Excellent review and comments! In Australia, the new Skoda has just been launched, and the Octavia RS has received very good reviews from local motoring journalists. It is available in bright yellow or gleaming metallic blue, and is absolutely stunning! It is priced at $37,490 AU for the sedan, and $39,490 for the wagon. The 2.0L turbo petrol four rides on 18-inch alloys, lowered by 15mm and is equipped with taut sports suspension.
As one motoring journalist states- "Skoda should be high on any Czech list". Enjoy your Octavia vRS!
Just to add.
* I forgot to add my mpg is UK Imperial gallons and you'd need to lower this a bit for US Gallons.
Something that is important to my parents, but not to me is that both front seats are hight adjustable. So if you're a little stiff in the legs the seats can be pumped up to make getting out a little easier.
Quite a jump from a diesel Clio to a brand new VRs Octavia! Did you win the lotto?
As for the handling, I've been in two of these cars when driven by a professionals at Millbrook, and I can assure you that the handling is fantastic, don't be afraid to hang it out on the corners, the car will dig in and grip way beyond what most drivers will ever need or use. Not sure that I'd have taken the 18" wheels though, as you say the noise and actually the ride comfort too will both be worse than with the 17" wheels. I too think that the later shape cars are very attractive, but so does my local plod traffic division - they've just got 3 in, watch out if you drive on the roads of south Hampshire, you will not out-run one of these cars unless you're in something very fast.
Personally I'm considering the Octavia VRs diesel, the usable performance is pretty much the same as the petrol-powered cars, but with a 25% improvement in MPG. Sounds like a bargain, just a shame that Skoda have adopted the VAG policy of down-specc'ing their cars - not having electric windows all round, or cruise as standard in this class of car is way behind the competition.
I only can agree and confirm the review. I have O2 vRS TFSI for almost 2 years now, running without a problem (knock on wood). If I would be forced to tell something negative, noisy window glass in the front doors (ugly sound when the window is open and the door is closing), considering that as absolutely stupid minor thing, but it seems many others have similar experiences.
Regarding diesel vs petrol engines: VW's TDI is simply noisy, very noisy, regardless PD or CR. The (diesel's) torque is higher, however completely useless (only the front wheels are driven) also TFSI has a problem to exploit its torque, especially on wet road or dust. The diesel has (of course) better fuel consumption, but TFSI is also "not too hungry" if you can control right foot a little bit. The difference in max power is small, so IMHO the nicest feature of the TFSI is not the max power itself, but the fact the max torque is available from 1800 revs up to 5000 revs, so almost up to max power revs, TDI has no chance here. Another nice TFSI feature, there is no turbo-effect at all, I mean nothing you can really feel or detect. The power is rising lineary, no gaps, no kicks, does not matter revs or actual load. So I prefer TFSI.
The car is very pleasant to drive, does not matter if you are on holiday tour, or on highway in Germany. No need to change gears frequently, very stable in curves in high speed, overall making the feeling you can trust it. Of course, it is not "hot hatch" or strictly sport-car, so IMHO comparing it with Civic Type R or Astra OPC is meaningless. I'm taking it as speedy family/manager car, sprinter in the city, distance-eater on highway.
The brakes are also much better then ordinary Skoda/VW/Audi average - precise and power-full, have no experience like fading or in-accurateness, maybe in some very very hard conditions. I like the car too much to perform some brutal tests like periodically slowing down from 200km/h to 0. I can also confirm, the 17" wheels is better choice for this car, it seems the chasis and the 18" don't like each-other.
The vRS is friendly to the rest of crew also, the seats are good and comfortable, easy and usually doing hundreds of km, no bad feelings in back or legs. The noise inside depends on the quality of the road and speed, in 120-160km/h the engine makes "ambient" (and really beautifull) sound, but also in higher speeds there is nothing terrible noisy.
Regarding the oil consumption, my experience, the first year I was pushing the car hard, discovering its limits and simply enjoying it, so the oil consumption was 1litre per 20 000 km. The dealer confirmed is it OK, TDI engines takes more oil, I was told.
There are many flame-wars on the net where people are going to kill themselves for comparing O2 vRS with BMW, Audi, Volvo, etc. Well the comparison is always terrible, I think the important thing is, that Octavia is fully comparable with them, does not matter what is particulary better or worse. And the vRS is the best Octacia.
So at the end - up to now - I'm "happy" vRS user ;)
"Quite a jump from a diesel Clio to a brand new VRs Octavia! Did you win the lotto?"
Lol, that's one of the funniest comments I ever read, asking someone if they won the lotto enabling them to purchase a skoda! Is that a joke surely?!
There's nothing wrong with Skodas!! I can't believe people are still living in the dark ages!!
'There's nothing wrong with Skodas!! I can't believe people are still living in the dark ages!!'
Sssssshhhhhhhhh, don't tell them. We don't want them to know that about the biggest, bestest, secret in automotive history!
Why is it that those people who have purchased skoda's seem to think they are privy to great auto manufacturing knowledge that the rest of the world are apparently oblivious to. Yes it's a Skoda, its built under the guidance of the VAG group. So what, it's still a Skoda, the manufacturer has as much kudos and brand equity as a Lada/Proton/Kia or Hyundai.
In my experience a Skoda has zero presence on the road, and I note other drivers readily pull out in front of those Skoda cars.
Selling these Skoda cars onwards could be difficult - the only buyers will be the broke and the elderly (who no longer care about image).
You'll actually find the the VW parentage of Skoda keeps resale values quite high. Much better than a Ford or Vauxhall of similar cost.
Looks are subjective. I found the Golf particularly dreary and over priced.
Skoda drivers tend to be a little smug because they have the quality of VW without the premium. Seat drivers are often just as happy.
Skoda presents some of the best value for money motoring you can buy right now. If you are a badge snob then you'll have to pay the £6k premium for your A3 or Gti.