Skoda is going places. So much so that it might need to revise its production targets upwards, even from a stated goal of making 1.8 million cars per year by 2018.

Globally, Skoda has hit a chord with the buying public. Its products mean the same thing everywhere: they’re good value, they’re more spacious than you’d expect and they’re adorned simply inside. It is an image that has resonated in a crisis-ridden world.

The Rapid kicked off a latest production expansion that was followed by the new Octavia range, and a large SUV after that.

But it’s the Rapid that brings some balance to the line-up, sitting as it does in the gap between the Fabia, which we’ll now think of as a conventional supermini, and the Octavia, which has hitherto been small for a Ford Mondeo-segment car, or large for a Focus-sized one.

Skoda's Rapid – a straightforward, spacious, good value C-segment competitor – will occupy the ‘small family’ ground and push the Octavia up into fleet territory.

To that end, it’s average-sized, of average weight and wears the kind of keen price sticker you’d expect to find on a car that is aimed mainly at private buyers.

Top 5 Family hatches

  • More than 29 million Golfs have been sold since 1974

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    1
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    Ford Focus

    2
  • Seat Leon SC
    Seat says that much of the inspiration for the SC comes from its IBE concept

    Seat Leon SC

    3
  • Mazda 3
    The SkyActiv platform used in the 3 features more high and ultra-high-strength steel, offering greater strength and less weight

    Mazda 3

    4
  • Peugeot 308
    The 308 marks the first time a carry-over name has been applied to an all-new Peugeot

    Peugeot 308

    5

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