30/07/2021

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The car that cares

2021 Skoda Octavia review, test drive

The Octavia is a motor vehicle that defies convention. In spite of the truth that it has a hatch at the rear, it isn’t a normal hatchback much from it. It isn’t a sedan possibly, even though in profile you’d swear it was. Then there’s the fastback rear, the significant rear overhang and the estate-like 600-litre boot, but it isn’t a fastback or an estate possibly. What it is, is one of a kind, and all the far better for it.

In excess of the several years, the Octavia has preserved these one of a kind properties, together with other model-defining features like the tricky make, the high-high quality really feel, the pleasurable-to-push character and the ‘value luxury’ positioning. In truth, the Octavia has made this sort of a sturdy impression about the several years, it’s the motor vehicle that arrives to intellect very first when you say the term Skoda.

While this fourth-era Octavia arrives at a time when the government sedan phase has all but collapsed, there’s tiny doubt that this motor vehicle, undoubtedly in this stunning shade of blue, will have all eyeballs on it. The focal point is the new grille, now put decreased down, and the distinctive pair of LED headlights with their twin L-shaped DRL pattern, all of which are mounted flush with the bodywork now. As on its significant sister, the Fantastic, skinning on the fenders, doorways and flanks is tight, with lots of desirable creases and cuts, and this tends to make the new Octavia looks lithe and muscular.

LED DRL pattern is a refined backlink to quad-headlamp predecessor.

It is about the exact same dimensions as the earlier motor vehicle, but the tucked-in midsection and coupé-like roof make it seem lengthier than it is, and the sturdy belt-line can help give it a additional confident stance. All-around the rear, the BMW-like upside-down L-shaped tail-lights insert to the over-all attractiveness too. Nevertheless, some will find the blackened wheels, with their webbed detailing, a little bit about the major.

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L&K trim’s wheels divide belief. Elevated trip top apparent at wheels.

The new Octavia is also slipperier, with a drag coefficient of just .24. But simply because it has been elevated for Indian streets, there’s lots of daylight concerning the wheels and wheel arches. And this, aside from spoiling the stance, is also very likely to influence drag. Even now, all in all, there’s an desirable richness to the design and that really does make it stand out.

Czech Out The Cabin

The contemporary new seem carries on within too, the place you are greeted by a quite modern day cabin. High quality amounts have also taken a significant phase ahead and the make is harder than on the earlier motor vehicle. You can really feel it all about – on the dash, centre console, doorpads and even the seats. The doorways shut with a sound thunk and there’s a fulfilling heft to how matters functionality, and this feels just wonderful.

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Horizontal middle ingredient on dash created to echo condition of front grille.

The cabin is now additional sculpted and the 3-dimensional design of the interiors provides to the elevated feeling of situation. Skoda has efficiently managed to give the insides a abundant really feel. There are both, brushed metallic and chrome inserts that brighten up the cabin, Alcantara has been utilized on major of the dash, the doorway pockets are felt lined and the ‘floating’, two-spoke steering wheel, with its metallic knurled controllers is wonderfully designed. Even the stubby gear selector that arrives in put of a conventional gear lever is very well crafted. Curiously, the Octavia uses shift-by-wire tech, which suggests interaction concerning the selector and gearbox is via digital signals and not mechanical linkages.

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Stubby gear selector sits in put of conventional gear lever.

The hottest Octavia is very well equipped too. Together with the ten-inch touchscreen, which is crisp and responds very well to the lightest faucet, there are bodily shortcut buttons for the ESC, fatigue notify system, weather handle and park assist. The weather handle shortcut, even so, does not do the job very well, as it just prospects you back again to the touchscreen, and there’s no tricky button for the supporter speed possibly. This, of program, is rather fiddly, specially on the move. What is also a strike and miss is the quantity handle panel down below the touchscreen. Swiping left/correct increases/decreases the quantity, but it’s not as slick as you’d like it to be. A rotary quantity controller would have done the position just great.

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ten-inch touchscreen is great to use. Added bodily shortcut buttons would assistance however.

You also get a totally digital instrument panel with configurable modes. The layouts are user welcoming and what is wonderful is that the monitor can also relay navigation directions from Android Auto or Apple CarPlay, so motorists will not want to seem absent to the most important touchscreen.

Other package includes brilliantly done ambient lights that bathes the cabin in delicate colours of your selection, there’s a effective and crisp 600W Canton seem system with a subwoofer, LED reading lights that have proximity sensors, retractable solar shades on the rear home windows, and wireless Apple CarPlay (it requires an application) and Android Auto. You get four USB-C slots, two up front and two at the rear, and the parking assist ably steers the Octy into a detected spot. Ventilated seats aren’t element of the package, however a even bigger miss for opportunity buyers is a sunroof the hottest Octavia isn’t engineered for just one.

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Shapely front seats supply wonderful support. Lumbar change aids comfort.

What occupants will recognize, even so, are the significant, comfortable leather-based-Alcantara front seats. They are electrically adjustable, wide enough to keep even significant occupants comfortable, provide up superb back again and thigh support, and even characteristic lumbar support adjustment and a memory functionality. They are, even so, completed in a gentle colour and this may well make them tricky to keep clear.

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Even significant-designed 6 footers will be comfy at the back again. Space is great and the seat is very well bolstered.

Comfort at the rear is superb too, and the new Octavia is now even far better suited to remaining utilized as a chauffeur-driven motor vehicle. For just one, there’s lots of space in the rear – a little bit additional than in the before motor vehicle – there’s great thigh support, the backrest is now set at a additional comfortable angle, and the seats are far better contoured for additional lateral support. There is even a respectable volume of space for the third passenger, but they will have to straddle the vast central tunnel four-wheel-push variations sold overseas have a propellor shaft in there. The truth that there’s no sunroof and a darkish headliner, even so, indicate it isn’t as vibrant or ethereal listed here as it could have been.

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Real to tradition, the boot is cavernous Luggage ability is 600 litres.

There is lots of place for odds and finishes, like a sunglass holder, a usable cooled glovebox, significant bottle holders in the doorways, and two cupholders in close proximity to the gear selector that have rubberised dimples on the base. You really will not be limited on space on outstation journeys or airport operates possibly. The new Octavia will get a 600-litre boot with lots of clever features packed in to make your existence easier. The boot can be accessed by way of the rear armrest, the rear seats can be folded down electrically, you can open the hatch by ‘kicking’ under the boot if you have the important in your pocket (Skoda phone calls it virtual pedal), and a driven procedure is integrated too. In legitimate Skoda fashion, there are, as ever, lots of wise hooks and fasteners to protected your luggage too, and however it has a spare tyre, it’s only a space saver.

Traveling Arrow

The previous-gen Octavia bowed out of India in grand design, in entire-blown RS245 avatar. The new Octy features the exact same 2. TSI turbo-petrol motor, albeit in a acquainted 190hp and 320Nm state of tune. For reference, the before Octavia 1.8 TSI made 180hp and 250Nm. A 7-speed twin-clutch gearbox is conventional in good shape and channels electrical power to the front wheels. A lesser 1.five-litre petrol model is a chance and Skoda has verified the new Octy RS will occur to India in owing time, but there will not be any diesels.

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190hp, 2.-litre TSI motor is refined and delivers sturdy general performance.

Fire up the Octavia and it settles into a smooth and quite refined idle. The motor vehicle responds well to a faucet on the throttle, and earlier 2,000rpm there’s a sturdy tug that tends to make general performance really feel effortless. Involving 2,000 and 4,000rpm, the motor is also very smooth and inaudible, producing the new Octavia a quite completed cruiser. Earlier 4,000rpm, electrical power shipping and delivery will get even more robust, and the run to six,000rpm is quite energetic. Driving in this band is especially satisfying when situations allow (a number of additional revs would have additional additional spice), and what can help is the twin-clutch gearbox that is brief to dial up the up coming gear. It’s super brief to respond to tugs at the paddles too. In town, even so, the 7-speed DSG does get tripped up on situation. Sudden adjustments in throttle enter can elicit a a little delayed reaction, however it’s never ever too harsh.

Motorists with a sportier bent will miss push modes, but you do get launch handle. Set your foot down and launch it does, the motor pulling strongly as quickly as you are off the line. 100kph arrives up in 8 seconds flat, with 160 coming up in 18.nine seconds. As the desk tends to make very clear, there’s really quite tiny difference in phrases of general performance concerning Octavias aged and new, and that is reflective of their in close proximity to-equivalent electrical power to fat ratios. The hottest Octy tends to make 10hp additional but also weighs 84kg additional than its predecessor.

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On its elevated suspension, the Octavia also rides very well. The 106mm laden floor clearance determine is worrying, but our fears proved unfounded as the Octy cleared significant speed breakers with relieve. The Skoda also rides by way of significant potholes very easily, with no significant deflection felt within the cabin. Sharp-edged bumps, even so, do catch it out, with a sharp ‘thwack’ read within the cabin on bad surfaces. The trip can be active at situations too, specially on concrete streets, the place there is also a little bit of tyre sounds. Hold to a continual pace on the freeway and you will recognize the Octavia for its sound and settled really feel.

Like the before-gen motor vehicle, this just one too has a steering that is gentle, quick to twirl and exact. This can help make the motor vehicle really feel smaller than it is from at the rear of the wheel. Even nicer is that the steering remains pin-sharp and exact even at greater speeds, and considering that the Octavia’s front conclude has a honest volume of bite and it does not roll too substantially, agility is great. So it’s no surprise that this neutral handler feels safe and sound and composed even in speedy corners. It’s only when you press quite tricky into a corner that the 205/fifty five R17 tyres look out of depth.

Much more, For Much more

Even bigger, far better and additional completed, the new Octavia feels like a additional upmarket and high-class sedan. The cabin is very comfortable, high quality amounts have taken a very clear phase ahead and aside from a number of misses, Skoda has equipped the Octavia generously too. Then there’s the sound make, the sturdy motor, the sorted dynamics and that just enormous boot.

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Dear but plush new Octavia is wonderful to push and be driven in.

If there is a hurdle, it would be the selling price. The new Octavia is considerably additional highly-priced, with a beginning selling price of Rs twenty five.99 lakh and heading up to Rs 28.99 lakh (ex-showroom, India) for the totally-loaded L&K and that could make some buyers baulk. But, once you get about the sticker shock and seem intently at the place your income goes, it’s honest to say that with the Octavia’s unimpeachable make high quality, it’s income very well invested.

Also see:

2021 Skoda Octavia online video critique