So far the Octavia has spent a good deal of time with Hormazd and that means it’s been on his now customary drive to Mahabaleshwar and ushered him around the streets of South Mumbai. Anyone living here will know that while there’s traffic, South Mumbai is really tiny and so distance is shorter – at its longest north-south length, it’s barely over 15km.
TUCKED AWAY: In intermittent, wipers are visible on the windshield, and tucked out of sight when off.
However, I live in the suburbs, distances are far greater and traffic heavier still, so I was dreading using the Octavia as my daily driver. For one, it’s large, its petrol automatic isn’t a very efficient combination – Hormazd only managed 7.2kpl in the city – and the throttle has a hair-trigger response at low speeds.
SCREENED: Numerous customisations possible, including Android Auto info and circular dials!
So how did it do? About its size, well, that wasn’t so bad, the steering is light to twirl around in traffic and I found it quite manoeuvrable. The only issue here were the wing mirrors, which are small and limit rear visibility. Coming to efficiency, I was determined to limit damage to my wallet. I live 36km away from the office – Dahisar to Byculla – which means traversing the world’s most mind-numbingly jammed and monsoon-ravaged piece of tarmac – the Western Express Highway. The standard D mode was all I used on the gear selector (no S mode) and a very light throttle, and after a tankful to tankful measure, I got 8.7kpl.
PROD AND POKE: Changing fan speed is three touches away, not easy when on the move.
The light throttle no doubt helped eke out a bit more than what Hormazd got, but another benefit with feathering the throttle was that the aggressive low-end response was now contained, only surfacing at times when trying to close a gap. So it was an easy drive in the city; in fact, factoring in the suspension, I’d say it was super!
OFF THE GROUND: USB slots take up floor space, should have been positioned on the vertical surface.
With the new Octavia, Skoda has raised the ride height and softened the springs, which very nicely smoothens all the craters and ruts, plus the clearance was enough to drive over strewn rocks and loose paver blocks. So if your daily drive distance is low or your wallet deep, the Octavia will do very well as a city driver.
2022 Skoda Octavia long term review, first report