OUR first ever view of the new ŠKODA Kamiq was from the side and if first impressions count, we liked it straight off the bat. It presented a clean, minimal design. Sitting behind the wheel feels similarly uncluttered, with just the right amount of gauges and switches.
It helps that the virtual dash was set to its most minimal layout. It’s a sort of odd experience when a car is designed this way. So much so, that the hand brake lever seemed out of place in this cabin.
Our test car was finished in Candy White, with silver roof rails, privacy glass and 18-inch ‘Crater’ alloy wheels helping to relieve the absolute whiteness of the colour. Sweeping lines on the lower door panels draw the eye down the flank of the car too.
At the front, the LED lamps and lower grille flow smoothly into the panel corners. The rear end is more angular, and yet still pleasing. Inside the car, soft red LED ambient lighting illuminates after opening the door to add to the unique feel of the car.
The large 10.25-inch central instrument cluster with virtual cockpit has several display choices, including the stripped back minimalist version we started with. You can even make it look like a conventional analogue dash if you please.
The 8-inch digital central multimedia screen comes with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. A wireless phone charging pad is located at the front of the centre console. Standard dual climate control is here too, and always welcome.
The stitched leather, flat bottomed steering wheel felt as good as it looked. The usual switches are at hand too, including the view switch for the dash display and the wheel is reach and height adjustable.
Storage is well catered for, with multiple cup holders, door bottle holders front and rear, and even an overhead sunglasses holder. A lined small oddments pocket on the right lower dash keeps knickknacks close to the drivers reach.
A cubby box is located beneath the padded console lid as well.
The Kamiq is powered by a 1.0-litre turbocharged three cylinder engine which puts out 85kW. Power is sent to the front wheels by a seven speed DSG transmission. Claimed urban fuel economy of 5.8-litres/100km. The car requires 95 RON premium unleaded fuel.
It starts easily off the line or accelerating in higher limited speed zones, with seamless gear shifting at any time. Engine off (stop/start) technology worked painlessly throughout the traffic conditions we encountered.
Offering a 5-star ANCAP safety rating, the 2021 ŠKODA Kamiq 85TSI has a decent features list and plenty of driver assist technology too, including keyless entry and start or KESSY in Skoda-speak, electric tailgate operation and 400-litres of cargo space.
An assortment of nets and hooks help make good use of that space. Dual USB-C ports front and rear are available, but you’ll need the right cable to make use of it to charge your device. The standard wireless phone charging pad is useful and convenient.
A nice touch was the concealed driver’s door umbrella, which was front of mind during our wet test weather. The Kamiq has a colour palette of Candy White (as tested), Black Magic Pearl, Brilliant Silver Metallic, and Moon White Metallic.
It’s also available in Quartz Grey Metallic, Race Blue Metallic and Velvet Red Premium. Standard interior trim is an attractive two tone grey fabric with contrasting stitching. Leather/Suede-like seating material is available in an option pack.
The Kamiq is covered by a 5-year unlimited kilometre warranty with one year roadside assistance. Servicing the car at an authorised dealer will renew the roadside assist cover up to a maximum of five years.
The 2021 ŠKODA Kamiq 85TSI is fitted with seven airbags, and counts front assist with city emergency braking, and active cruise control with lane assist among its safety features.
The reversing camera and parking sensors combine for the rear traffic alert system to counter reduced visibility situations when backing out. Rear seat outer ISOFIX child seat mounts are standard equipment with three anchor points behind the seat, as required.
Our test vehicle was priced at $29,990 drive away and is definitely worth considering. It is overall a well-equipped vehicle for those shopping for a small SUV around this price point.
Our test vehicle was supplied by ŠKODA Australia. To find out more about the 2021 ŠKODA Kamiq 85TSI, contact your local ŠKODA dealer.