Motoring journalist Sue Cooke took Skoda’s performance SUV for a spin and here’s what she thought
It really needs to be a special car to cope with everything that life throws at us. From a big shopping trip needing a spacious boot, a family outing needing comfort and space, transporting mountain bikes to a remote downhill mountain track needing off road capability to an outstanding presence on the office car park. Well I think I have found that car – Skoda’s new edition Kodiaq vRS, the brand’s first performance SUV.
You can unashamedly take this seven- seater on the track and the SUV will sprint from 0-62mph in just seven seconds and has a top speed of 136mph. You can even impress the boss with the striking design which includes 20 inch Xtreme alloy wheels with red brake calipers, dual exhaust pipes and sports bumpers. During my week of driving I did find it was a bit like a red rag is to a bull, in that every cocky idiot had a point to prove.
But the sporting flagship is also a very safe family car with a blind spot detection feature. When I reversed into a hard to find parking slot, using the rear parking sensors, the radio automatically lowered the volume. Equipment, such as Autonomous Emergency Braking, can detect dangerous situations involving pedestrians or other vehicles in front of the car, and will automatically apply the brakes.
The cabin interior is luxurious. There is a small lip on the long thigh squab so Alcantara trimmed sports seats are figure hugging and are finished with attractive contrast vRS stitching and logo. The third row of seats are accessed by pulling forward one of the second row of seats but need a little power and agility. The verdict from my two 9 year old passengers was that they were very comfortable.
Load space, one of the largest in its class, is perfect for doing the first back to school run with all the baggage that goes with each child. There is a generous helping of standard equipment which filled a side of A4 on the details Skoda provided me with and there were still options of a heated windscreen and washer nozzles and a rear view camera which was very clear when driving at night with the full LED rear lights. I like the panoramic sunroof which stretched the whole length of the car. The start stop button can be spotted immediately as it sits where an ignition key would normally go. The fully digital Virtual Cockpit display in Sport mode even has a speedometer with lap timer. Skoda Connect Infotainment online includes satellite navigation, traffic reports and calendar updates. Drivers can sync their contacts from the phone to the car, which can be accessed via the steering wheel controls or voice. The Air Care Climatronic system will remove dust and pollen.
The Kodiaq is powered by a twin turbocharged 2.0 TDI engine with an output of 240PS, standard four-wheel-drive system and seven-speed DSG gearbox and is equipped with Dynamic Chassis Control and progressive steering as standard. I like being able to adjust the dynamic sound booster with a particularly emotive engine note, which may well have been the trigger to inspire the performance freaks. I enjoyed the power of being able to sprint onto a roundabout and overtake safely in the right place. Anything else is for the track.
Whether collecting school friends or business clients, driving through flooded roads or having fun on the racing track, the Skoda Kodiaq is definitely a car for all reasons and for all seasons.
Facts at a glance
Model: Skoda Kodiaq vRS 7 seater 4×4
Price: £43,390 otr
Engine: 2 litre diesel 240PS DSG
Performance: 0-62mph in 7 seconds and on to a top speed of 136mph
Combined fuel consumption: 35.3-34.0mpg (WLTP)
CO2 emissions: 167g/km
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