With coronavirus lockdown restrictions starting to be lifted, we’re now in a position where we can start venturing a little further afield. Not only is it doing wonders for me as I’m now able to travel to see friends and family, but finally I can stretch the legs of the Superb and see what it’s like on longer journeys. After all, this big Skoda’s space and comfort are its biggest selling points, so it would be a shame to have had it for a 12-month review, only for its main journeys to be short and local.
One of its first ‘big’ runs was to a shoot near Leeds. Needless to say, it was a big shoot, so we had pretty much a full boot of filming equipment, however, whereas on some cars I’ve had to fold down seats for all our kit, I was able to get the bulk of it in without impacting any of the passenger seats – not that I had any passengers.
The only real issue I’ve noticed so far with the load bay is the underfloor storage. I can see how for many it would be an extremely useful space for the charging cable, however, with the boot full of grip equipment, lighting stands, tripods, camera equipment and drones, it’s not easily accessible, so at the moment the cables are living in the rear passenger footwell.
What is really useful though is the low load lip, which makes getting heavier items in considerably easier. Plus, the boot is a good shape and can be extended further by folding down the split-fold rear seats. With the rear seats in place, it has 510 litres of space which expands to an enormous 1,800 litres with them folded flat – that’s not far off premium estate offerings like the Audi A6 Avant, BMW 5 Series Touring and Mercedes E-Class.
So that’s the space and practicality covered. Now onto the business of what it’s like to drive. The Superb is powered by a 1.4-litre turbocharged petrol engine, now that might seem rather small for such a big cab, but when it’s matched to the 113bhp electric motor and 12kWh battery that improves power to 215bhp. Now that might not be as much as some of its close competitors, but it does make it a bit more spirited behind the wheel. 0-60mph takes just over 7.5 seconds and it’ll keep going to a top speed of 140mph.
Now when I say spirited, this isn’t a car that will set pulses racing, but think of it more like a comfortable cruiser instead. It’s at home at motorway speeds instead of on twisty country lanes. You can, however, select a Sport mode which is designed to sharpen up the throttle response and use the energy from the battery with the petrol engine to make the most of that 215bhp. Let’s be honest though, if you’re in the market for a car that’s going to offer thrills behind the wheel, a Superb hybrid is unlikely to be your first port of call.
While the road trip to the north was a smooth and comfortable one, the only issue I came across was a rather large stone chip in the windscreen. Fortunately, I was able to get this fixed via a Nationwide Windscreen Services natwin.co.uk who was able to make it as good as new within about half an hour.
Model as tested: Skoda Superb iV
Price as tested: £41,410
Engine: 1.4-litre petrol plus electric motor
Max speed: 140mph
0-60mph: 7.6 seconds
Emissions: 37g/km CO2