New Skoda Karoq Scout SUV: off-road-focused trim set for October debut

Skoda Karoq Scout brings chunky looks, extra equipment and standard four-wheel drive

This is the Skoda Karoq Scout, the latest toughened-up model from the Czech manufacturer that adds hard-wearing cladding, lots of standard equipment and standard four-wheel drive to the brand’s mid-sized SUV. The new Karoq trim level is set to make its public debut at the Paris Motor Show in October. Prices and full specifications have yet to be announced, but the Scout is likely to top the Skoda Karoq range when it arrives.

The Skoda Karoq Scout will offer a choice of one petrol and two diesel engines. The former is a 1.5-litre with 148bhp, paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch DSG automatic gearbox. Both diesels are 2.0-litres: there's a 148bhp version with a standard six-speed manual or optional DSG automatic, plus a 187bhp version with the automatic gearbox as standard. All models have four-wheel drive.

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Styling additions are the headline feature of the Scout over a standard Skoda Karoq. The car gets Skoda’s ‘Rough Terrain Package’, which includes chrome and silver-coloured scuff plates on the side skirts and front and rear bumpers, along with standard 18-inch wheels. Optional 19-inch alloys are also set to be offered.

The rough-and-tumble aesthetic continues inside, where the Skoda Karoq Scout gets unique seat fabric in black with contrasting brown accents with all seats embroidered with Scout logos. There’s a multifunction steering wheel, stainless-steel pedals and LED lighting to further set the interior apart, along with a standard screen behind the steering wheel in place of conventional dials.

What does the Skoda Karoq Scout mean for car buyers?

Skoda’s Scout models have always added a little extra off-road character to existing models – the current Skoda Kodiaq Scout SUV and Skoda Octavia Scout estate feature similar upgrades to those planned for the forthcoming Karoq Scout. Choosing a slightly more rugged Skoda is as much about looks as practicality – no Scout is a fully fledged off-roader, but each can hold its own in less extreme conditions while looking the part and being less likely to suffer scratches and dents in vulnerable areas.

If you live in the countryside and regularly contend with farm tracks, fields or particularly rutted roads, choosing Scout specification makes a lot of sense thanks to the extra body protection on offer and the four-wheel drive safety net. In towns and cities, the specification makes less sense – we’d recommend sticking with a top-spec SE-L model insead.

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