Skoda Auto India has finally given
the Octavia a facelift. The outgoing model was largely popular due to its neat
no-nonsense design. The new model gets a more bold and unique look. Skoda has
not introduced any updates to the powertrain but the cabin has been tweaked to
look a bit more contemporary than before. We check out the changes.
To look at, the Octavia still
holds most of those design elements that gave it a dapper character. Clean
straight lines that boast of sophistication and panache are what define the
profile of the Octavia. The front fascia has received a major overhaul and now
features a quad headlamp design. While the previous design was simpler and more
functional, the new quad setup does add a bit of class and flavour to the new Octavia.
The split headlamp seamlessly integrates with the chiseled front sitting
between the butterfly grille which gets glossy black inserts. The inner lamps
have been designed to complement the front grille and the outer ones look sharp
1798cc, 4 Cylinder, Turbocharged Petrol
1968cc, 4 Cylinder, Turbocharged Diesel
7-speed DSG gearbox (AT)/ 6-speed
DSG gearbox (AT)
McPherson Strut with lower triangular links and torsion bar
Multi Link Axle
Compound Link Crank Axle
Skoda has also included an
adaptive LED headlamp setup on the new Octavia. The LED lamps cast a decent
beam and also get an auto high beam function. Skoda has also touched up the
front bumper with the addition of a neat looking chrome strip running between
the fog lamps which are now a shade sleeker. The bonnet also has been redone to
add a touch of macho appeal and looks bolder than before. The side profile more
or less retains the design DNA of the outgoing model but gets a set of newly
designed 16 inch alloys. A seamlessly subtle shoulder line running from front
to back gives the side profile of the vehicle a butch feel. Moving over to the
rear, a set of reworked tail lamps along with the bumper get minor updates. The
overall design and character of the new Octavia is essentially bolder than
Interior Design and Features of new 2017
Skoda has made a significant
improvement in the cabin which comes in the form of an 8.0 inch touch screen
infotainment setup. The change is visually evident and lends the dash a more
premium feel. Skoda has even done away with the push buttons that surrounded
the previous touch screen unit and replaced them with touch enabled ones. The
functionality of the touch setup is quite good and it proves to be quite easy
to operate. The infotainment setup gets Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and
Skoda has also added features
such as a park assist and ambient lighting for the top variant. Other updates
include a smarter looking steering wheel and a redesigned instrument cluster.
The interior colour combination of beige and black gives the cabin a modish
appeal. The cabin is spacious and comfy with plenty of features to ensure the
utmost comfort and convenience one desires in a saloon of this class. While
testing out the park assist function we were quite surprised to find how handy
it is in day to day use. The system engages almost seamlessly and the driver
needs only to put in minimal effort. Another handy feature that has been
incorporated on the new Octavia is a driver attention assist feature which
reads the driver's inputs from the steering and will give a warning signal if
it detects input patterns of drowsiness.
Engine and Performance of new 2017 Skoda Octavia
Most of the changes on the
new Octavia are cosmetic and the Czech company has not introduced any changes to
the powertrains. The saloon gets a choice of three engines - a 1.4L TSI, 1.8L
TSI and a 2.0L TDI. The 2.0 litre diesel mill churns out 140.8hp and 320Nm of
torque while the 1.4L TSI puts out 147hp and 250Nm. The 1.8L TSI petrol powered
variant which I drove delivered a top of the line 177hp and 250Nm. The engine
comes mated solely to a 7-speed DSG gearbox which is exceptionally smooth and
equally thrilling. Peak power of 180hp comes in high in the band but a peak
torque of 250Nm is readily available quite low in the rpm range (1250-5000rpm)
thus delivering a very sporty performance on demand.
I also got to sample the 2.0L
diesel which is more efficient than its petrol counterparts. The engine comes
mated to a 6-speed DSG gearbox. While the 1.8L TSI petrol delivers 14.7kmpl the
2.0L TDI diesel delivers 19.3kmpl. The diesel mill is punchy and proves to be a
lot of fun on long open straights. The rear track has been increased by 30mm on
the 1.8L TSI petrol which has a multi-link axle. The 2.0L TDI and 14.L TSI
which get a compound link crank axle see an increase of 20mm. The increase has
seemingly improved the control the driver gets over these vehicles. The Octavia
is essentially very comfortable to drive thanks to a very well engineered
suspension setup. The suspension also gives the driver great control over this
vehicle making it a top pick for those who don't want to be driven. With a
lineup of just the right safety features and driver aides, the Skoda Octavia
proves to be safe and sporty at the same time.
Skoda has added just the
right amount of flair to reignite the fire. The Octavia boasts of bolder looks
with a sharper and stronger character. The interiors feel more contemporary and
functional. What remains to be seen is the price which we expect to be anywhere
between the Rs. 22-23 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi) mark.
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