Skoda has played it safe with the new Octavia, shunning a radical new design in favour of a look that borrows heavily from its big brother, the Superb.
‘I’m not worried about this car being too conservative,’ Skoda styling boss Thomas Ingenlath told Autocar. ‘Yes it has a lot of cues that make reference to our design language, but it is very much our strategy to develop that and make it recognisable. I would be nervous if we had gone too avant garde, I didn’t feel we had to break new ground.’
The main priorities for the new Octavia were superior quality, comfort, space, functionality and technology, and much effort has been put into lifting the perceived cabin quality with the use of more expensive materials than in the outgoing model.
‘It is important to get the interior you expect when you look at the outside,’ said Ingenlath. ‘That’s not necessarily something that happened with the old Octavia.’
Although based on the same platform as the VW Golf/Audi A3/Seat Altea, Skoda claims to have stamped its own mark on the driving experience. The multi-link independent rear suspension has been tuned for ride comfort over sporty handling.