How I upgraded from a VW Polo GT TDI to a Skoda Kushaq 1.5 TSI DSG

My Polo GT TDI was a “beast” of a car, and the driving dynamics of the car were extremely good.

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Hi everyone,

First of all, thank you for making me a part of this wonderful community. This is my first ever post on the Team BHP forum, and I hope I can contribute more often on this platform going forward.

This post is about how I ended up buying the Skoda Kushaq 1.5 DSG – Carbon Steel in May 2022. To start with, I owned a VW Polo GT TDI and when I started searching for a new car, I knew I will really have limited options to match the performance of the GT TDI at a budget of INR 15-20 lakhs. My Polo GT TDI was a “beast” of a car, and the driving dynamics of the car were extremely good. It was a 2015 model and the only reason I wanted an upgrade was due to space crunch in the Polo as the family is getting bigger and the poor road conditions around the new place I have moved to. I wanted an SUV to take care of long stretches of bad roads and potholes that come in my way of commute to office everyday. I also wanted a petrol car this time around given I was only able to drive my Polo for about 50k kms in 7 years. Below are the details of the cars I test drove before purchasing the Kushaq.

Jeep Compass petrol AT:

Even before test driving the car I knew from Team BHP forums that this car is not loved by the enthusiast given it is made for sedate driving. I always liked the looks of the car and therefore I thought I would at least give It a try. The test drive vehicle that came to my home had clocked 5k kms on odometer and I would say it must have been handled in a pretty rough manner. The car is definitely made for relaxed driving and I had to really push the paddle hard and wait for the power to kick in. Despite the SA suggesting me that the car is not performing that great as it was not serviced at all, I was just not convinced with the overall driving dynamics. Hence Jeep was ticked off from my list.

Tata Harrier:

I did not want a diesel car, but I did want to try the Tata Harrier as it has the X factor, especially the exterior looks really good and even though I would have had to stretch my budget by about 5-6 lakhs, I thought it was worth trying at least. The car performed really well on bad stretches of road, and I felt really comfortable driving the car. It did feel like a bigger car specially coming from the Polo but I was not uncomfortable anytime with the size of the car. The interiors of the car especially the touch screen really needs an upgrade. However this was something I could have lived with given the car performed well in terms of driving, making me feel secure and the space it offered. I almost wanted to finalize the car, but then I read a lot of horror stories on the forum about the after sales service and how it is still a half baked product. To me spending more than my intended budget and taking a leap of faith with Tata was not worth it.

MG Hector and Astor:

Some of my colleagues in office suggested me to check out the MG products and I was not convinced given MG is a new brand and still has some work to do to build service centers. I did test drive both the cars back to back and somehow did not like either of them. I test drove the CVT version of both the cars and the SA kept on suggesting me to test drive the turbo AT of the Astor but it just does not have the road presence to spend around 20 lakh. It was just not making sense to me. Just my personal opinion.

Skoda Kushaq:

I know Skoda 2.0 strategy has some sort of polarizing view specially from the legacy owners of VW/Skoda cars. I feel every car in this segment has some pros and cons and therefore I went with an unbiased view while test driving the Kushaq. I did not test drive the Taigun because I liked the looks of the Kushaq, more subtle than the Taigun and I knew Kushaq/Taigun being cousins both will offer same driving dynamics. I test drove both 1.0 and 1.5 DSG and immediately felt connected with the 1.5 DSG. The car has really good driving dynamics, still has a decent door thud ensuring safety and it did take the potholes and bad stretches of road decently well. Now I know DSG is notorious, but remember I was going in for Harrier so I though lets save the money and keep it aside for DSG repairs in future. Also Skoda’s 4 year plus extended warranty was reassuring.

I did not test drive the Koreans as some of my friends own them and I have driven their cars, but did not feel the connect. Also, the XUV700 was not considered given the insane amount of waiting time.

I booked the car in April 2022 and got the delivery in May 2022. So far so good! Coming from a manual, the automatic does make the driving a bit relaxed. The ventilated seats- though not as good as I thought it would be do offer some comfort to the back. Will keep sharing the details about my Kushaq on this forum regularly from here onwards.

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