Why would I buy it?
- Comfort and legroom
- Driving pleasure
Why would I avoid it?
- Ground clearance
- Lacks features as compared to the L&K variant
Engine and Performance
The Superb facelift gets a 190bhp/320Nm 2.0-litre TSI petrol engine instead of the earlier 1.8-litre mill and with it all the technological goodies that help boost performance for the better. Excitingly, this motor only comes with one transmission option; our favourite DSG, with seven cogs! To begin with, this mill offers an impressive 70Nm jump over the previous engine, and we noticed that it feels supremely refined while lumbering about aimlessly at city speeds. Predictably, the DSG gearbox is delightfully calibrated to the motor, thereby bringing about scintillating responses even with a light dab on the accelerator.
You never ever have to ogle at another rick or truck’s backside! And when out on the highways, it’s more like ‘who let the dogs out?’ since the throttle response becomes alive and even more joyous. But you just can’t back off in a Skoda; if you know what the wicked me means. Flooring the throttle feels more like I’m shot out of a catapult into the fine edges of the tarmac on the horizon. And as if there wasn’t already enough on my plate, the engine lets out an angry note while the tachometer swings feverishly to the 6,000rpm redline. Quite the spectacle that gets one high, ahem …
Ride Quality and Handling
A few minutes at the wheel is all that’s required to get one thing straight; the Superb was crafted to haul passengers in thorough comfort. The rather absorbent nature of the suspension means most road irregularities are dealt with without the occupants feeling much. Plus, we had no issues with the Superb clearing any of the speed breakers; even of the monster kind.
But of course, the other side of the soft suspension’s story is that there is some body roll and movement when going feverishly around the tight corners. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like you can land up on a tree after pushing it on a bend. Just keep the enthusiasm in check and the Superb will mask the limousine dimensions quite well.
Comfort, Convenience, and Features
What we have here is the SportLine trim that gets dark sporty interiors whose rich quality, sublime fit and finish, and gorgeous choice of materials will leave one spellbound. This one also gets the flat-bottom steering wheel which gels well with the rest of the dash. As for the front seats, not only are they of the sportier kind due to the body-hugging stature, they ooze of comfort owing to the quality of bolstering and intense support offered. And with as many as 12 levels of electric adjustments, finding a sweet driving posture is far from a chore.
As regards Superb’s rear seats, legroom is simply phenomenal; considering the limousine dimensions. What’s more, there’s ample space for two occupants, but a third one could struggle with the hard centre backrest and a high transmission tunnel. That aside, the Superb benefits from a massive 625-litre boot that can swallow almost everything, and when the need arises, folding the second row liberates enough room for two to spend a night out under the stars. How romantic!
When it comes to features, this Skoda SportLine is loaded to the nose. You get a customisable digital instrument cluster that looks gorgeous, an eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system that sounds and feels great, there’s keyless entry, a three-zone climate control system, adjustable ambient lighting, panorama sunroof, powered tailgate, and more.
The SportLine spec comes with eight airbags, ABS with EBD, electronic stability control, mechanical brake assist, multi-collision brake, hill brake assist, and hill hold control. There’s also an electromechanical parking brake with auto hold, anti-slip regulation, electronic differential lock, and front/rear parking sensors with a camera. Phew!
This new facelifted Superb in its electric blue shade snatches your undivided attention no matter what. Emotions begin to overflow as your eyes ponder over the razor-sharp new LED headlamps that threaten to slice you if gazed upon inappropriately. Even the all-black grille has been reworked along with the larger air dams and new LED fog lamps. In profile, there are just the restyled alloys, but the rear portion uses refreshed taillights with the Skoda badge running in between. If this is beauty, I’m the beast for sure!
This Skoda Superb SportLine is priced at Rs 38.03 lakh (OTR Mumbai). And I don’t have to tell you that for this much dough, you might as well pick up a Toyota Fortuner or the Ford Endeavour. Only because today’s demand tilts towards SUVs. But there are still a bunch of buyers out there who are specifically looking for a capable sedan. One that’s stunning to look at, is comfortable, decidedly spacious, intensely powerful, and more or less dynamically sorted. Well, it has to be a Superb choice; what say, Skoda?
Pictures by Kaustubh Gandhi