The Rapid is a family-sized tailgate that occupies a curious middle ground between the likes of the Polo and Fiesta on one side and the Golf and Focus on the additional. It's narrower by distant than a Focus, but also much longer, the advantage of which is a cabin that, whereas not very broad, has lots of leg and head-room for tall traveler in both front and rear, and a enormous 550-litre boot that makes the trunks of even cars like a Mondeo or Passat look starving.
So, it pushes all the sensible buttons and it's not short of complexity either. The engine in our test car was the cutting-edge VW Group 1.6 TDI diesel, and with 105bhp and 250Nm of torque, it's mutually swift and inexpensive.
Skoda claims 4.4-litres per 100km fuel utilization (64mpg) and if we didn't rather manage that, we effortlessly broke the 50mpg barrier. 114g/km Co2 emissions is a touch high though, particularly when you consider that VW Golf with fundamentally the same engine gets closer to 100g/km, and that means your annual tax bill will be €200.
Inside, Skoda has made immense efforts to make the cabin look and feel as complicated as its bigger brothers, while still estimate less. It's a neat trick, and Skoda almost pulls it off. The dials are obvious and look like luxurious watch faces. The steering wheel feels enjoyable to hold and the driving position is both contented and well sited.
But you'll notice that there's no switches in the front to control the rear windows, the clutch handles in the roof clang back into position lacking a nice, soft motion and the plastics on the doors and dash-top, while still of good dominance, don't have that nice touchy-softy-squishy feeling.
Because of all that, the Rapid feels a separate degree less complicated than its Skoda cousins. Now, that's fine in the sense that it's also greatly cheaper. Prices start at just €16,515 (for the 1.2 MPI petrol; an engine best evade if you want to (a) accelerate or (b) save fuel) and the pick of the range, the 1.2 TSI turbo petrol in Ambition spec, is just €19,550, with almost matching Co2 production to the diesel. All well and good, and those prices include standard electronic stability control – a important benefit.