2004 Skoda Octavia Ambiente 1.9 turbo diesel from UK and Ireland


The car is proving to be a nightmare


Rear window wiper failed in January 2006.

Rear window wiper failed in January 2008.

Rear window wiper failed in December 2008.

A/M radio reception failed in August 2008.

Wiring corroded within floor due to leaks in body work.

General Comments:

This is now in the garage and is a costly repair. Skoda Autos have not been very helpful.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 24th January, 2009

2004 Skoda Octavia Classic 1.4 16v petrol from UK and Ireland


Don't believe the hype


Catalytic converter gone, and replaced at 12,000 miles.

Clutch became increasingly heavy, to the extent that I had to go to the doctor for a strain on the tendons behind my knee, I thought it was a skiing strain. After three visits, the doctor sussed it and I had to put a small cushion under my leg, as the front seat is very limited in terms of adapting shape. I am 35 and fit as a fiddle, so it's not me!

The engine fault lights comes on every month, then down to the garage who fix it; something to do with carbon build up. One month later back again.

The engine cuts out frequently when idling.

I have had it looked and serviced by a non dealer mechanic, who also couldn't figure out the problem.

General Comments:

My first car was a Skoda Felicia; it was superb and reliable. I wanted to get a Octavia for about 18 months, and when I passed the Irish driving test, I went down to the dealer and traded in my Opel Corsa, which was a fine little nipper for town, but I wanted a bigger car.

My car has been a disaster, and I am most likely getting rid of it this week in a good trade in.

In general though, the car is fairly cumbersome, the boot size is at the expenses of passenger room, the handling at speed feels precarious (at 80mph you think you were on ice), and the so called power steering is really heavy.

That said, I do feel that I got the equivalent of a bad pint, as a good friend has the same model and year, and it is like driving a different make of car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th August, 2007

3rd Jul 2009, 05:05

I have driven Skoda for the last 14 years, and have found them to be really good and reliable.

Currently I have an Octavia 1.9 diesel, which is excellent in all aspects bar one. I have pulled the drivers door handle apart 7 times in the last 2 years. This results in the electric window system falling apart, and the window is stuck either open or shut. Sometimes it is possible to manually press the microchip and at least use the window till I can get to the garage. The garage insists that this problem has never happened before, and I cannot believe that I have managed to do this 7 times. In 40 odd years of driving I have never pulled a door handle apart. Has anybody else experienced this problem, and if so how have they got round it?

4th Jan 2015, 14:26

I had this problem with my 2004 door handle; it boiled down to the microchip on the lock mechanism. The only way I got round it was to replace the door lock. The chip is not separate to the mechanism. This may not solve your issue, but it's a place to go for any ideas. It solved many of my auto windows up/down, lights on warning buzzer, and interior light issues. Hope it gives you a place to check.

2004 Skoda Octavia vRS 1.8 turbo petrol from UK and Ireland


An absolute bargain


Nothing so far - just got it.

General Comments:

I’ve just traded in my Nissan Almera GTi for a one owner 2 year old Octavia vRS, and boy, am I happy!

This car has exceeded my expectations in just about every area.

Great refinement – the engine is quiet, build quality is very good and the ride is firm, but not harsh.

I’d have preferred less of the light grey carpet, but the cabin is a very nice place to be in for my daily commute.

Looks like I’m going to get an average 35mpg on the motorway.

Performance is very good, more than adequate for all, but real racers. There’s a little bit of turbo lag below 2,500 rpm, but otherwise the pick-up is quick and strong.

The steering could do with more feel, and the car just doesn’t have the nimbleness of my Almera nor my wife’s 1997 Primera Si. For me though, it’s perfectly adequate given the nature of most of my driving.

All in all, I think these cars are a bargain at today’s prices (Jan 2007). Go and try one.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 23rd January, 2007

21st Feb 2009, 10:22

Well it's a couple of years on and the car has now done 86000 miles.

I've had two problems in that time. The first one was trivial - the rear wash wipe stopped working because a hose in the boot came loose - fixed that one myself. The second one was a faulty thermostat - cost me £150. Otherwise trouble free. Have just been told some of the front suspension components need replacing (bushings and roll bar) - I believe this is fairly common for these cars. I'm still on the original exhaust. I've got 30000+ miles out of the tyres (Continental).

I'm still very happy with it, although I hanker after some better handling when I get off the motorway - thinking of giving this car to my wife and buying a BMW coupe for myself.

BTW - I should have put a smiley on my original review - I must have missed the option to specify.

21st Feb 2009, 22:13

That's a pretty good run. I routinely replace my thermostat when I drain and replenish the coolant of any car I have every 40,000 km/2-3 years. Thermostats are cheap enough, and modern cars do not take very well to overheating for any reason. I replace my water pumps routinely at 80,000 km/4-5 years plus the thermostat while draining the coolant.

Glad to hear the car has been good to you.