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    Car Skoda Octavia Estate vRS 230 / #Skoda-Octavia-Estate-vRS-230 / #Skoda-Octavia-Estate-vRS / #Skoda-Octavia-Estate / #Skoda-Octavia / #Škoda-Octavia-5E / #Škoda-Octavia / #Skoda-Octavia-Estate-vRS-230-5E / #Skoda-Octavia-Estate-5E / #VAG / #SKODA / #Škoda / #Skoda

    Overarching VW Group strategy means Skoda models often don’t get the power they could. But there is a remedy.

    While the Octavia’s 227bhp is a commendable amount of shove, it’s some way short of the 280bhp-plus that the hottest Volkswagen Golf and SEAT Leon models deliver, yet all these cars use essentially the same 2-litre turbo engine. With the vRS 230 sporting an electronically controlled limited-slip differential and adaptive chassis control, just like those more potent Golfs and Leons, I reckon it would cope well if given, say, 25 per cent more go.

    So this month I’ve looked into some of the remap options that are available – the kind you might want to consider if you own a vRS – and it turns out the figures that can be achieved for quite modest amounts of money are eye-widening.

    One of the more affordable offerings is from Superchips, who for £399 will increase the vRS 230’s peak power by 59bhp and torque by 68lb ft, taking the totals to 286bhp and 326lb ft.

    DMS Automotive, meanwhile, takes things a little further. Its remap lifts power to 305bhp and torque from 258lb ft to 332lb ft. The price for this is £690, but it does include an individual mapping session in one of the company’s dyno centres.

    Finally, there’s Revo Technik, a company whose wares this magazine has experienced before in the form of a 371bhp Golf R capable of cracking 60mph in 3.7sec.

    Revo offers upgrade packages that comprise electronic changes alone or include further hardware modifications. Its Stage 1 package for the latest Octavia vRS is purely electronic and results in a scarcely believable 319bhp (as a minimum, apparently). That’s more potency than a Golf GTI Clubsport S. The company’s development Octavia, fitted with a Stage 1 pack, has posted a 0-100mph sprint of 11.2 seconds. The cost? £599, or £7 per extra horsepower.

    Any of these remaps would make the Skoda a very quick car, and as some of these tuners claim, the difference in fuel economy when driving steadily should be negligible if not non-existent – something that our experience of the more powerful factory versions of this engine would confirm.

    Pretty enticing, isn’t it? Sadly, though, my hands are tied, as evo’s Octavia is owned by Skoda, not us. But if any Octavia owners out there have had an aftermarket power hike, do get in touch at – I’d love to hear about your experience.

    Date acquired November #2016
    Total mileage 14,655
    Mileage this month 943
    Costs this month £0
    Mpg this month 30.6
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    FAST FLEET evo’s staff photographer gets a new workhorse in the form of a stealthy Skoda estate.

    NEW ARRIVAL #Skoda-Octavia-Estate-vRS-230 / #Skoda-Octavia-Estate-vRS / #Skoda-Octavia-Estate / #Skoda-Octavia / #Škoda-Octavia-5E / #Škoda-Octavia / #Skoda-Octavia-Estate-vRS-230-5E / #Skoda-Octavia-Estate-5E / #VAG / #SKODA / #Škoda / #Skoda


    We won’t deny it: we do like a good hot-hatch-based estate derivative here at evo. It’s why we have a Focus ST on our long-term fleet (see opposite) and also why we’re now running this – a Skoda Octavia Estate vRS 230, in a particularly fetching shade called Black Magic.

    Of course, the real magic of this breed of car lies in its ability to meld deceptive pace with reliability, comfort, low running costs and a large enough dose of fun to tie it all together. To this end, we’ve opted for the six-speed manual ’box instead of the #DSG , which had a habit of tripping over itself in the diesel vRS we previously ran (and rated highly).

    The numerical element of this car’s name signifies a 10bhp increase over the standard Octavia vRS. So here the 2-litre turbo in-line four makes 227bhp at 4700-6200rpm and 258lb ft at 1500-4600rpm, which is enough for a 0-62mph time of 6.8 seconds (just half a second behind a Golf GTI Clubsport Edition 40) and a top speed of 153mph. Thirst is rated at 44mpg.

    The 230 also gets an electronically controlled limited-slip differential. It’s the same one you’ll find in the Golf GTI Performance Pack, and along with a new (and aurally very pleasing) sports exhaust and the tickled ECU, it accounts for the bulk of the 230’s £1690 premium over the regular vRS.

    The Estate vRS 230 is £27,800 basic, which seems a good deal as the model is generously equipped as standard. It gets 19-inch wheels wrapped with 225-section tyres, bixenon headlights and LED tailights, and gloss-black exterior trim for the full sleeper look. Handsome? Surprisingly so.

    Within the distinctly German cabin you get meaty sports seats, a touchscreen satnav, DAB radio, dualzone climate control, cruise control and even a driver-fatigue sensor for what I’m hoping will be effortless motorway schleps to and from farflung photographic locations.

    The optional extras we’ve gone for include the panoramic sunroof (£1150), Canton sound system (£500), rear-view parking camera (£300) and that lovely paint (£360). The box for Dynamic Chassis Control (£850) has also been ticked because the ability to soften or firm up the suspension and alter the steering weight through several modes is key to this car’s all-round appeal.

    The total cost? £32,120. Sounds like a lot, and it’s a wedge of cash more than our new Ford. It’s going to be interesting finding out which car represents the breed’s best.

    Date acquired November #2016
    Total mileage 1024
    Mileage this month 965
    Costs this month £0
    Mpg this month 34.2

    Cars like this meld deceptive pace with reliability, comfort, low running costs and a dose of fun’
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