Skoda Octavia Estate review

Category: Estate car

On a space per pound ratio, the Octavia Estate is one of the best estate cars available

Red Skoda Octavia Estate front cornering
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate front cornering
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate rear cornering
  • Skoda Octavia Estate during test drive
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate boot open
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior driver display
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate right driving
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate front left driving
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate front right driving
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate rear cornering
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate front left static
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate right static boot open
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate rear left static
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate rear lights detail
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior dashboard
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior steering wheel detail
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior infotainment
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior aircon controls
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior front seats
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior detail
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate front cornering
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate rear cornering
  • Skoda Octavia Estate during test drive
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate boot open
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior driver display
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate right driving
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate front left driving
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate front right driving
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate rear cornering
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate front left static
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate right static boot open
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate rear left static
  • Red Skoda Octavia Estate rear lights detail
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior dashboard
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior steering wheel detail
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior infotainment
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior aircon controls
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior front seats
  • Skoda Octavia Estate interior detail
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What Car? says...

Skoda's bargain-basement days are ancient history, and the Czech firm now has an enviable reputation for offering spacious, sensible, good-value cars. This Skoda Octavia Estate for example.

Like the Skoda Octavia hatchback – a mainstay of the brand’s line-up – the Octavia Estate has the underpinnings of the VW Golf but stretches the distance between the front and rear wheels to increase passenger space, and adds extra metal to the rump to make more room for luggage.

Octavia Estate buyers have a range of efficient petrol and diesel engines to choose from and, if they want to combine practicality with performance, there’s even a hotter vRS version of the estate. 

Of course, competition for the best estate car title is fierce, so how does the Skoda Octavia Estate stack up against the sweet handling Ford Focus Estate, the very practical Toyota Corolla Touring Sports and the versatile Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer? Read on to find out...


The Skoda Octavia Estate offers a vast boot considering its size, and generous space for occupants, but it's far more than just a big box on wheels. The relatively plush interior, generally cosseting ride and frugal engines make it a fantastic car for covering big distances in, especially if you stick to our favourite 1.5 TSI 150 engine and SE Technology trim.

  • Supple ride most of the time
  • Huge boot
  • Well priced next to rivals
  • Rivals are more fun to drive
  • A bit floaty over big undulations
  • Heating controls are in the touchscreen
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Performance & drive

What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is

Engine, 0-60mph and gearbox

If you're a company car driver or do a bit of towing, one of the Skoda Octavia Estate’s diesel engines will be the one for you.

The 114bhp 2.0 TDI 116 offers decent performance, but the 148bhp 2.0 TDI 150 is the really impressive performer. It can get you from 0-62mph in a very respectable 8.7 seconds, and pulls like a train from low revs. It certainly feels punchier than the 2.0-litre hybrid Toyota Corolla Touring Sports – even though that has more power.

Still, as good as the diesel is, our pick of the range is the excellent 148bhp 1.5 TSI 150 petrol. You need to rev it harder at times, but when you do it's even brisker (0-62mph takes just 8.5 seconds) and it costs a whole lot less. Even the 108bhp 1.0 TSI 110 and mild-hybrid 1.0 TSI e-Tec 110 feel peppy enough for extended motorway driving, but could feel a little strained carrying heavy loads regularly.

Those after more performance will want the top-spec 2.0 TSI 245 petrol engine, because it gives you 242bhp to play with and cuts the 0-62mph sprint time to 6.7sec. It’s reserved for the vRS version, though, so you can read more in our dedicated Skoda Octavia vRS review.

Suspension and ride comfort

The Octavia Estate’s ride is, on the whole, excellent. It’s noticeably softer than a lot of its rivals, including the Ford Focus Estate and its wafty bent also makes it particularly adept for relaxed jaunts on motorways and A-roads. It’s also fine around town when you encounter rounded-off lumps in the road, such as speed bumps.

Skoda Octavia image
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So why doesn’t it get five stars here, then? Well, while it’s great 90% of the time, it can get surprisingly thumpy over sharper potholes and then, just occasionally, the bounciness over a series of bigger undulations encountered at speed can be slightly alarming.

Adaptive dampers (DCC) are an option if you go for SE L trim or above and these can be stiffened to dial out that excessive float, but taking the additional cost into consideration we’d stick with the standard set-up.

The main thing is to avoid big alloy wheels, which won’t do the ride any favours at all.

Red Skoda Octavia Estate rear cornering


Despite the softness of its suspension, the Octavia Estate is perfectly capable when it comes to corners. In particular, its steering is precise and has plenty of reassuring weight, providing you with a good sense of connection to the road through the front tyres.

The Octavia also grips quite resolutely through bends and it's never anything less than stable and secure if you're driving normally. That said, for enthusiastic drivers, the Ford Focus Estate and the Toyota Corolla Touring Sports lean less and feel considerably more agile.

Noise and vibration

All the petrol engines are fairly smooth and quiet. That’s especially true of the 1.5 TSI 150, but even the three-cylinder 1.0 TSI 110 isn’t overly thrummy compared with the three-cylinder engines in the competition. As you might expect, the diesels are noisier and generate more vibrations, but even they aren’t intrusive.

Road noise is a mild bugbear and isn’t as well isolated as it is in the Ford Focus Estate but wind noise is pretty muted at 70mph. The Octavia is prone to suspension noise, though – you can hear it working away over really broken surfaces.

The manual gearbox is light and the automatic gearbox changes smoothly but is more abrupt at parking speeds.

Automatic Octavias can "coast" out of gear to save fuel, before re-engaging drive smoothly when you put your foot down again. The stop-start system on non-hybrid versions can be frustrating in traffic, cutting the engine a bit too soon and taking too long to fire it back up again.

Driving overview 

Strengths Comfortable ride; strong and refined engines; reassuring handling

Weaknesses Rivals are more fun to drive; can be slightly bouncy over undulations


The interior layout, fit and finish

Driving position and dashboard

The Skoda Octavia Estate gives you plenty of reach and rake adjustment for the steering wheel and a good range of movement for the seat, including adjustable lumbar support, so finding an ideal driving position is easy.

For extra comfort, a powered driver’s seat with memory function is available as an option with SE L trim, but we think the normal seats are comfortable enough, so it’s not really worth the extra money.

A digital instrument display, called the Virtual Cockpit, is standard on all trims except SE (on which it’s optional). It’s an impressive display, which is easy to read and has plenty of layout and content options – in fact, it’s so impressive that it makes the SE L’s optional head-up display an unnecessary expense. 

Unfortunately, the air-con controls are located within the central touchscreen. The temperature icons are always on display at the bottom, but the other climate functions are hidden away within the menus. It would be much simpler and less distracting to have physical controls, which you get in the Toyota Corolla Touring Sports.

Visibility, parking sensors and cameras

The Octavia Estate’s large side windows and relatively thin pillars front and rear give you great all-round visibility. It makes this relatively big estate car one of the easiest to manoeuvre in tighter spots. 

To help relieve any residual parking worries, entry-level SE trim comes with rear parking sensors, while SE Technology and SE L get front parking sensors too. A rear-view camera is on the options list, as is a system called Park Assist that will steer the car into a parking space for you.

At night, the default bright LED headlights help you pick your way. They can be upgraded at a cost to adaptive matrix LED headlights that allow you to use the main beam more often without blinding other drivers.

Skoda Octavia Estate during test drive

Sat nav and infotainment

Helpfully, Skoda has positioned the 10.0in infotainment touchscreen high on the dashboard so you don’t have to take your eyes far from the road to see it. All versions come with Bluetooth, wired Android Auto and wireless Apple CarPlay smartphone mirroring, as well as DAB radio. Any trim above the entry-level SE adds built-in sat-nav to that list.

The large icons are relatively easy to hit, the graphics look sharp and sophisticated, and the screen is far more responsive than the one in the Corolla Touring Sports.

We’d still prefer the Octavia to have helpful physical shortcuts like the Corolla though, instead of its distracting touch-sensitive controls. Also, the Skoda software is prone to crashing occasionally and the menus for some of the features are befuddling.

SE Technology trim gives you two USB-C ports, while top trims have up to five: two in a handy cubby in front of the gearlever, another two for rear-seat passengers and another up by the rear-view mirror. If you’re wondering why you’d want one there, it’s to power a dashcam.

Wireless phone charging and an upgraded stereo (as standard you get eight speakers) are available as options.


The range of plush, squidgy plastics on the top and front of the dashboard, and above the armrests on the doors, make the Octavia feel sufficiently classy. It’s nicer than the Corolla Sport Tourer inside, and less fussy than the eclectic mixture of textures in the Vauxhall Astra Sport Tourer.

SE L trim gets a faux-suede wrapping on part of its dashboard that helps to lift the ambience further, and while there are some harder plastics lower down, they are pleasingly textured. It all feels solidly screwed together too.

The stalks behind the steering wheel feel pleasant to use, as do the steering wheel buttons. The metal-effect scroll wheels on the spokes and the change paddles behind the steering wheel on automatic models feel a little flimsy, as do some of the other buttons, which twang when you press them.

All in all, though, the Octavia has one of the better-grade interiors in the class and it’s miles ahead of the one in the Ford Focus Estate.

Interior overview 

Strengths Quality interior; comfortable driving position; great visibility

Weaknesses Distracting touch-sensitive controls; infotainment can be buggy

Passenger & boot space

How it copes with people and clutter

Front space

Being considered spacious among estate cars isn’t easy for the Skoda Octavia Estate because the class includes behemoths like the BMW 3 Series Touring and the Skoda Superb Estate.

Even so, the Octavia holds its own, with plenty of space up front. A very tall driver will be able to get comfortable, even with a headroom-robbing panoramic glass roof fitted.

Storage is better than in many rivals, too. The door pockets are a good size, with provision for a 1.5-litre bottle, and the air-con-cooled glovebox is big enough to keep your entire meal deal fresh.

There’s another large covered storage space beneath the front armrest that is perfect for hiding electronic devices and other valuables, and that too is cooled in case you need to keep yet more food stashed and fresh.

Behind the gearlever are two fixed cupholders, which will keep your coffee-to-go secure and, ingeniously, have been designed to grip a drinks bottle so tightly that you can twist its cap off with one hand while driving.

In front of the gear selector is a handy tray that’s big enough for a large mobile phone to sit next to your house keys and wallet or purse.

Rear space

There’s a good amount of head and leg room in the rear for a car of the Octavia’s size, with space for a six-footer even when the front seats are slid back. Just bear in mind that the Ford Focus Estate shades it for leg room, while the Toyota Corolla Touring Sports has a bit more head and leg room.

If you're the middle-seat passenger, you have to place your feet either side of the Octavia's raised central tunnel, but if you're one of the two outer passengers, there's loads of foot room under the front seats. If you plan to have someone sitting in the middle seat often, it’s worth considering that the Corolla has a much smaller central tunnel.

A central armrest with two cupholders is standard on all models and the rear door pockets are a decent size. A map pocket on the back of each front seat, along with a smaller smartphone pocket, is also standard, along with sizeable rear door bins.

Red Skoda Octavia Estate boot open

Seat folding and flexibility

In terms of flexibility, the Skoda Octavia Estate is pretty conventional, although the 60/40 split seats are folded by a couple of levers in the boot, so you don’t have to walk around to the passenger compartment. 

Even so, the rear seats in the Peugeot 308 SW are slightly more versatile, thanks to the fact that they split in a 40/20/40 configuration, making it easier to put long items in the boot and into the interior.

The front passenger seat has plenty of adjustment, including for height and lumbar support. You can't get a powered option, though, and it doesn't fold flat to increase the storage space.

Boot space

Boot size is a major highlight. The Octavia Estate’s 640-litre boot is huge compared with similar-sized rivals, and even manages to beat that of the Mercedes E-Class Estate (with the rear seats up).

We managed to fit nine carry-on suitcases under the Octavia’s parcel shelf, two shy of the larger Skoda Superb Estate. The Octavia's load area is longer and taller than in most comparably priced estates, and it’s a practical squared-off shape.

When the back seats are folded down, the space is truly vast, although the seats don’t lie completely flat, leaving an awkward step in the extended load area, unless you opt for the variable-height boot floor (optional on all but SE L trim). We’d definitely recommend adding it. 

As standard, you get a 12V socket, bag hooks and a couple of compartments at the side to stop your boot clutter sliding around.

Practicality overview 

Strengths Huge boot; lots of space in the front; endless interior storage

Weaknesses Slightly less rear space than rivals

Buying & owning

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

Costs, insurance groups, MPG and CO2

When it comes to value for money, the Skoda Octavia Estate is at the sharp end, even undercutting the Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer despite being a better car.

Meanwhile, it’ll cost slightly more than the Seat Leon Estate and lots less than the Ford Focus Estate and the Toyota Corolla Touring Sports. 

The Octavia Estate is predicted to depreciate at around the same rate as the Corolla Touring Sports and slower than the Focus Estate, helping to keep PCP finance rates competitive. Likewise, insurance costs should sit around the same as those rivals. 

CO2 emissions and fuel consumption are good, even for the petrol engines, and broadly in line with the Focus's.

The hybrid Corolla performs even better, but it’s worth pointing out that the Octavia's diesel engines are RDE2 compliant, so company car users are not liable for a 4% surcharge.

That said, you can no longer get the Octavia Estate as a plug-in hybrid, so even the far more expensive Mercedes E-Class Estate PHEV will cost less in benefit-in-kind (BIK) tax, while the MG5 EV electric car is even cheaper still.

Equipment, options and extras

First off, all versions of the Octavia Estate have a few handy treats, including the umbrella in the passenger door and an ice scraper clipped to the fuel filler flap.

SE trim gets 16in alloy wheels, a leather-trimmed steering wheel, two-zone climate control, keyless start, automatic lights and wipers, cruise control and touchscreen infotainment.

Next up is SE Technology, which is mainly aimed at business users and offers the best value for money. It gains floor mats, an auto-dimming rear-view mirror and more distinctive alloy wheels, front parking sensors and built-in sat-nav.

There’s a bit of a price jump to SE L, but it's still not exorbitant in the grand scheme of things. You get 17in alloys, privacy glass, power-folding door mirrors, suede trim, heated front seats, adaptive cruise control and keyless entry.

Skoda Octavia Estate interior driver display


The Octavia Estate wasn’t included in the 2023 What Car Reliability Survey but the Skoda Octavia Hatchback didn’t perform all that well in the family car class, sitting right near the bottom of the table. 

Skoda as a brand, meanwhile, fared better and claimed 16th place out of the 32 included car makers. In fact, that places it above most of its competitors, including Ford, Seat, Peugeot and Vauxhall. Toyota did very well, though, claiming second place. 

If things do go wrong, you’ve got a three-year, 60,000-mile warranty that can be extended to five years and 100,000 miles for a fee. That’s pretty standard across the class and doesn’t have a patch on Toyota’s 10-year warranty, providing you service your car at an official dealer.

Safety and security

The Octavia was awarded the maximum five stars for safety when it was tested by Euro NCAP in 2022.

The Focus Estate and Corolla Touring Sports both scored better for protecting adult occupants and children in the back, but those rivals were tested in 2019, under a less stringent regime, making the results impossible to directly compare.

Automatic emergency braking (AEB), lane-keeping assistance and an e-Call system that notifies the emergency services if you’re involved in an accident are standard on all models.

You can also add an optional Travel Assist pack to SE Technology and above, which includes traffic sign recognition and adaptive cruise control, and you can add blindspot monitoring to SE L trim.

Costs overview 

Strengths Well priced; lots of standard equipment

Weaknesses Reliability could be better; PHEV and electric rivals cost less for company car drivers

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  • While the Octavia is a big car, the Skoda Superb Estate is its bigger sibling. That includes more space for people in the front and rear, as well as a slightly larger boot – up from 640 litres to 660 litres.

  • Our favourite version of the Octavia Estate is the mid-spec SE Technology, because it keeps the cost very reasonable but also gives you loads of standard equipment. We’d stick to the entry-level 1.5 TSI 150 petrol engine unless your mileage is high enough to consider one of the diesels.

  • No, the Octavia Estate will cost you less as a cash purchase than the Superb Estate. You can check the latest prices using our New Skoda Deals page.

At a glance
New car deals
Target Price from £27,755
Swipe to see used car deals
Nearly new deals
From £18,448
RRP price range £27,755 - £37,800
Number of trims (see all)4
Number of engines (see all)3
Available fuel types (which is best for you?)diesel, petrol
MPG range across all versions 50.5 - 62.1
Available doors options 5
Warranty 3 years / 60000 miles
Company car tax at 20% (min/max) £1,539 / £2,101
Company car tax at 40% (min/max) £3,078 / £4,203
Available colours