Testing the supersized Skoda Superb wagon
Back in the early days of Skoda under the Volkswagen Group in the 1990s, there was such desperation to improve the Czech brand by bringing it into the family, shared-platform models shared a bit too much. Similar-size Skoda and VW vehicles looked and felt too similar.
Not a terrible situation for a cheaper brand, but not ideal overall. Things have improved rapidly over the last decade, with VW and Skoda continuing to share as much as possible, but managing to use those common ingredients to create very different flavours.
Our Superb 2.0 TSI is the flagship of the range, a surprisingly swift wagon powered by a detuned 206kW version of the VW Golf R engine. It’s 4x4 as well. VW has a version of the Passat wagon with exactly the same powertrain: the TSI R-Line.
Straight away, the Skoda looks pretty good. It’s a slightly larger car (89mm longer, 33 litres more luggage) and is $5500 cheaper than its VW equivalent. They share good stuff like adaptive cruise, lane departure warning, drive-mode selection with adaptive chassis control, three-zone climate air, keyless entry/start with power tailgate, full leather upholstery and satellite navigation.
Interior nicely finished, well equipped - but a bit ordinary.