In-depth reviews

Skoda Scala review - Interior, design and technology

It’s not the most exciting car to look at or travel in, but practicality and quality have been given top priority

Overall Auto Express Rating

5.0 out of 5

Interior, design and technology Rating

4.5 out of 5

Price
£22,075 to £30,425
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Form has followed function in most aspects of the Skoda Scala’s design – it’s a large hatchback for the class that doesn’t skimp on interior space by using a sloping roofline. The exterior looks sharp and modern, but rivals like the Mazda 3 do highlight its relative plainness. This could be construed as a good thing, though – it’s an unpretentious car that doesn’t try to stand out.

Inside, the sensible no-frills approach continues with a fairly drab dashboard that’s functional rather than pleasing to the eye. Everything is very well put together and the materials used are of good quality, with lots of soft-touch plastics in all the right places – it easily stands up to the Kia Ceed and Ford Focus' cabins, but it does lack the more premium feel you get with the Volkswagen Golf.

It’s easy to find an acceptable driving position in the comfortable seats and the cabin’s ergonomics are easy to get to grips with very quickly. Much like the rest of the Scala’s agreeable traits, this further helps its case as a no-fuss, easy-to-own family car.

Sat-nav, stereo and infotainment

The basic Scala S (now discontinued) features a basic 6.5-inch colour display, Bluetooth, a DAB radio and a couple of USB-C ports in the centre console. Upgrading to SE trim adds an eight-inch touchscreen, plus Skoda's Smartlink system for connecting to Apple or Android smartphones. SE L and Monte Carlo-spec cars go even further with a larger 9.2-inch screen, built-in sat-nav and a 10.25-inch Virtual Cockpit digital instrument cluster as well.

Skoda's infotainment system uses a neat user interface and we found the touchscreen was quick to respond to our commands, so overall it’s good to use, plus the smartphone integration works well. The screen is sharp and looks modern, but we would prefer some more physical buttons to access menus more easily. At least the air-conditioning controls are all physical buttons and dials, which you'll find below the central touchscreen.

Which Is Best

Cheapest

  • Name
    1.0 TSI S 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £17,225

Most Economical

  • Name
    1.0 TSI S 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £17,225

Fastest

  • Name
    1.5 TSI SE Technology 5dr DSG
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £24,205
News reporter

As our news reporter, Ellis is responsible for covering everything new and exciting in the motoring world, from quirky quadricycles to luxury MPVs. He was previously the content editor for DrivingElectric and won the Newspress Automotive Journalist Rising Star award in 2022.

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