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Kushaq: 3-month ownership experience with 10 likes by ex-Polo owner

I also shortlisted the VW Taigun & Kia Seltos. But the decision of getting the Kushaq was driven more from the heart than the mind.

BHPian pravs3012 recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

  • Vehicle: Kushaq MT 1.5 - Style
  • Booking and delivery: August 2022
  • Distance covered till date: 1500 km

Likes

  1. Engine: 1.5 MT – just awesome. The power-torque combination is confidence-inspiring. I consider myself a conservative driver but I know the car can provide the necessary shift when needed.
  2. Seating comfort: 4 adults are treated with absolute luxury.
  3. Driving position: I am 6 ft tall with a lean frame, and this suits me well.
  4. Size: A like for me but may not be for others – I am not worried about the road presence.
  5. Visibility: Big difference coming from Polo.
  6. Cabin sound: Good handling but I feel this is yet to be tested.
  7. Boot space: Maybe smaller in numbers but well-designed and definitely good for our usage.
  8. Exterior: Subjective but my family loves it.
  9. Skoda smart features: Make the spacing of different pockets / charging points very usable.
  10. Safety Rating: This is more of a relief than happiness as safety was one of the primary reasons we booked Skoda (or VW) and hence anything less might have left a bad taste in the mouth.

Not so likes

  1. Any family with regular usage for 4+ adults: 5th passenger is not so welcome unless a kid or for a short distance.
  2. Positioning of AC controls: I feel I need to focus away for a moment. On the other hand, steering controls take some time to used to.
  3. AC cooling: Can be termed average. Takes time to cool and the sound is a bit more for my comfort. Bangalore weather last 2 months means I never had to keep it at a higher level and that helped.
  4. Cabin size: Subjective but a driver with a bigger frame/physique may find the cabin slightly smaller for comfort. Given the segment, someone may want to compare the others for exact dimensions.
  5. Average interiors: Wish they were better designed.
  6. Tires: I have the manufacturer-given CEAT but I am sure people would want to go for better variants.
  7. A feeling of lottery: You may get a 10-inch or 8-inch display no matter the cost you are paying.
  8. I am not a music-savvy person but so far felt this is not the league of what Seltos had (BOSE, of course).
  9. Wipers – average.
  10. A constant feeling: Why 20 lakhs given some average stuff inside (listed above)?

Booking experience

Our first car was Polo Highline Petrol which I drove since 2014. An absolute beauty in looks and driving, it was perfect for a family of 3 and occasional 5-member drives. I actually learned driving in that. Barring initial scratches / dents – maintained it very close to heart. Followed all the service routines and ensured insurance is used perfectly to clear off any hatred signs.

We drove 67k km and it was a very tough decision to let it go. The primary reasons being rear seat spacing and my legs starting to complain of the seating position – age catching up perhaps? I can go on and write more but I would summarize by one line – the moment it was driven away I kept looking at it till I could and that took me back to 2014 when I had to let my kid enter the daycare gate and I would watch him till I could.

Not to drown you in emotional well, let me jump to the second part.

Criteria of change

  • Safety (the fact it got 5 stars only helped me feel better about the decision).
  • Driving pleasure with seating comfort for a family of 3/4. We have an automated Kwid for city commutes. It does its job quite well.
  • Ground clearance.
  • Budget not exceeding 20 L.
  • Engine capacity – wanted more than what Polo offered.

Next steps: Test drives and booking

I shortlisted 4 cars in the preference order – Jeep, Taigun, Kushaq and Seltos.

The first one remained etched in my heart, but I cancelled the test drive simply because I did not want my heart to decide the budget. Loved both Taigun and Kushaq in the driving sense. Found Kushaq better in looks but Taigun in its interiors. Seltos was fun to drive, had amazing features, and the cabin was nothing short of a gadget gallery. The sales team was very smart and responsive. Why I decided against it – not very sure as it was a tough decision but somewhere deep in my heart VW’s experience played its role.

The story then on is a perfect example of a sales team helping you make a decision and Skoda SA just latched on to the opportunity while Taigun guys simply did not care at all. This should not mean anything in general and might be simply an individual experience.

I had decided to exchange Polo via a dealer and here again, the Skoda guys were very aggressive while the VW team was as laid back. I felt as if destiny is moving us toward Kushaq and on the same day we were driven to PPS motors, Jakkur- Bangalore.

My decision to go for 1.5 MT was clear from day one though it was challenged multiple times mainly to go for DSG by my wife and dealer. I had heard about improvements but wanted to still skip the potential DSG issues in future. I wanted honey orange, but my wife and son clearly zeroed in on the Red (Tornado) and I was vetoed. As I would be driving the car, color had to be as per family.

Booking process was straightforward. The delivery time was 2 weeks. The SA kept me in the loop all the time. He was fine for a PDI and shared details if I would like to go for it. Given the experience with him all this while and his sharing every detail and answering all the queries about the vehicle like OVRM, VIN, tires, I decided to skip that and trust my instincts.

And finally, the date arrived – took a gift for SA and completed the remaining formalities. There was a slight confusion regarding the payment of SMP. I was under the (wrong) impression that by removing it from the cost breakup, the dealer is paying but it meant I would pay at the time of delivery if I wanted it. Special shout out to Vaibhav from PPS Jakkur. He was very courteous and prompt throughout the process. He deserves a lot of credit for me going with Kushaq when comparing with Taigun.

The details are (booked in August 2022)

  • Ex-showroom: 17,19,000
  • Road Tax: 3,27,038
  • Loyalty bonus for Polo (-20k)
  • Insurance: Drive Assure: 55k (went with dealer)
  • Final Price = almost 21 lakhs including 25k for 4 years maintenance package and 30 for 5th and 6th-year warranty.
  • Just to mention, we also used HDFC Regalia to get a 25k discount.

I did not go for any PPF or any other accessory. Hindsight tells me I should have gone with different tires but that is left for the future now as the budget seemed stretched by that time.

Experience so far

  1. Took some time to adjust to the difference in engine power, torque and mainly the clutch/gear. I had to be careful taking it out of the basement as the car would move faster than I was used to. Engine is peppy and no speed actually feels like the number due to the smooth handling of a variety of roads.
  2. Suspension is good, if not great. Some potholes (not rare here) were felt but usually, the suspension and GC help.
  3. The driving is fun and so far during the only highway drive to Pondicherry, enjoyed it without a doubt. The car beeps every time you cross 80 and continuously above 120. I don’t prefer driving above 100 no matter which highway but my son wanted to hear the continuous beeping once and the car duly obliged but that was enough not to try again.
  4. Coming from 3-spoke Polo, the 2-spoke steering took some time to adjust. It is slightly lighter to my liking but confidence-inspiring.
  5. The steering controls need some training but once we understand them, they are easy to operate.
  6. Love the seating posture which has not given me any complaints in 3 months.
  7. Barring the first time, I have been using Shell OR XP95 on Indian Oil. I am yet to experience a change if I use something else.
  8. I feel going for better tires would have been a good decision but I was sure not to spend a penny more.
  9. A couple of times experienced a feeble shrieking sound while reversing – will wait and watch and decide after that.
  10. Reverse camera works every time, but the lines are not too sharp.
  11. Wireless charging worked 8/10 times.
  12. Finally - I cannot be tired of driving this vehicle.

Happiness is the word I would associate with the experience so far. I am not a knowledgeable person who can pinpoint the technicality and this decision was driven more by the heart than the mind.

Future will tell from an after-sales perspective. With belief in God and fingers crossed, I hope to cover a lot of miles in this lovely vehicle.

Some pics to share and best wishes to all.

Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.

 
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