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Skoda Octavia RS 245 | Video Review | CarsIreland.ie

The Skoda Octavia RS 245: Much loved hot hatch gets a facelift and a little more kick

“The Skoda Octavia RS 245: Much loved hot hatch gets a facelift and a little more kick”

  • More powerful and better to drive than before

  • Exceptionally spacious

  • Impressive infotainment

90%

Overall Rating

  • Subtle styling might be too subtle for some

  • Lacks prestige of the GTI badge

  • Ride can be very firm for day to day driving

Overall Rating

Overview

Proving sensible doesn’t have to be boring, Skoda bring us the ultimate sleeper car in their new 245HP Octavia RS. That’s 15 more horses than the last model and there’s a few more updates too. It now wears that divisive Octavia facelift, a set of 19-inch alloy wheels, and some new gloss black detailing on the grille, mirrors and exhausts.

There have been a few minor changes inside the cabin too though it still stays relatively understated. Clues as too what’s under the hood include some nice Alcantara sports seats with the RS logo, a flat bottom sports steering wheel, and behind that, a lap timer.

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Interior Gallery

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Space & Practicality

The Octavia RS is just as practical as a standard Octavia. In other words, very. There’s acres of space in the back, and legroom is particularly generous. It’s also got all those other clever little Skoda features like shopping bag hooks in the massive 590 litre boot, a hidden ice scraper in the fuel cap, a clip on the windscreen and a very clever one-handed bottle opening device in the front.

Equipment and Safety

There’s a massive amount of high-tech kit on board the latest RS and it’s just about as connected you can get. There’s a 9.2 inch Columbus Navigation system with some of the crispest graphics we’ve seen in quite some time. This comes equipped with Skoda Connect and Apple CarPlay and can even be used as a portable WiFi HotSpot to keep kids entertained on their tablets in the back. It also gets dual-zone Climatronic air-conditioning, parking sensors, a reversing camera, and a choice of ten different colours of ambient lighting in the cabin.

Performance & Running Costs

With a 2.0 TSI turbocharged 4 cylinder petrol engine under the hood pushing out 245HP, it’s just as much fun as you would suspect. It’s paired with a 7 speed DSG automatic transmission which is wonderfully smooth and fast and can take you from 0 – 100km per hour in just 6.6 seconds. It’s got a top speed of 250 km per hour (not that you’ll ever get to experience that here), but if you do fancy a bit of fun you’ve always got VRS mode. Press this button and flip it into sport and everything goes a bit nuts. It livens up the throttle response, the gearshift, and the note of the exhaust in the cabin so it feels and sounds like a proper hot hatch. From the inside at least.

It’s now got an electronically controlled limited slip differential on the front axle which ensures even weight and power distribution for faster, flatter cornering. It also sits about one and a half centimetres lower than a standard Octavia, which, when paired with the now standard 19 inch wheels, does give it quite a firm ride. This is great fun when you’re driving ‘spiritedly’, but can be a bit unsettling over suburban ramps or country potholes.

As for fuel economy, it’s not what you buy an RS for, but it’s actually not as bad as you might think at 6.6l per 100km. That’s the official figure, but driving the way an RS makes you want to drive it, you’ll probably struggle to get anywhere near that. If it’s good fuel economy you’re after – just buy a standard Octavia. The annual motortax bill is quite impressive in relation to performance at just €390.

Reliability & Residuals

We are big fans of the RS here. We like the way it blends performance and practicality in such a handsome but subtle way. It might still be the underdog to the GTI, but who doesn’t love an underdog? Especially when it comes with so much extra space.

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Details correct at time of publication
2018-03-01T16:09:57+00:00

About the Author:

Sinéad's career in motoring began in a car showroom where she got a feel for what really matters to the customer when buying a new car. She has a degree in Journalism and Irish from DIT where she specialised in TV and Production. These days she is delighted to be combining two passions (movies and metal) by shooting, presenting and producing video reviews of new cars for CarsIreland.ie. She is a member of the APMP (Association of Professional Motoring Press) and has a vote in the Irish Car of the Year awards.