Skoda Octavia iV Estate long-term test: report 4

The Skoda Octavia Estate has a five-star What Car? rating, but does the plug-in hybrid version continue to impress when you live with it every day?...

Skoda Octavia Estate LT

The car Skoda Octavia Estate 1.4 TSI iV SE L Run by Mark Pearson, used cars editor

Why it’s here To see whether this category winner in our Electric Car Awards can also hit the mark in everyday use

Needs to Prove it’s more than just a practical wagon. It’ll need to handle commuting work and family life with flair, and deliver impressive real-world fuel economy 


Mileage 6060 Price £34,255 Target Price £32,629 Price as tested £37,045 Test economy 83.3mpg Official economy 246.1mpg 


6 June 2022 – A ghost in the machine?

All had been going swimmingly with my Octavia but, alas, I have to report some hiccups in my long-term affair. I started noticing a strange sound emitting from the infotainment screen that sounded to me like a huge electrical plug switch being turned on.

I had assumed it was some part of the infotainment setup and did my best to ignore it, but then my passengers started to look perplexed by the noise, too, fearful someone might be trapped behind the dashboard.

Skoda Octavia Estate LT

Added to that, the SOS emergency call workshop light on the dash started to come on regularly, accompanied by a foreboding yellow warning triangle. When I turned the car off and on again they’d go, albeit only for a short while.

A less concerning issue was the fact that the heated steering wheel came on every time I started the car up. Then, one frosty morning, I came down to the car to find all four windows down. Quite sure that they were all up the night before, I was a somewhat spooked by this. 

All in, I thought it wise to book my Octavia in to see what was wrong. I began to fear that it might be possessed, but Skoda’s technicians told me that, in order to fix the strange noises from the infotainment and the SOS lights, all they would need to do was perform a software update rather than an exorcism. 

Skoda Octavia Estate LT

They also discovered that someone had set the heated wheel to come on automatically, which can be done by searching through the submenus, and this had now been switched off. And they said that the problem with the windows could have come about because I’d inadvertently pressed the key fob twice in quick succession, quite possibly even while actually inside my house, which can activate this window-dropping. 

When the car came back to me, I’m pleased to report all was well, meaning I could once again enjoy life with the Octavia instead of worrying that someone was trying to contact me from the afterlife. 

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