The first Skoda Octavia came to life back in 1996. That was the first generation, which was also introduced in India – by 2001. Second generation was introduced in 2004. For Europe, the first gen was discontinued to make way for second gen Octavia, but for India, second gen Octavia was launched as Laura, to be sold alongside the first gen Octavia.
Fast forward 15+ years, and we now have the new facelift of third generation Skoda Octavia now on sale in India. This is the most refined and feature-rich Octavia ever. We were in Chandigarh recently to test drive the car, and here is our detailed review.
Built on the latest of VW Group’s MQB (Modularer QuerBaukasten in German) platform, the new Octavia is more aggressive, and sportier as compared to the pre-facelift variant. The front features new grille, quad LED headlamps with LED DRLs and fog lights. Body lines on the bonnet and sides are much sharper and bolder. At the rear, you have revised LED taillamps and bumper.
Dimensions and weight remains more or less same as compared to the pre-facelift variant. Overall dimensions of new Octavia stand at 4670 mm long, 1814 mm wide, 1476 mm tall, wheelbase 2688 mm and ground clearance of 155 mm. Storage capacity on the inside is at 590 liters of space, while when you lower the rear seats, this space is increased to 1580 liters. Depending on the variant, kerb weight ranges from 1260 kgs to 1395 kgs, while gross weight ranges from 1825 kgs to 1915 kgs.
Once you are inside the new Octavia, the first thing you come across, is new dual tone dashboard with an intuitive touchscreen system. Compared to the old Octavia, the interiors feel more inviting, as well as more luxurious. Driver seat gets electric control with memory function. The seats offer utmost comfort, both to the front as well as the rear passengers.
New Octavia also features premium interiors like leather seats, panoramic sunroof, wood design decor, steering mounted controls, color touchscreen, surround sound music system, adaptive frontlight system, auto-braking, auto-parking, auto-unparking, ABS, airbags (front, side and curtain), electronic brake distribution, motor speed regulation, anti slip regulation, electronic stability control, door open indicator, remote foldable keys, engine immobilizer, USB, Bluetooth, iPod connectivity, eight speakers, rear ac vents, climate control, and much more.
All the above comforts on one side and driving the new Octavia on other. This is a driver’s car, there is no doubt in that. Once behind the wheel, you will not take much long to realize that the new Octavia is built to perform. Octavia is a dynamic and powerful car, especially the manual variants. Power delivery in manual is seamless, thanks to 6 speed fully synchronized gearbox. NVH levels are good, you will hardly notice the difference when the petrol motor is running and when it is not.
As far as power delivery in the automatic variants is concerned, the DSG (Direct Shift Gearbox or Direkt-Schalt-Getriebe in German) does the job pretty well. In addition to this, it now gets steering wheel mounted shift paddle. In the 2.0 TDI (A), the transmission is taken care by a six speed DSG with Tiptronic manual gear changing, while in 1.8 TSI (A), transmission is taken care by a seven speed DSG with Tiptronic manual gear changing.
As far as suspension setting is concerned, the new Octavia features McPherson suspension with lower triangular links and torsion stabilizer in the front, but for rear, it has compound link rear axle as standard and a multi-axle suspension setting for the 1.8 TSI variant. This is what makes it a little more comfortable for rear seat passengers, especially when driving through ghat section and bumpy surface.
Octavia was already ne of the best sedans on offer in the country in our books. With this update, Skoda India has improved the Octavia package even further. It is the first time ever that a manufacturer has offered auto parking and auto unparking features in this segment. More feature-rich than rivals, and priced aggressively, we hope that the new Octavia will bring added sales for Skoda in India.
[table id=152 /]
[table id=153 /]