Last year half of Skoda’s Spanish customers opted for one of its three SUVs (Kamiq, Karoq, and Kodiaq) but if we take the numbers by models, we discover that just behind them (not much position anymore) the saloon appears Octavia, which resists as its best-selling car worldwide. By the way this year it is among the finalists for the Car of the Year award in Europe.

Of course, in the data for Spain (just over 3,800 units were registered) many company purchases have slipped in be they for VTC services or as renting fleets. But it is a car that continues to have a hit with the private-public since it is difficult to find others that offer the relationship that this one in price, space, and content.

They are arguments that came from behind and that, with the fourth generation released last year, have taken an important leap forward. The design has changed (for the better), you can see much more quality and technology in the interior (just look at the digital screens of the instrumentation and the console), and accessing its cabin is doing it to what we would find in a larger car (it touches the 4.70 meters long) with a boot that is to take your hat off: between 600 and 640 liters depending on whether it is the saloon or the family Combi.

Also, the commercial offer is the richest it has ever known, because the Scout versions, more jacket, or the RS sports have a life of their own. The mechanics that complete the range the months that have passed since its launch, the range has been completed until it has pure gasoline and diesel, micro-hybrid and CNG mechanics (both with an ECO label) and now, the icing on the cake has arrived: the hybrids plug-ins called iV. They use the same technology

That already debuted the largest saloon in the house, the Superb, and, in fact, are the second model to receive it. They are offered in both the sedan and the station wagon and with two power variants: 204 and 245 hp, this second is reserved for the RS finish. The other two endings are the intermediate Ambition and Style.

On the outside, you have to pay attention to distinguish them since they are only differentiated by the logos, the battery recharging socket located on the left front wing, and the 18-inch semi-faired wheels, which will give a very slight extra efficiency. I do not like them. You can also mount other radios.

Inside doors, three-quarters of the same: only the graphics dedicated to the hybrid part will tell us that we are facing these variants. By the way, as is happening in the latest VW Group models, menu navigation sometimes seems confusing, long, and complicated. Come on, it is more distracting than necessary,

Although those who use the car for years will not be able to fiddle around the different screens like crazy and automate the processes … Also, the steering wheel makes up for it since it allows us to manage up to 14 functions without removing hands or sight of the road.

Nor do we like the current Octavia the appearance of some controls such as the DSG gear selector (six-speed in both versions and with paddles on the steering wheel). It is very small because now there is no mechanical connection but the orders to change arrive electronically.

Although what disgusts me is finishing in a rugged plastic (to give more tact) because you think not if you have taken a ‘Chinese’, but I’m sure the Chinese are crazy that chrome. Instead, we already said that the overall presentation is very good and the optional ergonomic seats excellent.

RS models, a wolf in sheep’s clothingThose of the seats are appreciated because the philosophy of these plug-in versions (its market is expected to grow 250% this year) are aimed more at quiet driving, seeking to maximize efficiency and electric range than at ‘knife-edge’ driving.

This is not to say that the car does not support it. In fact, the starter version already offers considerable power and a torque of 350 Nm thanks to the electrical input, being able to accelerate from 0 to 100 km / h in just 7.7 seconds, figures that in the case of the RS (with 41 more hp) are 400 Nm and 7.3 seconds, respectively.

It is the ‘bad’ side of the car, although whoever acquires it will be seduced more by what the electrical part helps. In both cases, supported by an 85 kW (115 hp) engine that is powered by a 13 kW capacity lithium-ion battery.

Because, according to the data approved by the brand, this results in autonomies in a zero-emissions mode that range between 62 and 69 km, with average consumption (starting from the battery at full capacity and then operating in hybrid mode) that are around one liter every 100 km, and CO2 emissions between 22 and 27 grams. Or what is the same, it will allow us to enjoy the ZERO label of the DGT with all the advantages that this implies.

Is that data real? Honestly, I can’t assure you. The contact was so short (in time and distance) that it is not significant data, but I will tell you about it. With the 204 hp variant, I did 62 km, first until the battery was exhausted (I started from 39 km on a very cold day) and then using the hybrid model. Respecting the speed limits, the average consumption that the computer gave me was 2.1 liters.

Also, you can put your hand to an RS saloon, and here the expense it gave me was much higher: five liters. Artificial sound, but not unpleasant is true that it was only 25 kilometers but I thoroughly enjoyed playing with the different driving modes of the car. On the one hand the normals of other Octavia (you know, Eco, Comfort, Sport. On the other other electrical specifics are added.

One to work 100% only with battery power (EV) and another hybrid, although here you can let the car manage the charge of the one according to the demands of driving or set a level that we do not want it to drop. In this sense, we can also select three levels of energy regeneration through the change: low automatic or high.

The most satisfying if you like to drive is the Sport. You can combine it with either of the two electric ones and it gives the engine an (artificial) noise as if there were many more cylinders. It’s a bit badass, but it also reminds you that you have all the ‘chicha’ at your disposal. Well, not all, because in EV you will not get more than 80 kW (110 CV) and you will not be able to go above 140 km / h.

But friend, go to the hybrid and the beast wakes up, with a capacity for acceleration and recovery that in one breath puts you at risk of losing many euros and many points on your driving license. More so if as was the case the car comes with a dynamic adjustable suspension DCC chassis. As a promotion the brand includes it if you decide on the RS finish. But you don’t go bad either if you opt for the basic Octavia iV, 204 hp, and Ambition finish.

The standard equipment includes 18-inch wheels, digital instrumentation, 10-inch central display, dual-zone climate control, driving mode selector, adaptive cruise control that operates up to 210 km / h, dynamic taillights, seats with lumbar adjustment, and a system that warns you of lane departure. Also, for free for now, we have a power tailgate and a rearview camera.

An Octavia iV from less than 30,000 euros on this, the Style (1,500 euros more expensive) adds full matrix LED headlights, LED fog lights, smart key, parking aid, and tinted rear windows.

Finally, the RS costs another 2,600 euros more and, in addition to the extra horses, it comes with specific 18-inch wheels, RS front bumper and rear spoiler, sports seats, lane-keeping aid, black longitudinal bars (in the Combi ), and the aforementioned DCC. The last three items, as a freebie. All versions come with two charging cables: one is the traditional Shuko (with a plug like the one at home) and the other that is used for public poles or in shopping centers.

Depending on whether we use one or the other, it can recharge up to 80% of the battery in 3 hours and 45 minutes or 2 hours and 35 minutes. Of course, like most PHEVs, the car does not support more than 3.6 kW of the load. Although some brands like Peugeot do offer (forcing you to pay 300 euros, which could be given away) the possibility of doing it at 7.4 kW.

Of course, a specific app will allow us to control the recharge level from the phone, program it or pre-air the car before taking it. The most negative in this sense, you can imagine, is what we lose from the trunk no less than 150 liters although there are still very reasonable figures.

450 liters in the saloon and 490 in the family that also, we can take advantage of the high. The official sale prices of the new Skoda Octavia iV range between 36,420 for the 204 hp sedan with Ambition trim. And they finish in the 41,200 of the Combi RS. They are prices in line with the market low even if we compare them with some smaller PHEVs since these figures must be discounted as a launch campaign between 1,700 and 2,420 euros. If we also finance with the brand subtract another 2,300 and 2,400 euros.

Finally, using the Moves II plan, where there are still funds, there are between 1,900 and 2,600 euros more to cut. Total that the initial version would cost less than 30,000 euros and the top of the range for about 35,000.