The History Of Skoda Octavia

For the car produced between 1959-1971 also known as Škoda Octavia, see Škoda Octavia (1959-1971).

The Škoda Octavia is a small family car produced by Czech automaker Škoda Auto since 1996, its name revived from a model originally produced between 1959 and 1971. The current Octavia is available in five-door liftback and estate body styles. A common misconception is that the Octavia is a saloon due to its long boot. However in some markets (such as China) the Octavia is configured as a saloon.

The first generation Octavia was released in 1996 and was built on the Volkswagen Group A4 (PQ34) platform.

United Kingdom sales began in 1998 and the car was an instant success with buyers who appreciated its solidity, refinement and value for money, though it could not quite match the success of established favourites such as the Ford Mondeo, Opel Vectra and Peugeot 406.[citation needed] The car became synonymous with the U.K taxi trade, due the large number of private hire drivers who used the vehicle due to its low price, space and reliability.

The first generation Octavia had a facelift in 2000 and is still manufactured and marketed in some markets, even though the second generation was introduced in 2004. In Germany, and other parts of West Europe, as well as Asia, the older model is marketed as the Octavia Tour, while the newer model is marketed as the Octavia. In some markets, the first-generation Octavia is still known as Octavia, and the newer model is referred to as the new Octavia, Octavia5 (Greece) or Laura (India). The major improvements in the new model are the independent rear suspension and improved interior (in space, design and quality of materials).

The original Octavia also featured a 4x4 wheel drive version both for liftback and estate models, the former being more popoular, and was using the Haldex Traction clutch just as every other Volkswagen Group A Platform based car (Golf IV, Audi A3 and Seat Leon Cupra R4). It had higher ground clearance and a bigger fuel tank - 63-litre (17US gal; 14imp gal) compared to 55L (15US gal; 12impgal) standard front wheel drive versions. The 4x4 option was only available for 1.8T 150bhp (112kW; 152PS) petrol engine, the 1.9TDI 90bhp (67kW; 91PS) both coupled with 5-speed manual gearbox and the 1.9TDI-PD(Pumpe-duse) 100bhp (75kW; 101PS) version which came with 6-speed manual gearbox.

The other 6-speed model was the 1.9TDI-PD 131bhp (98kW; 133PS) only available with front wheel drive.

The vRS, being the top-level and quickest specification, is a 1.8-litre turbocharged engine which produces 180bhp (134kW; 182PS), similar to the Audi TT's first engine. Skoda made a limited number of 100 WRC Replica Cars worldwide in 2002, these differ from normal vRS Octavias, as they are produced in white, have rally decals and have additional accessories as standard (such as ESP, xenon lights, heated front seats).


The engines used are the same as for many other cars in the Volkswagen Group.

The second generation was introduced in 2004 based on the Volkswagen Group A5 (PQ35) platform also used by other Volkswagen Group cars, including the Audi A3 II, VW Golf Mk5, VW Jetta Mk5, SEAT León II, SEAT Altea, VW Golf Plus, VW Touran and VW Tiguan. Along with a new engine range, also shared with other models of the Volkswagen Group, body changes included more legroom for rear seat passengers (a weak point in the original model) and increased ground clearance at front and rear to reduce the risk of grounding on steep ramps or facing kerbs.

In India, the second-generation Octavia is marketed as the Laura to distinguish it from the first generation.

An off-road version of the Octavia was announced in the third quarter of 2006 under the name Octavia Scout. Only available with the estate body style, the Octavia Scout features a Haldex Traction four-wheel drive, which is based on a computer-controlled clutch centre coupling. The Octavia 4x4 offers 24mm (0.9in) higher ground clearance than standard versions. The Scout model offers an additional 16mm (0.6in) for a total 40mm (1.6in) higher ground clearance than the standard versions.


There are several engine options available:

Trim levels

In the UK the Octavia is available in these trim levels: Classic, Ambiente, 4x4 (Estate only), Elegance, Laurin & Klement, Scout 4x4 (Estate only), and vRS. All models come with 4 airbags, electric front windows, air conditioning, central locking and Anti-Lock Brakes.

Facelift 2009

Skoda formally unveiled the facelifted Octavia at the 2008 Paris Motor Show. The faelift has a large number of improvements.

Photos of the facelifted model can be viewed at the Skoda International website: com/ model/ newoctavia/ gallery/ pictures/ Pages/ gallery.aspx?pageIndex=1

The German automobile TV show Auto, Motor und Sport compared the Škoda Octavia with its cousin, the Volkswagen Golf Mk5 and concluded that the Škoda Octavia was slightly better than the Volkswagen Golf owing to a little more interior space and other specific ergonomics, better build quality, better driveability and a lower price.

The British automobile magazine and TV/ radio show Top Gear in their 2006 survey placed the first generation Octavia into 3rd place and was described as a "masterpiece of dependability". The second generation was too new to be included in the survey.

The British automobile magazine Auto Express awarded to the second generation Octavia the gold medal in their prestigious Driver Power top 100, stating that it is "the UK'’s most satisfying car to own in 2007" and that it "has bettered every other car on sale in the UK".

Along with other Škodas, the Czech-built Octavia has been a markedly reliable vehicle, more so than the Audi A3 and Volkswagen Golf with which it shares platforms. In 2006 Warranty Direct, a UK-based provider of mechanical warranties for used cars, rated Škoda the top manufacturer (above Mazda and Honda), while Audi came seventh from bottom. The Octavia specifically had a reliability index of 32.74 (lower being more reliable) while the Golf produced over the same period was 87.28 and the Audi A3 99.43.

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