ZIG Opinion: Here’s Why A Kushaq Rider Would Make So Much More Sense For Skoda

The Rider brand name was associated with the first-gen Octavia and since then it has been successful for the Czech carmaker


Skoda India recently launched the Kushaq, starting at Rs 10.50 lakh (ex-showroom). Available in three trims (Active, Ambition, and Style), the Kushaq’s entry-level variant is priced significantly higher than its arch-rivals, the Hyundai Creta and Kia Seltos.

Skoda boss Zac Hollis has said that going forward, there could be more variants of the Kushaq. This got us thinking about whether the carmaker could introduce a new base variant, Rider, for the compact SUV. 

In this opinion piece, we list three reasons why it would make a lot of sense for Skoda to do just that:

Rider Is A Popular Brand


Associated with Skoda since the early 2000s, ‘Rider’ was first introduced in the first-gen Octavia and recently in the Rapid TSI. In fact, the Rapid Rider is the most economical compact sedan in the segment, with the Rider AT undercutting every other offering in its space. Its popularity shot through the roof, and the carmaker had to pause bookings for some time last year to cater to the demands. 

Now that the Kushaq fights it out in an even more hotly contested compact-SUV segment, we feel the value-for-money Rider would be a hit among potential buyers. 

Will Bring Down The Price Below Rs 10 Lakh


The Rider brand is all about competitive, affordable pricing. Currently, the Kushaq’s base Active trim is priced at Rs 10.50 lakh (ex-showroom), around Rs 55,000 more than the Creta’s E and Seltos’s HTE entry-level trims. Sure, the Kushaq Active packs more features, but you need to shell out more compared to Hyundai and Kia’s counterparts.

A Kushaq Rider with cleverly packed features will allow Skoda to price the SUV below Rs 10 lakh, making it a tempting (read viable) option for those seeking a European compact SUV on a budget. And based on Skoda’s track record with the Rider, it should come with all the essentials, which brings us to the next point. 

Should Get All The Essential Features


Like the Rapid, the Kushaq Rider should boast all essentials like a 2-DIN audio system, air-conditioning, remote locking, all four power windows, dual airbags, ABS with EBD, and rear parking sensors. 

With all the bases covered, the Kushaq Rider should keep customers satisfied. And with some spare cash in hand, one could also invest in aftermarket alloy wheels or premium upholstery. 


So there you have it. We thought these were the most compelling reasons why Skoda might do well with the Kushaq Rider. Currently, the SUV retails between Rs 10.50 lakh and Rs 17.60 lakh (ex-showroom). Its primary rivals are the Hyundai Creta, Kia Seltos, and the upcoming Volkswagen Taigun

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