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Cars Skoda Superb iV SE-L 2020 UK review

02:30  24 january  2020
02:30  24 january  2020 Source:   autocar.co.uk

Skoda Superb 1.4 TSI iV 2019 review

  Skoda Superb 1.4 TSI iV 2019 review Smooth, refined saloon adopts Passat GTE’s plug-in hybrid powertrain for economy and performance boostsThe car moves off the mark on electricity and the engine chimes in only after you show it, via the accelerator, how much power you need. Drive normally in the selectable EV mode and it will proceed very quietly. This will suit many owners’ drive-to-work applications so well that some will visit a filling station only every month or two. From an ordinary household plug, the car's battery takes about five hours to charge. A wallbox will do it in about half that time.

Skoda Superb 1. 4 TSI iV 2019 review . Smooth, refined saloon adopts Passat GTE’s plug-in hybrid powertrain for economy and performance boosts. The Superb iV is one half of a duo of electrified Skodas that's emerging right now onto UK roads – the other half being the Citigo iV all-electric city car.

Skoda has announced that its new Superb iV plug-in hybrid will be priced from £31,970 when it arrives in Britain in January. The figure was revealed to journalists during the UK launch of the SE L includes 18in alloy wheels, rear privacy glass, full matrix LED headlights and an electrically operated boot.

What is it?

Remember when plug-in hybrids used to be expensive? I know, I know; they still very much are for the most part. But this year we should see one or two new PHEV arrivals begin to change that – and the first is this, the first ultra-low-carbon, plug-in machine of any kind to be built by Czech value champions Skoda.The Superb iV is one half of a duo of electrified Skodas that's emerging right now onto UK roads – the other half being the Citigo iV all-electric city car. There will be eight more ‘iV’-badged models along over the next three years, which combined are the upshot of a €2bn investment. And while it may be a little confusing that the firm has elected to brand its plug-in hybrid and all-electric wares alike, we can be assured – apparently – that all of them will bring new value appeal to a market for electrified new cars that's now set to become very much more competitive and diverse very quickly indeed.The new petrol-electric Superb certainly kicks things off in that direction. Priced from a whisker under £32,000, it’s some 20 per cent cheaper than the entry-point for sales of the BMW 330e, and has a 15 per cent advantage over the related VW Passat GTE. The latter comparison is particularly interesting in light of the fact that the car uses the same hybrid powertrain (which mates a 154bhp 1.4-litre TSI engine with a six-speed twin-clutch gearbox and a 114bhp electric motor) as the Passat, and has the same 13kWh lithium-ion drive battery.

What is it like?

Large, comfortable and practical, just as the Superb has always been; and rational and straightforward in its character. It's pretty plain and unexciting to drive, too, in a way that plug-in hybrids generally haven’t risked being so far – but which, you might argue, the price positioning of this one uniquely permits it to be.

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The UK range of the 2020 Skoda Superb will be divided into six trim grades: S, SE, SE Technology, SE L , Sportline Plus and the flagship Laurin & Klement. Even the base S models, which start from £24,655, will come with a generous list of standard equipment that includes LED front and rear lights

There is surprisingly little of the ‘special-derivative’ cabin garnish that we typically see on PHEVs about the interior. Our mid-level SE L test car had sports seats, a strip of carbonfibreish veneer and a sprinkling of ambient lighting, but nothing that you wouldn’t expect to find on any mid-trim business saloon.

The car’s controls, its layout and its general appointments are all very normal. If not for the special digital instrumentation graphics of the Virtual Cockpit binnacle, as required to allow the driver to effectively manage and blend petrol and electric power and monitor how the battery is charging (and discharging) on the move, you might very well not recognize it as an electrified model at all. The driving position is unusually highly perched for a saloon, and so visibility is good and long-distance comfort likewise.

Skoda Superb iV plug-in hybrid now on sale from £31,970

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Skoda has announced that its new Superb iV plug-in hybrid will be priced from £31,970 when it arrives in Britain in January. The figure was revealed to journalists during the UK launch of the rest of the revised Superb range and makes the new model £4730 cheaper than its sibling, the new Volkswagen

Top Gear reviews the Skoda Superb . The Skoda Superb , the third generation of Skoda ’s giant, range-topping saloon, now more giant and range-topping than ever. Spun off the VW Group’s ubiquitous MQB platform, the Superb is 3cm longer and 5cm wider that its not-very-small predecessor

The Superb iV imposes a minor practicality compromise over its conventionally fuelled rangemates, but it’s not one that’s too noticable – and you wouldn’t expect anything less from a car with such a remarkable reputation in this field. Its drive battery is carried under the back seats and within the wheelbase, but some of its power electronics are located under the boot floor – which means boot space drops from 625- to 485 litres for the hatchback version, and from 680- to 510- in the estate. This sounds like a big sacrifice on paper, but in practice all you really lose out on is underfloor storage areas. Second-row passenger space is still good enough to beat most mid-sized executive saloons.

The one measurement where this big Skoda doesn’t quite deliver such expansiveness is cabin width: a limitation of the Superb's widely-shared model platform. If you’re looking to get three youngish kids in booster seats across the back row, there are probably slightly more accommodating options for the money.

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The SUPERB iV plug‑in hybrid and the CITIGOe iV are just the beginning. The first all‑electric ŠKODA based on Volkswagen Group’s MEB modular Just like all of the SUPERB models, the ŠKODA SUPERB iV will be produced at the Kvasiny plant. The SUPERB iV is the first ŠKODA model to

The UK range of the 2020 Skoda Superb will be divided into six trim grades: S, SE, SE Technology, SE L , Sportline Plus and the flagship Laurin & Klement. Skoda promises that the plug-in hybrid Superb iV will offer sub-40g of CO2 emissions, along with an all-electric range of up to 34 miles (54km).

On the move, the car’s main dynamic qualities are its comfort, efficiency and ease of use – it's quite striking how "normal" the iV feels to use and to operate. Urban speeds are mostly taken care of under electric power, where responsiveness is good but not particularly notable, and drivability easy but not rousing or encouraging.

As standard the iV comes on 17in wheels, but our test car ran on optional 19s that caused it to trip and thump a little over nastier ridges around town, and also created slightly more road noise at higher speeds than suited its otherwise laid-back motive character. Ride comfort is generally good, though, thanks to a compliance-oriented suspension tune that makes the car absorbent of bigger inputs (DCC adaptive dampers are standard on every Superb iV, interestingly; while optional on the pricier VW Passat GTE) – if a little bit soft and short on body control at greater velocities.

There's a familiar choice of primary driving modes (Eco, Comfort, Normal, Sport, Individual), to which three hybrid-specific secondary modes are added (electric, ‘hybrid auto’ and ‘hybrid manual’). Electric mode is self explanatory; the second mode sees the car itself managing how battery power is deployed, the third mode giving you the choice of when to use the battery, preserve its charge or top it up.

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2020 Skoda Superb . Another feature of the innovative full LED Matrix system is the animated Coming/Leaving Home function, which automatically In addition to the plug-in hybrid drive available for the new ŠKODA SUPERB iV , there is a choice of six other engines which all fulfil the Euro

The ŠKODA SUPERB Estate SE L has a cutting-edge design on the outside, and a spacious and luxurious style on the interior. Order by 01/04/ 2020 . Excludes SE Technology and SUPERB iV . Indemnities may be required. ŠKODA Financial Services.

It's possible, then, to make full use of the Superb iV's 25-30 mile all-electric range twice – bookending a 50 mile motorway commute – if you began your journey with a fully-charged battery: it can be restored from empty to a full charge over that kind of cruising trip. Real-world fuel economy will depend entirely how you use it – but assuming you can split your mileage roughly 50/50 between electric and petrol motoring (which will mean doing plenty of at-home charging) 70mpg is about what you’ll get.

The Superb iV’s outright performance level is strongish, but even if you drive it around in ‘Sport’ mode all the time, it doesn’t really feel sporty or fun. The car’s sheer size, its mass and its comfort bias prevents it from engaging its driver much. You’re obliged to get deep into the accelerator pedal before any true urgency is conjured up from the powertrain, and meanwhile the body is allowed to roll markedly through corners, while the chassis only responds to steering inputs in quite gentle and fairly inert fashion and it does allow the odd bit of pseudo-torquesteer to divert your line on occasion if you corner and accelerate hard at the same time.

All of which would be ideal for laid-back, low-stress, low-emissions, money-saving daily motoring, of course – provided you do plenty of short-range trips and have plenty of opportunities to charge up. Run the Superb iV like any other petrol saloon and it’ll return 38-42mpg depending on how keenly you drive it. Even if you do get keen, it won’t excite you much.

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Skoda Superb 1. 4 TSI iV 2019 review . Smooth, refined saloon adopts Passat GTE’s plug-in hybrid powertrain for economy and performance 2015 Skoda Superb Estate 1.6 TDI SE UK review . Entry-level diesel variant of Skoda 's large estate is roomy and well equipped, but more powerful models

a person driving a car © Provided by Autocar

Should I buy one?

Right now, if it’s the only PHEV saloon in your company car list bracket (and it might well be), you should seriously consider it. With the way that company car tax is changing this April, you could probably at least halve your BIK liability by picking it instead of a conventional petrol or diesel rival.

Meanwhile, if you’re spending your own cash and simply want a big family car that’ll feel familiar and easy to use, won’t cost a packet up front and really will deliver fuel and emissions savings over predominantly short-range trips, it should be equally hard to overlook.

The Superb iV’s sheer unremarkableness is at once its greatest strength and its biggest problem; because it’s tough to really want a car whose main ambition is simply to seem so practical and normal. The thing is, out of a context in which plug-in cars have played every wildcard and joker there is to be played, risking being normal, sensible and relatively well-priced is arguably the boldest option. I wouldn’t be surprised if Skoda ends up being richly rewarded for taking it.

Skoda Superb iV SE-L specification

Where Feltham, UK Price £34,755 On sale now Engine 4cyls, 1395cc, turbocharged, petrol; plus electric motor Power 215bhp @ 6000rpm (total system output) Torque 295lb ft (total system output) Gearbox 6-spd twin clutch automatic Kerb weight 1700kg Top speed 139mph 0-62mph 7.4sec Fuel economy 156.9mpg (WLTP Combined) CO2 39g/km (WLTP Combined) Rivals Volkswagen Passat GTE, BMW 530e

a car parked in a parking lot © Provided by Autocar

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