Passenger & boot space
How it copes with people and clutter
There’s plenty of space up front in the Octavia; a very tall driver will certainly be able to get comfortable even with a head room-robbing panoramic glass roof fitted. Storage is better than in most rivals, too: the door pockets are a good size with provision for a 1.5-litre bottle of water and the cooled glovebox is big enough to keep your entire £3.50 meal deal fresh. Trust us; we speak from experience.
Behind the gearlever are two fixed cupholders, which will keep your coffee-to-go secure and, ingeniously, can grip a drinks bottle tightly enough 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.
There’s also a large covered storage space under the front armrest that is perfect for hiding electronic devices and other valuables. It’s even cooled should you prefer to bring a second lunchbox.
The Octavia Estate has some of the most generous space of any family estate. Behind a tall driver with their seat pushed back, even a lofty passenger will be able to lounge in comfort. There’s loads of head and elbow room, too. Unfortunately, the middle-seat passenger has no choice but to place their feet either side of the car’s raised central tunnel.
Still, the big footwells mean this isn’t too restrictive, and the Octavia is still one of the most comfortable cars for the money for three passengers to sit side-by-side in the back. Just bear in mind that the Toyota Corolla Touring Sports has a much smaller central hump and a bit more head and leg room.
A central armrest with two cupholders is standard on all models and the rear door pockets are a decent size, too. 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.
Seat folding and flexibility
In terms of its flexibility, the Octavia Estate is pretty conventional, although the 60/40 split seats are at least folded by a couple of levers in the boot, so you don’t have to walk around to the passenger compartment.
Unfortunately, the seats don’t lie completely flat and they leave an awkward step in the extended load area, unless you opt for the variable-height boot floor. Standard on SE L First Edition and a cheap option on lesser versions, this is definitely worth having.
The Octavia’s boot is not only huge compared with similarly-sized rivals, but a roughly on a par with that of the far larger Mercedes E-Class Estate. We managed to fit nine carry-on suitcases under the parcel shelf, just two shy of what the even larger Superb Estate will take.
The load area is also longer and taller than those of most comparably priced estates, and it’s a practical, squared-off shape.
As standard, there’s a 12v socket, a couple of bag hooks and a couple of fenced off areas that will prevent your de-icer and other boot clutter from sliding around. Meanwhile, options include a space-saver spare wheel that sits under the boot floor, and an electric tailgate with or without gesture control.
Like the hatchback, mature and refined with added boot space
Competitive in lots of areas but not outstanding
A well sorted family estate that’s comfortable, spacious and a...
Stylish, practical and good value – a fine estate