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Skoda aces Octavia crash test

Five of the best: The Skoda Octavia's top five-star crash rating is an improvement over the outgoing model's four-star effort.

Skoda's third-gen mid-sizer scores top ANCAP rating as pricing leaks early

General News logo26 Nov 2013

SKODA has boosted the safety credentials of its third-generation Octavia range with a five-star ANCAP crash rating, just as pricing and powertrain details surface earlier than expected.

The top marks for the Octavia – the previous generation only earned a four-star result – lifts the Volkswagen Group-owned brand's five star-rated models to four, adding to the high scores for the current Superb sedan and wagon, Yeti compact SUV and the Roomster tall-boy hatch range.

The aging Fabia hatch remains as the sole four-star offering in the Czech brand's Australian line-up.

The Octavia received an overall score of 35.87 out of a possible 37 in the test, originally conducted by Euro NCAP and adjusted for the Australian-delivered front-wheel-drive version. The new Octavia is fitted with seven airbags, including head-protecting side curtain airbags, and a driver’s knee airbag for the first time.

It scored the maximum 16 points for the side impact test and the two-point maximum for the pole test.

For the frontal offset test, the Octavia just missed out on a perfect score, with driver leg protection listed as “acceptable” while all other body regions scored a “good”.

Overall pedestrian protection was “good” or “adequate”, but ANCAP described protection of the pedestrian's pelvic area as “marginal” or “poor”.

ANCAP chairman Lauchlan McIntosh praised Skoda for its overall five-star result and the inclusion of active safety features, but highlighted the fact that these features were not standard on the base variant.

“… The inclusion of active safety assist technologies which can help prevent or minimize the impact of a crash is vital if we are to further reduce the number of lives lost on our roads,” Mr McIntosh said.

“Autonomous emergency braking, lane support systems and adaptive lighting are examples of the technologies consumers should be urging manufacturers to offer as standard in all new makes and models.” Earlier today, details of the Octavia's pricing were made available on Skoda's Australian website, well ahead of its official release at noon tomorrow. The page has since been taken down.

Pricing kicks off from a competitive $21,690 plus on-road costs for the base 103TSI manual sedan, a $3300 drop from the previous entry-level variant - the 90TSI - that was priced from $24,990 before on-road costs.

Pricing tops out at $35,490 for the Elegence 110TDI diesel, while buyers pay an additional $1350 if they want a wagon body-style.

The Octavia range features a number of turbocharged powertrains, including a 103kW/250Nm 1.4-litre four-cylinder petrol unit, a 132kW/250Nm 1.8-litre petrol, and a 110kW/320Nm 2.0-litre four-cylinder diesel – the only oil-burner in the line-up.

Transmission choices include a six-speed manual, or a six- or seven-speed dual-clutch automatic, depending on the variant.

The information on the website also confirmed that Skoda will follow its Volkswagen sister company in introducing capped-price servicing for the first six years or 90,000km.

The Octavia’s other safety features include electronic stability control, emergency brake assist, automatic headlights, seatbelt reminders and anti-lock brakes, while autonomous braking, adaptive cruise control and a fatigue monitor are believed to be available on higher-spec variants.

Built on Volkswagen's MQB platform that underpins the Mk7 Golf and Audi A3, the new Octavia is 90mm longer and 45mm wider than the outgoing model, making it a true mid-size offering for the first time.

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