Skoda has officially revealed the full Octavia vRS engine range after initially revealing the sporty mid-sized hatch and estate earlier this year in plug-in iV form. Launching with the plug-in powertrain is a familiar pair of 2-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol and diesel engines from the previous version, but updated to suit the new model.
The most potent petrol is a 242bhp version of the 2-litre petrol engine also found in the basic Golf GTI and Cupra Leon. This power figure matches that of the plug-in, but differs in one way by being available with either a six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. Although all-wheel drive is also optional on overseas models, UK availability is yet to be confirmed.
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A 197bhp diesel variant will also be available, again in front-wheel-drive form, or all-wheel-drive, but only when fitted with a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.
The plug-in powertrain is one that’s become increasingly familiar – recently revealed Volkswagen Golf GTE, Cupra Leon PHEV, Cupra Formentor… the list goes on. As with those models, power is generated by a 1.4-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine and electric motor, that together produce a peak of 242bhp and 295lb ft of torque.
The combined combustion and electric power is then sent to the front wheels via a six-speed dual-clutch transmission, and will goad the Octavia vRS to 62mph in a somewhat pedestrian 7.3sec. This powertrain option is a response to those who want the vRS look and feel, without the associated running costs of a ‘real’ vRS, but then the same could be said of the diesel vRS models that precede it.
Still, the Octavia vRS’s desirable combination of a larger, more practical body shape, now matched to Skoda’s sharp design language, should still appeal, especially with a few vRS design tweaks applied. These include more aggressive lower bumpers front and rear, both featuring the now vRS staple of small horizontal LED fog lights and a full-width rear reflector between two trapezoidal exhaust outlets.
The interior has been given a similar treatment, full of Alcantara and perforated leather surfaces, subtle silver contrasting stitching and quilting on the sports seats. The interior is otherwise identical to that of the standard Octavia, which is no bad thing, as it adopts the latest infotainment hardware from the new Golf and Leon.
UK specifics have yet to be revealed, but expect the vRS to be available mid-year in the UK for around £32,000.