Much has been made of the ‘perfect fit’ tag which comes from the KAMIQ name, and with good reason – a small SUV which is slightly larger than its rivals. It gives the KAMIQ an almost TARDIS like ability to comfortably seat the tallest of people (both front and rear), while still remaining … small.
ŠKODA say that it’s the perfect city car: a useful range of engines and drivetrains, enough space for a family, small footprint, tight turning circle (tighter than most of its rivals), up to 56.6mpg and thanks to the thin front pillars, class-leading visibility.
Add in a useful range of standard equipment, such as lane-keeping assist, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, and seven airbags, and you can see why it has been awarded a 5 Star rating from the European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP).
Of course, we’re here to tell you how great the KAMIQ is, how it fits your lifestyle, that reliability has never been better, that there’s a whole world of great little features that you’ll come to love, but we also need to address the elephant in the room: the ŠKODA brand hasn’t always been quite so popular.
Despite being one of the oldest car manufacturing companies that has continuously produced vehicles since 1895, the reputation of the brand came from being a state-owned factory that paid little heed to innovation, technology and modern manufacturing processes. All of the cars produced were somewhat dated, both in terms of styling and reliability.
However, that all changed in 2000, when ŠKODA became part of the Volkswagen Group. Today, they’re one of the most popular brands in the world, selling cars in over 100 different countries, and second only to Porsche (also part of the VW Group) when it comes to profitability. Forget everything you know of ŠKODA from old, this is a different era.
Based on the same platform as the Volkswagen T-Cross and Seat Arona, the engineers at ŠKODA have added a little extra legroom by extending the platform, and wheelbase; there’s plenty of room for a six-footer in the front, with one behind also, still with a few inches between knees and seatback.
The KAMIQ is still classified as a small SUV, but if space is premium for you, it’s one of the larger miniature SUVs on the market, and when you combine the tactile cabin materials, neat designs and standard equipment, it’s easy to forget that you’re driving the entry-level offering.
ŠKODA have incorporated some great features which aren’t necessarily expected, but all help to show that the KAMIQ has been thought through by the engineers and designers – there’s 26-litres of storage cubbies dotted throughout the inside, hidden plastic strips that automatically pop out from the doors to avoid damaging the car next to you (if you’ve ever damaged a car when opening a door, or had your car damaged by the same method, you’ll understand what an idea this is), built-in umbrella, and ice scraper in the fuel cap … simple touches that absolutely work in the real world.
A number of manufacturers try too hard to offer everything possible – ten different engine combinations, too many seating options, a dozen different trim levels, and quite honestly, there’s such a thing as too many choices.
While the KAMIQ does give you some optional extras, ŠKODA have kept it practical, and the standard range has been simplified, but there’s nothing missing. There’s four different choices of engine for example – 94hp 1.0 litre petrol, 114hp 1.0 litre petrol, 148hp 1.5 litre petrol, and a 1.6 litre diesel. The range is wide enough to cater for most tastes and needs, without being overly complicated.
Equally, depending on the engine choice, there’s a five or six speed manual gearbox, or an automatic – enough to satisfy all demands, and nothing more. But this isn’t to say that the KAMIQ is basic, just that there’s nothing superfluous.
With that said, depending on trim level or options ticked, you won’t be lacking for equipment, there’s everything from 6.5 inch touchscreen through to 9.2 inch with built-in sat-nav, voice assistant, USB ports, Android Auto and Apple Carplay, rear parking sensors, rear-view camera and adaptive suspension.
The KAMIQ may not carry a ‘prestige’ badge on the bonnet, but that’s part of the beauty – essentially what you’re getting is a German-engineered SUV, with all of the trimmings, including those fancy dynamic indicators (another neat touch from ŠKODA), without the brash, bold, name badge.
The KAMIQ really is the perfect fit for modern living: it delivers style, reliability, and driving comfort, with an added dash of common sense, family practical touches.
If you’d like to find out more about the ŠKODA KAMIQ, contact one of our friendly professionals to discuss your need.