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The all-new Skoda Octavia has just been launched with prices starting from Rs 26 lakh (ex-showroom).

Story: Anosh Khumbatta
Photography: Apurva Ambep

The Skoda Octavia has been an extremely popular sedan since the original was launched in 2001, and this fourth-generation car has some big boots to fill. So here are eight things to know about the new Skoda Octavia.

The design has been sharpened, but it is still recognisable as a Skoda Octavia

The new Octavia features a refined design in line with the times. The LED headlights are now slimmer than before and the unmistakable grille has been reshaped to merge with the headlamps. Similarly, the squarish tail-lamps from the previous Octavia have morphed into narrow, sleeker units that now extend onto the boot-lid. The gently curved bonnet flowing into the front fascia, sculpted doors, and a flowing roof-line give the new Octavia considerable road presence. The design is dominated by clean, uncluttered lines, typically European design cues, and spot-on proportions, resulting in an attractive car that is instantly recognisable as a Skoda Octavia.

Understated elegance is the theme on the inside

The plush cabin welcomes you into the Skoda Octavia, and surrounds you with contrasting black and suede beige tones, punctuated by shiny chrome elements on the steering wheel, dashboard, and central console. The leather-wrapped two-spoke steering wheel looks and feels excellent, and I love how the interior door-handles are incorporated into and flow with the design of the door-pads. Impressive attention to detail is apparent, and all materials and surfaces look and feel premium.

You now get two massive full-colour TFT displays with the Skoda Octavia

While the previous-generation Octy made do with physical dials for the driver interface and an 8.0-inch touchscreen for the infotainment system, the driver in the new Skoda Octavia gets treated to a massive 10.25-inch virtual cockpit, while the infotainment screen has also grown to 10 inches. The driver’s display can be customised to your taste, while touch response on the central screen is lightning-fast.

The Skoda Octavia now gets shift-by-wire

A shift-by-wire system replaces the mechanical transmission selector and all its associated linkages in the new Skoda Octavia. You now get a minimalistic tab on the centre console to control the transmission, greatly freeing up space and further streamlining the cabin.

The new Skoda Octavia gets only one engine option for the Indian market

With the VW Group holding off on introducing new diesel engines to our market, the 2021 Skoda Octavia is only available with the BS6-version of the exceedingly popular 1,984-cc, four-cylinder, TSI turbo-petrol motor that also powers the Superb. The motor is punchy and entertaining, making 320 Nm of twist from 1,500 to 3,990 rpm, with 190 ponies delivered from 4,180 rpm to the 6,000 rpm redline. Transmission duties are managed by a 7-speed DCT that does a great job, whether cruising along at 2,000 rpm with a light foot or revving the engine out aggressively and using the shift paddles.

The new Skoda Octavia boasts class-leading luggage space

With a cavernous, 600-litre boot, you have enough luggage space for a family vacation. Dropping the rear seats extends this to class-leading 1,555 litres, which can be helpful if you’re moving house.

This L&K variant gets all the bells and whistles

The 2021 Skoda Octavia is available in two trim levels: Style and L&K. If you can stretch your budget, go for the fully loaded variant to enjoy features like the 11-speaker Canton sound system, powered boot lid with virtual boot lid release pedal, 12-way electronically-adjustable front seats and exclusive colourways, as well as side airbags for rear passangers.

The Skoda Octavia is still fun to drive

This would be the most important point for enthusiasts, and I’m happy to report that that the best seat in the new Skoda Octavia is still the driver’s. The car is quick and entertaining enough to keep most of us happy, supported by that rev-happy engine and involving handling dynamics. The Octy effortlessly treads the fine line between subtlety and comfort through the week, with a dash of excitement thrown in for enthusiastic drivers over the weekend.


About the author: Anosh Khumbatta



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