RELAUNCH OF A BESTSELLER: THE NEW OCTAVIA | AutoUnleashed PR Section

RELAUNCH OF A BESTSELLER: THE NEW OCTAVIA

Although the current version of the bestselling Octavia has been extensively revised, designers and engineers have not lost sight of the roots and traditions of the Škoda company, one of the oldest brands in the car industry. The Octavia carries a great deal of heritage and marks a particularly significant moment in the brand’s history.

Designers and engineers have approached the Octavia facelift with great care and attention to detail. As well as undergoing a number of technical improvements, the design of the Octavia has been fundamentally revised. The Octavia of 2009 will have a distinctive new quality, both in a hatch and estate form, and a clearly altered character.

The latest transformation has been achieved through a number of comprehensive changes that go well beyond simple “soft” touches. Unlike conventional facelifts, the Octavia has had its steel body panels changed and new pressing tools created. The front grille with 19 vertical ribs is wrapped by a newly designed chrome frame. Altered front bumpers look more dynamic and sleek, leaving their mark on the entire front end.

The new headlamps, which can be equipped with optional xenon lights and swivelling modules for the adaptive light function, are significantly larger and more dominant than on the current Octavia, giving the car a more emphatic presence. A pronounced line runs from the Škoda logo in the chrome clasp to the grille. As it widens towards the windscreen and ends in the centre console of the passenger compartment, it breaks up the surface of the bonnet and gives the Octavia a dynamic front.

Front fog lights sit underneath a redesigned front bumper which has a more distinct horizontal alignment. For the first time the lights have been equipped with a daytime and cornering light function. This is therefore not just an optical upgrade but a significant safety improvement. The same applies to the new folding door mirrors which feature indicators that can be seen from all directions by other road users. The mirrors are electrically adjustable and heated even on the entry trim level Classic. New rear lights in a traditional C shape complete the optical renewal of the Octavia’s exterior. The C, which can be seen when driving in the dark, has become the hallmark of Škoda vehicles. Additional reflectors have been integrated into the rear bumper so that a parked Octavia is noticed easily by passing drivers.

Inspired by the New Superb, which had its debut in spring, the Octavia facelift is a fresh and elegant car.

Five petrol and three diesel engines make up the power unit range of the renewed Octavia. A new 1.4 TSI engine which delivers 90 kW (122 bhp) and reaches a maximum torque of 200 Nm from 1500 to 4000 rpm, has been added to the current range. It gives the New Octavia a maximum speed of 203 km/h (126 mph) and the acceleration of 9.7 seconds from 0 to 100 km/h (62mph). At the same time this small but powerful power unit is frugal with combined consumption figure of 6.6 litres per 100 km (42 mpg) and CO2 emissions of 154 g/km. A particular highlight of the new 1.4 TSI engine is that it is available with the seven speed DSG gearbox on request.

The improved 1.8 TSI petrol engine with a performance of 118 kW (160 bhp) will in the future come with a sophisticated automatic seven speed DSG gearbox. It is also available on the Scout and other 4×4 vehicles with a six speed manual gearbox.

New Octavia customers can choose from the following engines:

Petrol:  1.4 MPI 59 kW (80 bhp), CO2emissions 167 g/km  1.6 MPI 75 kW (102 bhp), CO2 emissions 176 g/km  1.4 TSI 90 kW (122 bhp), CO2 emissions 154 g/km  1.8 TSI 118 kW (160 bhp), CO2emissions 163 g/km

 2.0 TSI 147 kW (200 bhp), CO2 emissions 175 g/km – RS (VRS)

Diesel:  1.9 TDI PD 77 kW (105 bhp), CO2 emissions 130 g/km  2.0 TDI PD 103 kW (140 bhp), CO2 emissions 145 g/km

 2.0 TDI CR DPF 125 kW (170 bhp), CO2 emissions 150 g/km – RS (VRS)

New audio navigation systems have been incorporated into the centre console to meet customers’ different price and performance preferences. The basic equipment is the 1-DIN radio Blues with a CD MP3 player. Customers can opt for the 2-DIN audio system Swing with an integrated MP3 CD player. The most advanced Bolero audio system offers a user-friendly, touch-sensitive screen. The same functions are included in the Amundsen infotainment system equipped with a big screen to ensure flawless guidance. The top range model is the combined Columbus radio navigation system with a 30 GB hard disc space. Like Bolero and Amundsen, this system is operated with self-explanatory touchscreen technology. A brand new optional hands-free device has been integrated into the infotainment system. New microphone technology, used in this system, has significantly improved voice quality, making communication more easily understood even at high speeds.

Škoda audio systems are already compatible with external data storage devices via an aux in socket. Furtermore, functions of external media such as MP3 players, iPods or USB sticks can be connected to the entertainment system via the MDI devise (media device interface). Information from the devices is clearly displayed on the screen of the system ensuring simpler and safer operation.
New materials and functional features have increased comfort and operating safety in the passenger compartment of the Octavia facelift. New-look instruments with clear white scales have a prominent position on the dashboard. The multi-function display between the speedometer and the rev counter shows information of the on-board computer and, if equipped with a tyre pressure monitor, indicates any pressure loss. The knobs of the air conditioning systems Climatic and Climate control can be easily adjusted while heated front seats controls have also been integrated into this area.

The seats have also been redesigned. The middle section of the seat covers in the Classic, Ambiente and Elegance trims have a fresh pattern which matches the rest of the interior. Parts of the centre console, such as the ashtray lid and the frame of the gear lever mounting, are kept in the same decor as door and dashboard trim strips. One exception to this rule is the New Octavia Classic which lacks air conditioning. The Octavia Elegance comes with a new decor as standard and can be customised with alternative interior trims to enhance the refined feel of the passenger compartment.

An armrest in the centre of the rear seat now comes with a storage compartment. Rear passengers can now find optional heated seat buttons on the rear of the front armrest. A new net on the centre console of the passenger side provides even more storage options and the optional cool box keeps drinks chilled. The Jumbo Box under the arm rest between the two front seats has a cooling function powered by air conditioning. A new module for interior lighting with two reading lamps guarantees excellent lighting conditions in the back.

Passengers sitting in the rear seats of the New Octavia can enjoy great comfort and space, the most generous in this vehicle class. Large doors make it easier to get in and out of the car. The tailgate of the New Octavia Hatch makes storing luggage in the boot easy. With a capacity of 560 litres, it sets a benchmark for volume in its class. Folding down the rear bench extends the volume to a remarkable 1420 litres, a capacity which expands to 1620 litres on the New Octavia Estate.

The new look Octavia Estate has lost none of its user-friendly load carrier virtues. Its tailgate opens wide providing a large boot opening. A light tap of the luggage cover retracts it to facilitate loading.

The new-look Octavia shows self-assurance and character. The new front end, enlarged wing mirrors, a clearly structured rear and new lights harmoniously round off the car, lending it a more up-to-date appearance. Its looks can be further enhanced by a host of innovative equipment details such as five new alloy wheels, a new wheel trim and two new paint colours, all of which ensure a high level of customisation. The latest generation ABS system has been fitted for ultimate safety and head restraints have been replaced with a new, even more effective protection system – whiplash optimised head restraints (WOKS).

On request the upgraded Octavia can be equipped with a new parking pilot system. The electronic distance warning system is furnished with high-quality, fifth generation sensors. Two speakers produce different warning sounds when the distance at the front or at the rear becomes too tight, improving special awareness. The New Octavia also has the same new immobiliser as the new Superb helping protect the car against theft.

Alloy wheels in new shapes, steering wheels matching the new passenger compartment and attractive new paint colours complete the model upgrade of the Octavia.

Important new equipment:

 New Bolero radio and RNS Amundsen have a TouchScreen colour monitor and other features  MDI (Media Device interface) – a new connection for iPod, AUX or USB with display on the Maxi DOT screen  High-tech hands-free Bluetooth device (GSM III Premium)  New WOKS head restraints on the front seats with improved backrests standard on all Octavias have replaced the original active head restraints, which were previously only available as an option.  5th generation parking sensors – better optical display on the screen and new sound signals for better perception.  4th generation immobiliser – better protection identical to the system in the new Superb.

 4th generation Haldex clutch in the Octavia Estate 4×4 and Scout

Upgrading the hugely successful Octavia series was a particular challenge for the designers and engineers in the development centre of Škoda Auto in the Czech town of Mladá Boleslav. Everybody with a deep commitment to this task understood Škoda’s historic connection with the series. The Octavia name was first used by the manufacturer in late 1950s and symbolised the innovative power of a brand whose beginnings go back to 1895. The early Octavia was a reliable, solid and inexpensive automobile which introduced modern technology to a vehicle segment which at the time was characterised by simple, often inadequate technical solutions. The Octavia was popular then and is popular now and is the brand’s consistent bestseller.

When Škoda Auto joined the VW Group in the early nineties, the Octavia series was the first car developed independently of the state. Its debut marked an exciting period for a company which was suddenly no longer part of the Eastern Bloc. Škoda was suddenly able to compete on the international car market and the Octavia took manufacturers from Western Europe, Asia and Korea head-on. This stepping stone for the brand is comparable with the Czech Republic joining the EU and has enabled this innovative and aspiring brand to become a fully fledged partner in one of the leading automobile groups in the world.

The car’s debut was a proud moment for the brand which, just like its country during the Velvet Revolution, fought tyranny and successfully returned to free market economy. The Octavia’s shape was spectacular, experts called it a “democratisation of the design“. Its body structure, technical details and interior design met the highest vehicle requirements at the time. The first generation Octavia re-injected a creative force and passion into the Škoda brand and the latest version of the Octavia will carry this heritage with great self-confidence.