Skoda vRS 245 review: ‘You’ll definitely swipe right with this one’
Price: from £25,185
Top speed: 155mph
0-62mph: 6.4 seconds
CO2: 146g/kmDo you online date? Having much luck? Ahh, thought not. Well, this may be why: someone has done a study (bizarre, I know) and found that across 5,000 profiles in which a vehicle is included in the personal picture, the most frequent car and pose is “leaning across a Vauxhall” – probably grinning and wearing a technical fleece, as well. No wonder interest is slow. You need to stand tall with a car that promises a far more seductive package.
You want to come across as reliable, astute, no-nonsense and stylish – but with a mischievous streak. Step forward the Skoda Octavia. The car is the Czech manufacturer’s most successful model and almost 40% of Skoda sales are Octavias. It comes either as a five-door hatchback or a five-door estate, and boasts a host of different-sized engines in both diesel and petrol.
Thanks to the trickle-down effect of VW’s model pyramid, the Octavia is essentially the smart way to buy a Golf. For something more eye-catching, you could then use the money you’ve saved to splash out on a vRS 245 – the most powerful Octavia ever produced. It will effortlessly ease you up to 155mph and will hit 62mph in a shade over 6 seconds – all this in a family car that comfortably seats five adults and has a large boot.
Skoda are masters at blending performance with practicality, proving that weekend thrills and the daily grind can happily coexist. The vRS has Xtreme black alloys with contrasting red brake callipers – as well as an umbrella hidden under the passenger seat; it has Alcantra suede seats so you don’t slide across them under heavy cornering – and also an easy-to-use auto parking feature; it has a chrome sports exhaust – and a removable LED torch in the spacious boot. It’s cake you can eat.
All this exhilarating performance is counterbalanced with a raft of safety programmes and driver aids. Reading the blurb, you could mistake this Octavia for a remarkably well-qualified academic. It has ESC, ABS, EBV, MSR, ASR, EDS, HBA, DSR, ESBS, TSA, MKB and XDS.
Inside, you’ll find more legroom, headroom and elbow room than the outgoing model. There’s an interior lighting pack with 10 colour options available, and the hub of the car’s connectivity and entertainment is the excellent Amundsen touchscreen.
So, we have a car that’s approachable, intuitive, good fun and good value. Let’s hope some of that rubs off on you and the next person to see your profile swipes right…
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