Skip advert
Advertisement

Skoda Octavia (2013 - 2020) review - Interior, design and technology

Restrained and sensible styling wraps up a full house of technology options

Overall Auto Express Rating

4.0 out of 5

Interior, design and technology Rating

4.5 out of 5

Price
£26,745 to £36,465
Find your Skoda Octavia
Offers from our trusted partners on this car and its predecessors...
Or are you looking to sell your car?
Customers got an average £1000 more vs part exchange quotes
Advertisement

The Octavia isn’t going to win any beauty contests, but the Skoda’s upright lines and straight edges are handsome and well defined. The nose features a rectangular main grille and headlights, while the second grille under the bumper stretches the full width of the front end. This makes the Octavia look wide and low.

Advertisement - Article continues below

From the side, the Skoda looks long, while the rear windscreen’s shallow angle and the lengthy rear overhang are saloon-like. As standard, the Octavia doesn’t look particularly racy, and inside, the Skoda is restrained and sensible, with a conventional dashboard and centre console layout. The dash features a lot of dark grey plastic, and some of it has a hard finish, but the silver trim around the gearlever and the gloss black trim on the centre console and steering wheel give the cabin a lift.

This means it doesn’t feel like a dreary place in which to spend time. The dials and trip computer are simple to read, while the touchscreen sat-nav is a breeze to use, with a logical layout and straightforward controls allowing you to input destinations with ease. The optional 9.2-inch ‘Columbus’ touchscreen display is better still, but does away with too many buttons. We'd prefer to keep as much functionality as possible accessible via a button rather than a touchscreen.

Elsewhere, there’s dark grey cloth upholstery and more dark grey plastic throughout. However, this is countered by a light grey roof lining, which helps the Octavia’s cabin feel more spacious. Overall, the Skoda is functional rather than flashy, but it’s arguably all the better for it, while build quality is excellent.

Advertisement - Article continues below
Skip advert
Advertisement
Skip advert
Advertisement - Article continues below

Skoda offers the Octavia in a range of trim levels, which are available in either a hatch or estate body style. Mainstream models are the entry level S, mid-range SE and SE Drive, while SE L, SportLine and the hot Skoda Octavia vRS offer more kit and performance.

Skoda's reputation for good value is well deserved and standard equipment on the Octavia is excellent, with alloy wheels, DAB radio, a touchscreen system and Bluetooth connectivity all coming as standard on the entry-level S model.

The racy Skoda Octavia vRS adopts a sporty appearance, with a boot spoiler, 18-inch alloy wheels, a red strip across the rear bumper and a more aggressive bodykit. It’s also available in a bright range of colours. The interior of the Skoda Octavia vRS is also given some much needed flair thanks to sports seats, which are available in black and white alcantara, aluminium dash-inlays, aluminium pedals and a sports steering wheel. 

Sat-nav, stereo and infotainment

The infotainment systems on the Octavia are bang up to date, with full connectivity, touch screens with motion sensors that call up menus, and the option of advanced navigation systems offering intuitive controls and clear mapping. However, for an extra £450, customers may want to upgrade the standard instrument dials to Skoda's Virtual Cockpit, which includes a 10.25-inch digital display. 

You can connect your smartphone using MirrorLink, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto interfaces, while SmartGate tech allows you to send vehicle driving and performance data to a connected device.

There’s a decent 8-speaker sound system as standard, but you can also upgrade to a Canton system for around £500, which adds a central dash speaker and a boot-mounted sub-woofer.

Skip advert
Advertisement

Which Is Best

Cheapest

  • Name
    1.0 TSI SE 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £23,665

Most Economical

  • Name
    1.4 TSI iV SE Technology DSG 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £33,395

Fastest

  • Name
    2.0 TSI vRS 5dr DSG
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £35,245
Skip advert
Advertisement

Most Popular

Mercedes says ‘no thank you’ to EQ: EV brand to be axed
Mercedes-AMG EQS 53 - EQS badge
News

Mercedes says ‘no thank you’ to EQ: EV brand to be axed

Mercedes will roll back EQ branding for its electric cars as the first generation of EV models reaches the end of its lifecycle.
15 May 2024
UK faces “epidemic” of young uninsured drivers
Car crash
News

UK faces “epidemic” of young uninsured drivers

The number of young people convicted of driving without insurance has tripled since 2021, due to sky-rocketing premiums
17 May 2024
Skoda Scala vs Citroen C4 2024 twin test: which is the best-value family hatchback?
Skoda Scala and Citroen C4 - front tracking
Car group tests

Skoda Scala vs Citroen C4 2024 twin test: which is the best-value family hatchback?

The revised Skoda Scala takes on Citroen’s C4 in the battle to be the best-value family hatchback
18 May 2024