Skoda’s bestselling model of the last two decades is set for a makeover. One of the largest of the so called ‘compacts’ out there today, the Octavia hatch and estate are both about to be rejuvenated as the Czech manufacturer rings the changes in all departments, from interior and exterior design to on-board technologies and safety systems.
The exterior overhaul sees a markedly fresher and wider-looking front end most notable for its split LED headlights, whilst at the rear the Estate version comes with the option of an electric tailgate. There’s also a plethora of different wheel designs on offer, not to mention the choice between 16 and 18 inch alloys.
Whilst technically a compact, the new Octavia boasts space aplenty on the inside.
The cabin plays host to a smattering of new gizmos, the standout of which is an infotainment system featuring a 9.2-inch touchscreen display and super-fast LTE internet hotspot in top spec. The torrent of tech doesn’t stop there. More driver-centred gadgetry such as dynamic chassis control, trailer assist and parking assist is included as standard, as is the rear radar with blind spot detection. What’s more, the revamped Octavia gets a whole host of ergonomic extras such as a customisable passcode, allowing several users to save their own driving and infotainment preferences, plus a heated steering wheel and a removable torch for the Estate variant.
Skoda has already confirmed the powertrain options that will be available from launch. The four-strong roster includes two TSI petrol units and a pair of diesel equivalents. The most powerful of the petrols is the 148bhp 1.4 litre TSI whilst on the diesel front, drivers can opt for either the smaller 113bhp 1.6 litre or its 148bhp 2.0 litre counterpart. Whatever’s under the bonnet, the new Octavia comes with a choice of six or seven speed automatic transmission alongside the traditional stick-shift option.
Sales of the updated Skoda Octavia kick off in most world markets before the end of the year, although UK-based customers will have to hang tight until early 2017 to get their hands on the updated model.