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2020 Skoda Octavia vRS spied with sharp new look

All-new Octavia vRS to join the standard range next year with updated powertrains

The all-new Skoda Octavia is due later this year in both hatchback and estate variants, but this is our first look at the hot vRS model, spotted flaunting a few key visual cues to suggest its sporting intent. 

The standard Octavia is expected to be revealed within a few months, but it’s this vRS model that is of most interest to us, as it typically shares its underlying powertrain and chassis upgrades with a Volkswagen Golf GTI – in this case the brand new eighth-generation GTI that’s due next year.

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This new Octavia, like the next Golf, SEAT Leon and Audi A3, will be based on a heavily updated version of the MQB platform that has since proliferated around the entire Volkswagen Group. The updates to the platform will largely be focused on further integration of electrified (but not full electric) powertrains and updates to interior tech.

Speculation is still swirling in regards to what will be found under the bonnet of the next Octavia vRS, but we expect it will hold on to its current 2-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine, likely being split once again into two states of tune, this time in the regions of 240bhp and 270bhp – both being 30bhp gains on the current models. 

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Both six-speed manual and dual-clutch transmissions are likely to be offered, the latter controlled via a new push-button gear selector. The interior will likely harbour the biggest change, with a heavy emphasis on digitisation via larger touchscreen interfaces and a high set but largely minimalist dash layout. 

Outside, the new Octavia will lose its controversial split headlights, instead returning to one unit, a slim LED item that will join the larger, wider grille. The prototype in these images portrays its vRS status with a more aggressive lower clip and secondary LED fog-lights mounted on top of the outer intakes. 

The overall shape is more crisp and rakish than the current model’s, too, with sharper lines, a heavily raked rear screen and sharp lighting units, all core design trends currently being applied throughout Skoda’s expanding range. With the standard Octavia to be revealed later this year, we suspect the vRS will follow soon after, before reaching the UK some time in 2020. 

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