Skoda Scala takes on Golf and Focus

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Skoda has announced full details for its Scala family hatchback ahead of its arrival in the coming months. It’s based on the same MQB A0 platform as the VW Polo and SEAT Ibiza, but sized to take on the Ford Focus and provide an alternative for Octavia customers, with competitive pricing and a more youthful design. The Scala brings with it a subtle new design language and infotainment system, along with a host of safety features. Measuring 4,362mm long, the Scala sits between the Octavia and Golf in size and has looks inspired by Skoda’s Vision RS concept. There are sharp lines, and the replacement for the Rapid Spaceback pays tribute with a distinctive rear windscreen that extends onto the hatchback, but now with Skoda lettering instead of a roundel. Full LED head and tail lights will be available, along with a panoramic sunroof. Alloy wheels range in size from 16- to 18-inches, with three new designs finished in gloss black and aerodynamically optimised to help the Scala achieve its low 0.29 Cd drag co-efficient.


SKODA SCALA TAKES ON GOLF AND FOCUS


Skoda Scala takes on Golf and Focus
Skoda Scala takes on Golf and Focus

The exterior design is reflected inside, with a dashboard that sees the infotainment screen sitting atop the fascia for the first time in a Skoda. It’s framed by soft-touch materials that’s said to echo the shape of the bonnet and provide a comfortable hand rest for using the touchscreen that will start from 6.5-inches. The top 9.2-inch screen will feature navigation and software that can be updated ‘over the air’ as frequently as desired, while new apps can be added to boost its usability. Coming in at 10.25 inches, the optional Virtual Cockpit instrument display offers five views, including Basic, Modern, Sport and Extended, with the map displayed on a large scale. Red and white ambient lighting will be offered, along with microfibre upholstery and a heated windscreen, steering wheel and seats for winter driving.

While designed to be sporty, the Scala is said to offer the same rear knee room as the Octavia thanks to its 2,649mm wheelbase. Rear headroom is class-leading, as is its boot capacity of 467 litres behind the rear seats. Simply Clever features like a ticket holder, umbrella compartment and ice scraper are all present and correct, and the Scala will also get an optional powered tailgate and in a first for the class, an electrically retractable tow bar.

Safety follows a similar path, with many features from larger models. Side assist alerts you to cars approaching from behind around 50 metres sooner than blind-spot detection and there’s adaptive cruise control, self-parking, lane assist and autonomous emergency braking on offer. Up to nine airbags can be fitted and Crew Protect Assist closes windows and tensions the seatbelts in the event of a crash.

While no efficiency figures have been released yet, a 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol with 94 or 114bhp and a 1.6-litre TDI diesel unit with 114bhp are expected to be the most economical of the engines on offer. The diesel powerplant is fitted with Selective Catalyst Reduction, AdBlue injection and features a six-speed manual as standard, or an optional seven-speed DSG automatic. Owners will also be able to choose a standard or Sport Chassis Control setup. The latter is 15mm lower and has a Sport mode that firms up the dampers to improve driver engagement.

The new Scala will arrive in Skoda showrooms in the first half of next year, in S, SE and SE L trim levels, with a SportLine version expected to join the line-up later.


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