Skoda Enyaq long-term test: report 1

Is it possible to live with an electric car even if you can't charge it at home? We're finding out with the help of the Skoda Enyaq electric SUV...

Skoda Enyaq front

The car Skoda Enyaq iV 60 Loft Nav Run by Darren Moss, deputy editor

Why it’s here To show that it’s possible to use an electric car as your sole vehicle, even if you can’t charge it at home

Needs to Have enough range to not need charging every day, be comfortable for longer trips, and function as a mobile office when needed

Mileage 325 List price £34,510 Target Price £34,510 Price as tested £40,005 Test range 220 miles Official Range 256 miles Options Convenience Package Plus £1240,  Light and View Package Basic £1115, Assisted Drive Package Plus £915, Metallic paint £595, Parking Package Basic £505, 100kW charging £440, Climate Package Basic £400, Drive Package Basic £285

24 October 2021 – Electric dreams

The very first car I drove was an electric vehicle. It was built by my father in his garage, was powered by an old car battery and the motor from a set of wipers, and had a range of just 500 metres before it ran out of juice.

It’s safe to say that the gap between Dad's creation and the Skoda Enyaq electric SUV that's on my drive now is pretty darn big, not least because the latter can go 825 times farther between charges.

Skoda Enyaq charging

I’ve gone for the lesser of the two battery options, but my '60' model can still manage up to 256 miles before it needs to be plugged in, according to official figures. So far I've achieved around 220 miles in my real-world testing. That (very) easily allows me to cover most journeys that I typically do without suffering range anxiety, and is farther than the Hyundai Ioniq Electric that I ran previously could manage.

There's an '80' Enyaq, with a larger battery that ups the official range to 327 miles. However, that version is quite a bit more expensive.

Saving a bundle to begin with means I haven’t felt at all bad about splurging on a few options, and my car is fit to bursting with (hopefully useful) kit. That ranges from the adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assistance you get with the Assisted Driving Package Plus (yours for £915) to the Arctic Silver metallic paint (£595) that helps me to spot my car in any supermarket car park.

It’s not as if the Enyaq was lacking in kit before I ticked those options, either, because standard equipment includes dual-zone climate control, cruise control and 19in alloy wheels, which I’ve swapped for 20in units at no extra charge.

Skoda Enyaq charging

It’s early days, of course, but I’m enjoying how easy the car has been to get along with so far. I love the way my phone automatically connects to wireless Apple CarPlay, for example. It means that music I've been listening to on headphones starts playing through the Enyaq's speakers when I get in, then switches back when I get out – and it happens with all the buttery smoothness of, well, butter.

Another neat feature is that the charging cables can be conveniently stored in a cubby underneath the main boot, meaning they’re out of the way and don’t get tangled up in my weekly shop.

Speaking of the boot, it’s massive. It’s bigger than most rivals’ and also bigger than the one in the Volkswagen ID.4 (which has the same underpinnings). Certainly, I don’t foresee the luggage I’ll need for weekend trips posing a problem.

What might is keeping my Enyaq’s battery topped up. You see, I don’t have access to a home charging point because I live in a first-floor flat and suspect my downstairs neighbour might complain if I dangled an extension cable across her front window.

Skoda Enyaq interior

Fortunately, there’s a 50kW BP Pulse fast charger less than half a mile from my front door. My plan is to top up there whenever I need to, and pop into a nearby park for a walk while my car replenishes its batteries. So far, it’s worked well, but if all else fails I also have a three-pin plug cable and am not averse to knocking on front doors.

As the world (hopefully) opens up around us, I’ll be going farther afield in my electric Skoda than I have in any car in the past 18 months. That's going to test the limits both of its range and of the UK’s fast-growing but sometimes unreliable public charging network.

If all goes well, I can see this being a permanent switch to electric power. If not, remember to take pity on anyone who comes knocking on your door asking to plug in their car.

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