An early review of my 2014 Skoda Octavia RS, I will submit another review later regarding servicing experiences, reliability, and ownership. I have owned the vehicle for about a month, optioned with the DSG gearbox, Leather appointed interior and the Black Pack' which includes 18" Gemini Anthracite alloys, black side mirrors , and a black grill.
The Adelaide dealer was excellent, providing information if I requested. I was also allowed to take the car for a drive solo; no pushy salesperson sitting next to me, talking up the cars good points, while glossing over its shortcomings. I didn't get the " Do you like the car, it will do everything you want it to" routine. C'mon guys..
For me, it came down to the Skoda VS the Renault Megane GT 220 premium, which I also test drove.
Why the Octavia RS over the Megane?
The RS, had better interior quality, a serene cabin, refinement, and additional space. While additional space wasn't a priority in the beginning, it is nice to have in the world of hot hatches. The boot in particular is cavernous! I also liked the Linear power delivery of the RS. The RS shares many components such as the engine and DSG gearbox from the current Golf GTI. The "MQB"platform is shared with the Golf, and Audi A3. Such is the quietness of the vehicle I am glad there is a speed alert fitted!
This time around we didn't want a manual, the Megane doesn't currently offer an automatic option. While both are sports orientated vehicles, I found the Megane's ride for city driving was very firm, at times jarring. The RS ride is also firm, although much more supple and compliant. When you have to live with these cars day to day, often for the daily commute this makes a difference. Perhaps also being in your umm late 40's influences this decision a tad.
Refinement, ride, performance, interior space and handling.
"Sports mode" setting normal, Eco and sport which includes a sound "actuator"
Tactility of switch gear, ease of use of infotainment
Not as much standard fruit as the Renault Megane premium.
No stand alone rear view camera option at the time of purchase. (It does have front and rear parking sensors. I understand it is now offered for an increased cost). A camera is offered on many sub 22K vehicles.
Engine may be a bit quiet for some drivers
Putting up with friends ribbing about owning a Skoda! These friends are living in the past! Skoda perhaps has more work to convince the Australian public to "look beyond the badge"to consider this quality vehicle. As a package it is hard to go past. In the meantime, I will wear my Christmas Tshirt that reads " I luv my Skoda, don't judge me" with immense pride!