-selling model from the Czech carmaker in India. The compact sedan accounts for close to 1000 units a month, and Skoda India’s Brand Director, Zac Hollis says that it’s because of the TSI engine. In fact, he says that right now the company sells more units of the TSI version of the Rapid in India compared to the older petrol and diesel models combined. In the last six months Skoda Auto India sold nearly 4000 units of the Rapid, whereas during the same period last year, when it was selling the older petrol and diesel models, sales stood at a little over 2700 units. Hollis revealed this information on the latest episode of Freewheeling With SVP. Reiterating the company’s confidence in going petrol-only in India and the TSI strategy, Hollis said, “The Rapid, we are selling more TSIs now than we sold the petrol and diesel combined before. And that for me is also a good indicator is being well accepted by Indian customers.”
The information was shared as part of his extended answer to our question on how the company plans to counter the huge demand for diesel vehicles in the compact SUV space, a segment that it has recently entered with the all-new Skoda Kushaq. Sharing his opinion on the matter, Hollis said that he doesn’t think there is a big future for diesel vehicles in India, especially in the passenger vehicle space. He pointed out the with the stringent emission norms diesel cars will get more and more expensive for customers to buy, and thus the business case for petrol vs diesel becomes quite weak.
Many just have diesel in their head without actually doing the math and thinking about it. And a lot of people like the torque of diesels. Well, of course with the TSI you get very good levels of torque as well, at quite low revs. So, I think that will also satisfy the diesel lovers who like torque. And in terms of efficiency and cost of ownership, the TSI will also be very, very competitive. So, I am comfortable with our TSI strategy. I am comfortable with our TSI engines,” Hollis added.
Right now, the Skoda Rapid is powered by a 1.0-litre three-cylinder TSI petrol engine as standard. The turbocharged motor is tuned to make 108 bhp and 175 Nm of peak torque and it comes mated to a 6-speed manual gearbox, along with an optional 6-speed automatic torque converter unit. Skoda is also working on a CNG version of the Rapid sedan and the car is under testing right now. Once launched, we would expect it to boost Skoda Auto India’s volumes from the compact sedan even more
News source- Carandbike