Skoda has given the Octavia a mid-life facelift and as it is with facelifts, the car gets more than a nip and tuck in the face. How does the 2017 Skoda Octavia look (inside as well as outside) and drive? Indian automobile website MotorBeam finds out.
Let's start with the exteriors. The 2017 Skoda Octavia gets a full-LED quad headlight setup, redesigned bumper and revised LED tail-lights.
The signature butterfly Skoda grille continues to feature on the Octy while the newly designed 16-inch multispoke alloy wheels add some flair to the side profile.
The sedan is available in a choice of four colours - Candy White, Quartz Metallic, Brilliant Silver and Magic Black.
Coming to the interior, it is very reminiscent of the previous Octavia. The dashboard layout and steering wheel are the same.
However, you now get a centre console that houses the new 8-inch touchscreen infotainment in a glass housing.
Talking about the infotainment system, it gets Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity and is easy to use.
The audio quality from the 9-speaker Canton Sound System (in the top L&K variant) is crisp and clear.
Other features on offer are dual-zone automatic climate control, sunroof, leather seat upholstery, LED ambient lighting, Driver Fatigue Detection System, cruise control, rearview camera and hands-free parking system.
The hands-free parking system will take some time getting used to.
The seats in the Octavia are comfortable and supportive, even on long drives.
There is electric adjustment only for the driver's seat. While the rear bench is decently spacious with good knee room, head room but shoulder space is just about average.
Ingress and egress to the rear seat isn't the most comfortable. The rear seat also lacks under-thigh support.
Boot space is rated at 590-litres and that's humungous and if that's not enough, well, fold down the rear seats and you are treated to 1580-litres of cargo space.
There are no changes under the hood of the Skoda Octavia. It is still powered by a 2.0-litre TDI unit paired with a 6-speed DSG.
The tried and tested oil-burner unit churns out 143 PS of power at 3500-4000 RPM and 320 Nm of torque at 1750-3000 RPM.
The engine is peppy and fun to drive but there is considerable turbo-lag and once past that, the car feels at home.
Expect a mileage of 13-16 km/l with this engine. The DSG gearbox shifts cogs quickly and gets paddle-shifters, a Sport mode and a manual tiptronic mode.
There is also a 6-speed manual gearbox on offer. Skoda also offers the 2017 Octavia with a 1.4-litre and 1.8-litre TSI petrol motors.
Skoda has increased the rear track by 20 mm for the 1.4 and 2.0 variants and 30 mm for the 1.8 variant.
While the automaker claims that this helps in improved ride and handling, we couldn't find any noticeable difference. It could probably be evident when taking on corners hard.
The 1.4 and 2.0 variants get a torsion beam rear suspension while the 1.8 gets a multi-link suspension.
The torsion beam offers decent ride quality and it is only when you hit a bad patch of road, the car feels unstable.
Comparatively, the multi-link suspension provides better ride quality.
The steering is well-weighted and the all-wheel disc brakes provide proper bite.
Safety has always been at the forefront for Skoda.
The 2017 Octavia facelift comes with safety features like 8, 6 and 4 airbags on the top, mid and lower variant respectively.
You also get ABS with EBD, ESC, Electronic Differential Lock, Multi-Collision Braking and an iBuzz fatigue alert (available only on the top variant).
Skoda has been increasing its efforts in providing a hassle-free ownership experience and improving its reach across the country.
Let's get out the negatives first. The 2017 Octavia is pricey, Skoda's service isn't great and the cost of spare parts are on the expensive side.
If none of these actually seem to bother you, ie, if you don't mind paying that extra premium and if you have a Skoda dealership quite close to your home or office, well, what are you waiting for?
Go book yourselves the Octavia. It's got the looks, it's feature-packed, it has great engines and to round it all off, it's got well-sorted dynamics.