On the face of it, the Karoq appears initially more expensive than the Seat Ateca, but that’s because Skoda has no equivalent of Seat’s basic S trim. Measure their like-for-like trim levels and you’ll find that while the Karoq is slightly pricier than the Ateca, it comes with more equipment.
Running costs, such as insurance and servicing, are very much inline with the Ateca’s, although predicted resale values infer that the Karoq will lose slightly less money in depreciation after three years.
Despite the 1.5 TSI 150 being our favourite engine, it’s not as economical in the real world as the Ateca 1.4 TSI 150 – in our True MPG testing, the Karoq 1.5 managed a relatively disappointing combined 36.0mpg. It still has lower CO2 emissions than the 2.0 TDI 150 diesel, though (because the 2.0 TDI comes only with CO2-increasing four-wheel drive) – something for company car users to bear in mind. The best company car choice for low benefit-in-kind tax is the 1.6 TDI 115.
Skoda Karoq equipment
Entry-level SE trim looks to be the best value for money, because it provides all the kit you really need. That’s goodies such as 17in alloy wheels, privacy glass, electric front and rear windows, cruise control and dual-zone climate control. You also get the excellent 8.0in touchscreen system we detailed in the infotainment section.
That said, we’d definitely select the VarioFlex seats as an option for the extra versatility they provide and it’s worth thinking about some of the less expensive options that make life easier, including a heated windscreen and a rear-view camera.
SE Technology is a trim designed with company users in mind, adding extras including adaptive cruise control and front and rear parking sensors.
SE L trim is worth considering if you like a few extra luxuries and fancy built-in sat-nav, while range-topping Edition comes with oodles of kit, but is a bit too expensive to recommend.
Skoda Karoq reliability
Skoda came above average in our most recent reliability survey, finishing a creditable 13th out of 32 manufactures surveyed. To put that into context, Seat and VW were 21st and 22nd respectively, while Peugeot came in at 27th.
You get a bog-standard three-year/60,000-mile manufacturer’s warranty, which you can extend for a reasonable additional cost up to five years or 100,000 miles.
Skoda Karoq safety & security
All Karoqs should keep you relatively safe, thanks to standard automatic emergency braking along with the usual selection of airbags and other electronic safety wizardry. This helps the Karoq achieve its five-star Euro NCAP crash test rating, with good scores in individual categories. Some points to note are that it markedly outscores the Peugeot 3008 for adult protection, but the 3008 and Seat Ateca turn the tables with a better child protection rating.
Options to consider are an additional Isofix point on the front passenger seat, and the pricey but fulsome Assistance Package 1. This includes adaptive cruise control, lane assist, blindspot detect, traffic jam assist and emergency assist, although it’s only available on cars with an automatic gearbox.
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There’s no stripped-down S version of the Karoq, so the range starts with well-equipped SE models. These get 17in alloy wheels, adjustable lumbar support, a leather-trimmed steering wheel, electric front and rear windows, dual-zone climate control, cruise control, rear parking sensors, auto lights and wipers, an 8.0in touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and 60/40 split-folding rear seats. Add the super-practical VarioFlex seats and the SE is pretty much all you need.
Designed with company users in mind, SE Technology adds extras including adaptive cruise control and front and rear parking sensors.
The next rung up gets a decent blend of useful equipment and some luxuries. The big news is the addition of VarioFlex seats that add a large dose of extra versatility. You also get Alcantara upholstery, heated front seats, an 8.0in touchscreen with sat-nav, keyless entry and go, front parking sensors, a rear-view camera, LED headlights and bigger 18in alloy wheels. Well worth considering if you can stretch to it.
The top trim level adds 19in wheels, a panoramic roof, electrically adjustable front seats with memory, leather upholstery, a 9.2in infotainment system, wireless phone charging, lane assist, blindspot monitoring and an electrically operated tailgate. It’s only available with the more powerful engines, making it quite expensive.