Our cars: Skoda Octavia 2.0 TDI - December

Article 10 of 11 See all
  • The Octavia's numberplate is coming away from the metal, leaving it to rattle when the tailgate is closed

    The Octavia's numberplate is coming away from the metal, leaving it to rattle when the tailgate is closed

  • We still haven't found anyone tall enough to feel cramped in the rear seats

    We still haven't found anyone tall enough to feel cramped in the rear seats

  • Octavia's driving position is comfortable, and its steering, pedals and gearshift are light and precise

    Octavia's driving position is comfortable, and its steering, pedals and gearshift are light and precise

  • 'His and hers' climate control allows both people up front to keep their cool

    'His and hers' climate control allows both people up front to keep their cool

  • A photographer's gear holds no fear for the Octavia's massive boot

    A photographer's gear holds no fear for the Octavia's massive boot

  • Our Octavia is easy and effortless to drive, which makes it a pleasure to commute in

    Our Octavia is easy and effortless to drive, which makes it a pleasure to commute in

  • There's concern that this boot pull will appeal to chewing dogs

    There's concern that this boot pull will appeal to chewing dogs

  • One Octavia driver is finding it tricky to select first gear from reverse

    One Octavia driver is finding it tricky to select first gear from reverse

  • Whatever the gear, whatever the speed, our 2.0-litre diesel Octavia feels far faster than the 1.6

    Whatever the gear, whatever the speed, our 2.0-litre diesel Octavia feels far faster than the 1.6

  • Octavia was good at family transport on a trip to Goodwood on Saturday...

    Octavia was good at family transport on a trip to Goodwood on Saturday...

  • ...then good at transporting unwanted family stuff on the Sunday

    ...then good at transporting unwanted family stuff on the Sunday

  • Octavia was impressively economical on holiday to Belgium, if not outstanding as a taxi

    Octavia was impressively economical on holiday to Belgium, if not outstanding as a taxi

  • Huge Octavia was hugely useful as cycling holiday transport, as was friend's Vauxhall Zafira

    Huge Octavia was hugely useful as cycling holiday transport, as was friend's Vauxhall Zafira

  • A punchy 2.0-litre diesel engine and a six-speed gearbox equals excellent economy

    A punchy 2.0-litre diesel engine and a six-speed gearbox equals excellent economy

  • Amundsen sat-nav system is good value at £550; it's simple to use and has clear graphics

    Amundsen sat-nav system is good value at £550; it's simple to use and has clear graphics

  • This 4x4 Octavia rides better than our front-wheel-drive model, but it's still not quite supple enough

    This 4x4 Octavia rides better than our front-wheel-drive model, but it's still not quite supple enough

  • The oil temperature display is invaluable – or at least we think it is

    The oil temperature display is invaluable – or at least we think it is

  • Unlike those in some modern cars, the Octavia's glovebox is usefully large

    Unlike those in some modern cars, the Octavia's glovebox is usefully large

  • The Octavia's rattle has finally been fixed by Marlborough Skoda, Isleworth...

    The Octavia's rattle has finally been fixed by Marlborough Skoda, Isleworth...

  • ...even if the door panel wasn't to blame, as originally thought

    ...even if the door panel wasn't to blame, as originally thought

  • The Octavia is superb bike transport...

    The Octavia is superb bike transport...

  • ...not least because my bike fits in whole

    ...not least because my bike fits in whole

  • The ride is fidgety and picks up on too many bumps, but it's far from unacceptable

    The ride is fidgety and picks up on too many bumps, but it's far from unacceptable

  • Our 2.0-litre diesel Octavia is great at making motorway miles melt away

    Our 2.0-litre diesel Octavia is great at making motorway miles melt away

  • Standard touch-screen system reacts even before you've touched the screen – clever

    Standard touch-screen system reacts even before you've touched the screen – clever

  • Driving Mode Selection button doesn't make much difference to how the car feels, so is hardly used

    Driving Mode Selection button doesn't make much difference to how the car feels, so is hardly used

  • We wish we'd spent £150 for audio controls on the steering wheel

    We wish we'd spent £150 for audio controls on the steering wheel

  • Readout is probably optimistic, but still better than Ed managed in a 1.6 TDI version

    Readout is probably optimistic, but still better than Ed managed in a 1.6 TDI version

  • Bag hooks are big, sturdy and useful – a prime example of our Skoda being 'simply clever'

    Bag hooks are big, sturdy and useful – a prime example of our Skoda being 'simply clever'

  • The wrong door panel was delivered, so the original (rattling) one is still in place

    The wrong door panel was delivered, so the original (rattling) one is still in place

  • Open wide: Octavia's boot is so big, we had to photograph it from far away

    Open wide: Octavia's boot is so big, we had to photograph it from far away

  • New passenger door panel is needed to fix the rattle; it's been ordered, so all should be quiet soon

    New passenger door panel is needed to fix the rattle; it's been ordered, so all should be quiet soon

  • Octavia's underfloor boot storage space is handy, if rarely used

    Octavia's underfloor boot storage space is handy, if rarely used

  • The Octavia's £495 Race Blue metallic paint hides the winter dirt well

    The Octavia's £495 Race Blue metallic paint hides the winter dirt well

  • Octavia did us proud over the Christmas break; Dartmoor views weren't bad, either

    Octavia did us proud over the Christmas break; Dartmoor views weren't bad, either

  • Friendly nudge to not leave your phone on display

    Friendly nudge to not leave your phone on display

  • Cavernous boot space is a stretch to get to the back of

    Cavernous boot space is a stretch to get to the back of

  • The Octavia's quality and 'honesty' impressed colleague Stephen Hopkins

    The Octavia's quality and 'honesty' impressed colleague Stephen Hopkins

  • Octavia was fine transport for weekend trip to the Devon countryside

    Octavia was fine transport for weekend trip to the Devon countryside

  • A bit of tyre pressure tweakery has improved the ride

    A bit of tyre pressure tweakery has improved the ride

  • Maximum seat heat should be used only in extreme winter conditions

    Maximum seat heat should be used only in extreme winter conditions

  • The Octavia getting the thumbs up from my family

    The Octavia getting the thumbs up from my family

  • Our Octavia (on the left) has replaced our Rapid

    Our Octavia (on the left) has replaced our Rapid

  • The Octavia offers loads of space for a very reasonable price

    The Octavia offers loads of space for a very reasonable price

  • Our 2.0-litre diesel model in SE trim is £20,140, before options

    Our 2.0-litre diesel model in SE trim is £20,140, before options

  • Interior looks and feels classy; it's got plenty of equipment, too

    Interior looks and feels classy; it's got plenty of equipment, too

  • Boot is massive – and there's extra storage beneath the floor

    Boot is massive – and there's extra storage beneath the floor

  • The 2.0-litre diesel engine is strong, smooth and pretty quiet

    The 2.0-litre diesel engine is strong, smooth and pretty quiet

  • The ride is a bit unsettled, especially on urban roads

    The ride is a bit unsettled, especially on urban roads

  • Plenty of seat and steering wheel adjustment, so it's easy to get comfortable

    Plenty of seat and steering wheel adjustment, so it's easy to get comfortable

  • Octavia handles neatly and has nicely weighted steering

    Octavia handles neatly and has nicely weighted steering

  • There's loads of space back here, even for the tallest adults

    There's loads of space back here, even for the tallest adults

  • Octavia is generally hushed, apart from road noise on coarse surfaces

    Octavia is generally hushed, apart from road noise on coarse surfaces

  • Apple-specific audio connection is £100, then it's £50 for the lead!

    Apple-specific audio connection is £100, then it's £50 for the lead!

/

Skoda Octavia 2.0 TDI 150 SE

Week ending December 20
Mileage 3536
Miles driven this week 110

Read the full Skoda Octavia review

I had the pleasure of a weekend spent with the Octavia, and in truth there were few surprises. I expected the Skoda to feel solidly put together, I expected strong performance from the 150PS diesel and I expected it to sip fuel over the course of the couple of days I spent with it. All proved to be the case. 

There were surprises too though. I didn’t expect the boot to dwarf that of my regular ride, the Volvo V60 hybrid. In fact the boot is so big that I struggled to reach my laptop bag when it had slid to the back during my ride home from work. In fact, shorter drivers might need a step ladder to access the furthest reaches of the Octavia’s cavernous load space. Certainly if wet knees from leaning against the bumper are to be avoided.

What impressed me however was the very compliant nature of the in-car entertainment system. The touch-screen set-up responds to a light touch, is intuitive and feature packed. What wowed me beyond measure however was the gentle nudge to pick up your phone before leaving the car. Sounds stupid, but as a serial phone forgetter, that little pointer could save me a lot of pat downs, curses and return visits to the cabin to retrieve my handset.

By Nigel Donnelly

Week ending December 13
Mileage 3426
Miles driven this week 388

I swapped my Mazda 6 for the Skoda Octavia earlier this week, to see what the smaller Skoda is like.

First impressions were good. It’s built like no Skoda I’ve ever driven before, and certainly feels different from my granddad’s Skoda Rapid coupe that I used to go on holiday in about 30 years ago.

Interior quality is excellent and the materials feel like they’re strong enough to last the course.

The Octavia seems to do everything with no fuss or bling, which is what you expect from a Skoda. The controls are simple and everything from the sat-nav to the heated seats is easy to use. The seats are comfortable, too.

Yes, the exterior styling looks tame compared with that of my Mazda 6, but that won’t bother the people who will buy this car. After all, they’re buying the Octavia because it’s big and functional – and it certainly does that very well.

By Stephen Hopkins
Stephen.Hopkins@whatcar.com


Week ending December 6
Mileage 3038
Miles driven this week 736

Read the full Skoda Octavia review

My girlfriend and I visited her parents in Devon last weekend, which was the perfect opportunity to put the Octavia’s long-distance comfort to the test.

It did pretty well. Getting out of town didn’t take too long on the Friday evening, and once we’d got onto faster roads, the Octavia effortlessly covered the 180-odd miles to the South West.

Now the tyres are set to the correct pressure for a couple of people and some bags – rather than a full load – the ride is better, too. It’s still not as settled or supple as I’d like, but it’s not uncomfortable or irritating.

Road noise on coarse surfaces apart, the Octavia was also pretty quiet, even when the roads were deserted and we ‘pushed on a bit’.

The Octavia was good at the shorter journeys over the weekend as well. The light controls, good visibility and powerful diesel engine made light work of everything from narrow country lanes to steep hills. The heated seats and heated windscreen were also fantastic when we left a friend’s house late on the (freezing) Saturday night.

We then did the Sunday afternoon journey home with just one quick stop, and got back feeling decently fresh.

Best of all, the Octavia did the trip on a single tank of fuel and managed almost 50mpg.

By Barnaby Jones
Barnaby.Jones@whatcar.com

Our cars: Skoda Octavia 2.0 TDI - November

advertisement

Free car valuations

advertisement