Thursday 30 March 2017

Review: Skoda Kodiaq 2.0 TSI 180 DSG SE L

Skoda Kodiaq 2.0 TSI 180 DSG SE L

Buyers are in a bit of a strange place at the moment. On the one hand they’re told that petrol guzzlers are a very bad thing, and they’ll duly pay lots of tax on the vehicle and spend lots of money on petrol, but on the other hand we have a rising groundswell of opposition, both official and otherwise, to the polluting ways of diesel. What to do?

Well, if you’ve decided the future is not diesel, and who can blame you, then this 2.0-litre TSI engine could well fit the bill. It pulls cleanly and, as the figures show, it’s got some low grunt to help those more used to diesel torque. It pulls well from low and then keeps pulling well as you head up the rev range. It’s smoother than a diesel alternative and quieter too, more civilised.

Skoda Kodiaq 2.0 TSI 180 DSG SE L

The shame is that the DSG auto box seems to be a bit slower to keep up. Which is where playing with the options shows up that sometimes standard is best. Put the driving mode into Sport and the gearbox wakes up, but then the steering gets too heavy and the optional adaptive dampers get a bit fidgety and over-excited. Row it back to Comfort and some sense of calm is restored, but the vehicle feels like it’s floating a bit.

Best leave it with standard dampers in standard Normal mode and you’ll have a pretty acceptable handling and ride package. Actually, considering this is a big vehicle with relatively high centre of gravity, you won’t be disappointed by the way it handles on the road.

Skoda Kodiaq 2.0 TSI 180 DSG SE L

And it is large, something you’ll be reminded of the moment you step up into the cabin. You can have five or seven seats specified, and there’s certainly room for a third row. The front pair of seats get plenty of room and comfort, and the same goes for the second row, where the seat row can slide to and fro and also has an adjustable backrest.

Behind that is either the third row of seats, which are a decent size, or a huge luggage area. Even with the third row, folded flat, you’ll be able to accommodate even a diva’s luggage requirement. This is Land Rover Discovery Sport big, which is impressive.

The cabin has plenty of stowage and storage areas, and it’s a clever, practical and classy place to be. If you want the full seven seats then you can’t have S trim, but they are options on SE and standard on SE L, such as we’re trying here.

Skoda Kodiaq 2.0 TSI 180 DSG SE L

Naturally that pushes the price up and some might find the bill of over £30k to be heading a bit high. But SE trim gives you most of what you need and you could still specify the third row of seats. And of course you could always go for a cheaper petrol engine too.

The 1.4-litre 148bhp TSI can still make a pretty good fist of powering this Kodiaq, yet it will prove more economical and be cheaper on tax than this 2.0-litre version. If you see the future as petrol then that might make a better power source.

Whichever you choose, you’ll be buying a high-quality SUV from Skoda that is proving so popular that the model has a three-month UK waiting list already. It looks like if you buy a Kodiaq you’ll be in good company.

Skoda Kodiaq 2.0 TSI 180 DSG SE L

Price £30,410
Engine 4 cyls, 1984cc, turbocharged, petrol
Power 178bhp at 3900-6000rpm
Torque 236lb ft at 1400-3940rpm
Gearbox 7-spd automatic
Kerb weight 1840kg
Top speed 127mph
0-62mph 8.2sec
Economy 38.2mpg (combined)
CO2/tax band 170g/km/31%



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