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Standard massive saloons and hatchbacks are waning in recognition at present, with MPVs making a comeback and SUVs ever-popular amongst energetic households. The Citroen C5 and Honda Accord are not supplied within the UK and the Peugeot 508 and Toyota Avensis don’t promote in the identical numbers as their forebears.

Though an SUV or MPV could appear a extra attention-grabbing alternative, vehicles just like the Skoda Octavia supply dependable, sensible household transport. In much-improved Mk2 kind, it was in manufacturing for nearly 10 years, and early examples at the moment are accessible at rock-bottom costs.

With most fashions properly outfitted and fitted with environment friendly, fashionable engines, the Octavia nonetheless has loads of attraction. Our information will assist to discover a Skoda Octavia Mk2 to swimsuit you.

Skoda Octavia historical past

In July 2004, the second era of Skoda Octavia was launched within the UK. A hatchback, regardless of its saloon-like silhouette, it was joined by a commodious property model in February 2005, with four-wheel-drive variations turning into accessible a month later.

The high-performance vRS mannequin was launched in December 2005, powered by a 2.0-litre TFSI petrol engine, adopted in August 2006 by a vRS with the two.0-litre TDI diesel engine. The Octavia Scout 4×4 property, with raised journey peak and rugged appears, was launched on the identical time.

Many of the vary underwent a facelift in January 2009, with inside enhancements and modifications to the entrance and back lights. The earlier 1.6 and a couple of.0-litre FSI engines have been changed by a 1.4-litre TFSI and the Scout and vRS fashions acquired their very own facelift in Could of that yr. In June 2009, an economy-focused GreenLine 1.6-litre TDI diesel was launched and a thrifty 1.2-litre TSI was launched in January 2010.

September 2012 noticed the discharge of two special-edition fashions: the SE Join and the vRS Blackline, which ran till the all-new Mk3 Octavia arrived in March 2013.

Which is the most effective Skoda Octavia mannequin for me?

There are not any actually disappointing Octavia fashions, however we’d keep away from 1.4 and 1.6-litre FSI petrol engines from earlier than the 2009 facelift – the later TSI engines made the Octavia far nicer to drive.

The 1.9-litre TDI is a punchy, economical diesel and in a position to survive very excessive mileages. The extra refined common-rail (CR) diesel engines are far much less ready to deal with neglect, and their service schedules actually have to be saved to. Handbook gearboxes are sturdy, whereas the DSG computerized is terrific in use, however extra susceptible to interrupt down attributable to its added complexity.

Automobiles from the underside of the vary (Traditional and S trim ranges) are quite fundamental – we desire the Ambiente (or SE from 2009 on) for its climate-control air-conditioning, alloy wheels and distant management central locking. Magnificence is essentially the most fascinating trim degree, including cruise management, computerized wipers, rear parking sensors and an routinely dipping inside rear-view mirror.

The earliest, high-mileage Mk2 Octavias can be found for giveaway costs – count on to see loads of 1.9 TDI vehicles with over 150,000 miles on the clock. Diesels outnumber petrols by 5 to at least one, though the latter’s shortage doesn’t make them value any more cash.

When taking a look at vehicles displaying lower than 60,000 miles, count on diesel fashions to promote at a 25% premium over their petrol equivalents. A couple of fifth of all Octavias have been fitted with an computerized gearbox. Estates are essentially the most fascinating of the lot, and the vRS mannequin can range dramatically in worth, relying on upkeep and situation.

Working prices, upkeep and elements

The essential 1.4-litre petrol would be the most cost-effective Mk2 Octavia to insure, because it sits in insurance coverage group 6, eight teams beneath the next-most-affordable, the 1.6-litre TDI diesel. Least economical is the 1.8-litre TSI petrol, returning 38mpg, whereas the 1.6-litre TDI can handle 62mpg. The two.0-litre TDI vRS diesel is the costliest to insure, because it’s in group 28.

Octavias can have been maintained beneath both a set or a variable regime. With the latter, the automobile can have been serviced as soon as each two years or 18,600 miles, whereas the mounted schedule can have seen a minor service every year or 10,000 miles. Companies alternate, with each second workshop go to being for a significant service – this prices about £290, whereas a minor service is £180.

The air-conditioning system fuel must be recharged on a yearly foundation at a price of £90, whereas the brake fluid will want altering each two years at £60. Each Octavia engine has a cambelt that’ll want altering each 4 years and positively earlier than 130,000 miles. It’s an operation that prices about £400, or £500 if the water pump is changed on the identical time, which is advisable.

What to look out for

The Skoda Octavia is as sturdy as household vehicles come. Examples have accrued monumental mileages in taxi service, and if it could possibly deal with that type of punishment, household life can be straightforward. There are some niggling points which must be talked about, although.

Though a comparatively uncommon possibility, the DAB digital radio has been identified undergo from sign drop-out, notably on property fashions. This appears to be a peculiarity of the antenna association.

Stroll away from any automobile with a completely illuminated ABS warning mild on the dashboard – this will level to an ABS management unit failure and repairs can price over £1,000.Dampness within the footwells could have been deposited by the doorways, which might fill with water if left standing for lengthy durations of time. Verify for sloshing noises within the doorways and that electrical home windows and door locks are working appropriately.

The twin-zone climate-control air-con is comparatively refined and could be costly to restore when it fails. Verify the fuel has been recharged recurrently, as this course of additionally introduces a lubricant to the system.

When test-driving an Octavia, don’t fear unduly a couple of low booming sound whereas the automobile is in movement – it’s extra outstanding in some vehicles, however appears to be nothing greater than street noise being carried into the automobile from the suspension.

Lastly, don’t panic if there’s a burning odor from beneath the automobile whenever you swap the engine off. This can be the diesel particulate filter performing its regeneration course of, which can happen infrequently when the filter reaches capability. The odor ought to shortly fade.

Recollects

There have been 4 remembers issued for the second-generation Octavia, with the primary in February 2005 for vehicles constructed between March and August 2004. It was to resolve a possible gasoline leak and solely utilized to TDI diesel-engined vehicles. The same fault was reinvestigated in late 2011 for two.0-litre TDI diesel Octavias constructed from 2009 onwards.

Earlier 2.0-litre TDI handbook vehicles have been recalled in April 2006 attributable to a threat of flywheel failure – solely vehicles constructed between February and June 2005 have been affected. Lastly, in 2009 sure fashions with the DSG computerized gearbox have been recalled as there was a threat of lack of drive.

Alternate options

Although demand for this type of automobile is falling, used patrons are nonetheless hungry for household saloons. Fortuitously, there’s loads of alternative on the market, and the Ford Mondeo and Vauxhall Insignia are apparent, if barely bigger, alternate options.

The Citroen C5 and Renault Laguna could be much more affordably priced than the Octavia, though although each have reliability query marks. To a restricted extent, the identical is true of the Peugeot 407, however its 508 substitute is a much better – if dearer – automobile.

A classy, fun-to-drive alternative is the Mazda6, which can be fairly good worth for cash. The identical goes for the Honda Accord. Neither of those can match the low operating prices of the Octavia, although.

Verdict

It’s pretty exceptional that the Mk2 Skoda Octavia ought to nonetheless rank within the high half of our Driver Energy proprietor satisfaction survey outcomes, regardless of being discontinued over three years in the past. It locations seventieth total out of 150 vehicles within the survey, notably helped by its fourth-place end for practicality. Working prices and efficiency are each extremely praised by house owners, too. Contemplating that the majority Octavia patrons aren’t too fussed a couple of sporty drive, that’s all of the extra spectacular and demonstrates what a succesful all-rounder the Octavia is.

We’ve at all times been keen on the Octavia. The most recent Mk3 upholds the great work of its predecessor and we are able to wholeheartedly suggest a Mk2 as an attractively priced and effortlessly practical household automobile.

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