Skoda globally unveiled the all-new Kushaq in India yesterday and first impressions are really very positive. The Skoda Kushaq has everything it needs to be a successful product in India - style, tons of features, good driving dynamics, safety and potent engines. The Kushaq is the first Skoda Auto Volkswagen India product that is underpinned by the MQB-A0-IN platform. Given the fact that the Kushaq has 95% localized content, pricing should be very competitive too. A comparison with the Kia Seltos - one of the best selling SUVs in this segment - is thus inevitable. So here we are comparing the specs, dimensions, design and features of the Skoda Kushaq vs Kia Seltos.
Skoda Kushaq vs Kia Seltos - Dimensions
A look at the dimensions reveal that the Seltos is longer, taller and wider than the Kushaq and by a considerable margin in some aspects. The Kushaq does actually look a tad bit smaller than the Seltos even with naked eyes. That said, the size of the Kushaq should be very convenient for most Indian roads. Where the Kushaq does have an edge over the Seltos is with its wheelbase, which is the longest in the segment. That translates to good space on the inside. Although the Kushaq has the longer wheelbase, it is still shorter than the Seltos because it has really short overhangs.
Both the Skoda Kushaq and the Kia Seltos are offered with two petrol engines. The base 1.5L naturally aspirated petrol engine on the Seltos is comparable to the 1.0L turbo-petrol engine on the Kushaq, While both engines are almost identical in terms of power, the Kushaq has more torque, thanks to the turbocharger. It produces almost as much power as the Seltos but with a smaller engine and one less cylinder, again, thanks to the turbocharger. While both engines are offered with a 6-speed manual gearbox, the automatic gearbox on the Seltos is a CVT unit. Meanwhile, the Kushaq gets a proper torque-converter automatic gearbox.
The larger turbo-petrol engines of both SUVs are more evenly matched in terms of specs. Both engines have four cylinders, although the Kushaq has slightly more displacement. The Kushaq still has 10hp and 8Nm more torque than the Seltos. So in terms of specs on paper, the Kushaq clearly has the upper hand. Interestingly, both SUVs are offered with a 7-speed DCT and a 6-speed manual gearbox with their turbo-petrol engines. In this spec, we bet the Skoda Kushaq will be much more fun to drive with its fantastic 1.5L TSI engine and famed 7-speed DSG gearbox.
Where the Seltos does have an edge over the Kushaq is with its diesel engine. Kia also offers a 115PS/250Nm 1.5L diesel engine on the Seltos. The engine comes mated to either a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed torque converter automatic gearbox. Now diesel engines have typically been more popular in this compact SUV segment, and there are statistics to prove the same. This is where the Kushaq will really miss out on when compared to its rivals.
Skoda Kushaq vs Kia Seltos - Exterior Design
While styling can definitely be a subjective choice, its hard to pick between these SUVs in terms of how they look. When Kia debuted the Seltos back in 2019, it was easily the best looking car in its segment, and perhaps even in a segment above. Now in 2021, the Kia Seltos still looks as fresh and contemporary as it has always been. Perhaps a little more extroverted than the Kushaq, the Seltos blends simple and flamboyant designs very seamlessly to make for a handsome muscular SUV. The signature LED headlamps and the well-sculped face and rear-end still turn heads on the road.
the Skoda Kushaq adopts a much more conventional but striking design philosophy. It looks typically Skoda with its butterfly grille, flanked by split LED headlamps on either side. The proportions are spot on, the clean and crisp lines give it a no-nonsense look and the heavy body cladding and rugged skid plates on the front and rear bumper give it a rugged and muscular SUV appeal. It hard to choose between the two SUVs in terms of how they look and it really boils down to personal preference.
Skoda Kushaq vs Kia Seltos - Interior Design
Fortunately, both SUVs have a very likeable interior design as well. The large binnacle housing the instrument cluster and the infotainment screen continue to look as dramatic as ever. The asymmetrical design for the center console, the flat-bottom steering wheel, and the general quality and fit and finish of the interior continue to be highlights of the Kia Seltos. The ergonomics of the switchgear are also pretty spot on, just like the Kushaq.
Speaking of which, the Skoda Kushaq has a gorgeous interior layout as well. The design is flamboyant and the dashboard has a beautiful layered effect. The gloss-black trims on the dual-tone interior add a sense of drama and the ergonomics are spot on here as well. Overall, both interiors feel equally premium and upmarket but perhaps it is the Kushaq that looks a little more beautiful.
While both SUVs are very well loaded with features, there are some key differences that are worth pointing out. And it can be said that the Kia Seltos has the upper hand in some respects. While most features are standard across both SUVs, the Seltos additionally gets a heads-up display (only SUV with this feature in this segment), 360-degree parking camera, 8-way powered driver seat, a 7-inch digital MID screen, and even a Bose sound system. Other features such as ventilated seats, wireless charging, connected car tech, cruise control, steering mounted controls, etc are standard on both SUVs.
Stay tuned to IndianAutosBlog.com for more such comparisons and latest four-wheeler news.