producing cars that challenged more illustriously-badged
rivals for affordability, high levels of spec and sturdy
dependability. So successful has it been that the Skoda
badge now has a lustre of its own. With the new Kodiaq,
the ambitious carmaker has set its sights on the large SUV
segment where competition is intense and something
special is needed to establish a strong niche.
The Kodiaq range comes in three versions, Active, Ambition
and Style. The Active offers a petrol (1.4TSI) engine, while
the Ambition and Style versions are available in petrol and
The model under test, the Style 2.0TDI 150HP 4x4 has a
manual transmission but is also available as a 190HP 7-speed
bear species for a reason. Stretching 4.7m in length and
claiming the largest wheelbase in its class, the Style 4X4 is
big and brawny, easily matching rivals for boot capacity and
The roomy cabin is enhanced by the use of high-quality
throughout, including multiple interior colour lighting
options. From the driver's perspective, the Style's high
driving position offers excellent all-round visibility without
sacrificing comfort or headroom.
The dash is intuitively laid out for ease of use and offers
minimal distraction from the road.
trekking or outback adventuring, but this Kodiaq is no teddy
bear. It is a durable and versatile performer, well-capable
of tackling whatever the Irish road network, climate and
landscape throw at it. Handling is as solid and reliable as
you would expect from Skoda.
Having ticked the boxes on dependability and high-quality
spec, the Kodiaq also aims to appeal to the thrifty buyer. The
entry level petrol Active is pitched at 28,795 while the diesel
models start at 35,495.
As you move up through the versions, from a pricing point
of view, the air gets a little more rarefied. The model under
test, for example, costs 40,395, rising by a further 2,400
with the addition of extras, such as the full seven-seat
capacity option (1,000), and the Style+ Pack (1,400),
which includes a panoramic sunroof and electric tailgate.
Clearly, the cost-conscious buyer must remain selective
about add-ons, but overall, the Kodiaq range looks ready to
set a new benchmark for value in large SUVs.