HOME

NEWS

ROAD TESTS

 

 

ABOUT

ADVERTISE

SUBSCRIBE

TOP DRIVE

 

 

 

 





































ROAD RAMBLINGS 
CLICK FOR DETAILS
HEAR CHRIS GOODSELL
TALK MOTORING ON
RADIO & THE WEB
..... more

Road Test

Skoda Octavia RS

by Mark Walker

14th September, 2008

Skoda Octavia RS 
Image copyright: Next Car Pty Ltd 
Click on the image for a larger view

Skoda, a member of the Volkswagen family of companies, returned to Australia in 2007 with the release of the Octavia and Roomster models. Leading the line-up is the Octavia RS.

The Octavia RS is Skoda's sports version of a family car. The sports styling is subtle rather than aggressive. The obvious give away is the bigger 18" alloys. Other features signalling its sporting intentions are the bigger bumpers, the red brake calipers and the dual exhaust tips.

The star attraction in the Octavia RS is the 2.0 litre, 4 cylinder turbo charged engine. Producing 147 kW, it is the same engine that powers the VW Golf GTI. The result is acceleration from 0-100 km/h in 7.3 seconds and a claimed maximum speed of a generous and unnecessary 240 km/h. The car responds well under acceleration and the deep exhaust note helps the sports feel no end.

In Australia, the RS is currently only availablewith a 6 speed manual transmission. It's willing in all gears and the gearbox and clutch are easy to live with around town or in heavy traffic.

Skoda Octavia RS 
Image copyright: Next Car Pty Ltd 
Click on the image for a larger view

Fuel consumption is not bad at 8.1 litres per 100 km. Perhaps more important to the cost of driving is the type of unleaded used, with Skoda recommending 98 RON premium unleaded to gain maximum performance. This unfortunately results in a premium price at the pump.

The green credentials of the Octavia RS are nothing to boast about with CO2 emissions being 193 g/km. That said, they are not unreasonable for a car of this size and performance and are favourable to the emissions of the larger, Australian built products in the market.

The RS is generously equipped and the cabin is spacious and comfortable. The seats are trimmed with part leather, part fabric as standard. The fronts seats are both comfortable and supportive. The space in the rear is decent. Two adults can travel in comfort in the rear seats - but three is a squeeze. The exhaust noise is more intrusive for the rear passengers but is only an issue during long journeys.

Skoda Octavia RS 
Image copyright: Next Car Pty Ltd 
Click on the image for a larger view

The dash and controls are simple and well organised. The RS sets itself apart on the inside with matt chrome trim on the doors, dash and gear lever. Despite the abundance of plastic, the quality of finish seems high. Many interior features are noticeably borrowed from VW products, which is no bad thing. The standard kit includes dual zone climate control air, 6 disc in-dash CD changer and heated front seats with the other common luxuries like cruise control, power windows and power mirrors also standard. A noticeable absence for the driver is audio controls on the wheel. The steering wheel itself is leather wrapped, both height and reach adjustable and comfortable to grip.

For driver convenience, the Octavia RS comes standard with rear park assist (front sensors are on the option list). The tunnel light feature is also standard, which if used will turn on the headlights when the light drops below a certain level. The standard rain sensing wipers are a good feature and very common these days but the sensors on the Octavia were a bit sensitive at times - meaning they swept a completely dry (but dirty) windscreen and this only served to make the screen dirtier. The wipers on the test car were also a tad noisy at the low turn in the cycle which was a little annoying. I would hope this issue could be rectified with minor adjustment or new wiper rubbers.

Skoda Octavia RS 
Image copyright: Next Car Pty Ltd 
Click on the image for a larger view

A strength of the Octavia RS is it's practicality. The wagon has a massive 1,420 litres of storage capacity with the rear seats down. The rear seats are split for folding 1/3 and 2/3. It copes very well with the seats up also. In addition to the cargo net, there are plenty of hooks to secure your shopping bags.

The Octavia RS is well equipped with safety features also. Six airbags are fitted as standard equipment. This includes driver and passenger airbags, front side airbags and two curtain airbags. The RS also has anti-lock braking and traction control which are integrated into the Electronic Stabilisation Programme (ESP). The ESP will act to control the braking and/or engine output should the vehicle lose control.

Skoda Octavia RS 
Image copyright: Next Car Pty Ltd 
Click on the image for a larger view

Automatic door locks activate when the vehicle sets off and will not unlock automatically until the engine is turned off. They can be unlocked at the press of a button located on the centre console or by two movements of the interior door handles.

The Octavia RS is priced keenly. The sedan is $37,490 plus o- road costs. The wagon is $39,490 plus on-roads. The test vehicle was fitted with metallic paint($630) and an electric glass sunroof ($1,730). Skoda are offering new vehicle warranties for 3 years with no restriction on kilometres driven, including roadside assistance. The dealer network is still small but Skoda Australia are planning to expand the current network. This will no doubt be possible on the back of the success of this model, plus other models set to be released locally in the near future.

Other Skoda content: here.

Next Car Pty Ltd
ABN 47106248033

Next Car Pty Ltd

Copyright 2008.
All rights reserved.