No car is perfect, but we've gathered everything relating to the Skoda reliability here to help you decide if it's a smart buy.
Are the engine internals the same in the 2.0-litre turbos from Audi, VW and Skoda?
You’re right, there’s a lot of commonality between the various engines from Skoda, VW and Audi. There are many examples of engines from these brands that all use the same basic bottom-end (crankshaft and pistons) architecture. And yes, in some cases, the main differentiator is the turbo-boost pressure.
But that doesn’t mean that’s the only difference; differing boost levels require different engine management, so the electronic control of the various engines can be very different. There can also be hardware differences such as the actual turbocharger unit and fuel injectors. That’s why it’s not quite as simple as raising boost pressure to arrive at a higher output. Revising engine management to do this requires somebody who really knows what they’re doing. Even then, a moderately powered version of an engine might not have the oil-cooling or strengthened internals of what appears to be the same engine with a higher output.
The VW-Audi group is not the only manufacturer to take this approach, of course, and many other car-makers use the same strategy of producing a variety of different engine tunes from the one basic unit. It’s a great way of differentiating models within a range and, of course, saving money in terms of research and development.
How to reduce the fuel consumption in my Skoda Superb Scout?
While I’ll admit that an average fuel consumption figure of 12.4 litres per 100km is high for your car, there are a few things to consider here. By driving just seven kilometres each way to work and back, you’re probably running for half your driving time with an engine that is still warming up. Cold engines use a richer mixture and that means more fuel. Cold starts are a real problem for fuel consumption, and you appear to be driving on a cold engine for a high percentage of your daily run.
The other consideration is your average speed. You say that there’s no stop-start traffic conditions, but if you drive at urban speeds all the way to work, then you need to be looking at the official urban fuel consumption number which is 9.0 litres per 100km (the 7.3 litres figure you’ve quoted is for a mix of urban and highway running).
Even so, 9 litres per 100km is a lot less than 12.4 litres, so maybe there is something going on. Despite your reservations about Skoda’s politics, the best thing to do is to have the car electronically interrogated to see what, if any, fault codes appear. Only then can you really know what’s going on. Are you using the recommended 95-RON fuel? The wrong octane rating (RON) can have an effect on fuel consumption, as can a heavy right foot.
What caused my 2013 Skoda Fabia to go into limp-home mode?
Your situation may be caused any one (or more) of about a thousand faults that is making the car’s on-board computer think that there’s a major problem. In turn, the computer switches the engine to operate on minimal power to make it home without destroying or further damaging any component. A car’s limp-home mode system is triggered by a range of protocols that are acted upon whenever the car perceives a drama. Anything from low oil level to a hot transmission can cause the limp-home system to intervene, and it can be an actual fault or, sometimes, simply an erroneous signal from a sensor that isn’t telling the truth. Have the car scanned and see what error codes are produced.
What car should I replace my 2011 Hyundai i20 with?
You’ve layed out some challenging requirements here. You’d like a small SUV with a bit of ride comfort and clearly a bit of performance too, given your question about the i30 N.
I think you’ll find the ride harsh on the i30 N, especially since you found the ride on the Kona harsh already. Keep in mind the i30 N is a hot hatch and has the suspension to match.
I find the Subaru XV has very nice ride comfort for the small SUV segment, but I also feel that you will be disappointed with the performance from its 2.0-litre engine. You may also want to consider the new Hybrid Toyota C-HR. The Hybrid drive gives it a smidge of extra kick and it’s a fuel consumption hero, too.
For a better blend of performance and ride, really only the Volkswagen T-Roc and Skoda Karoq are going to excel in the small SUV crowd. In terms of ownership both now have five year warranties, and you can (and should) pre-package five years of servicing on top at a discount.
Skoda Fabia 2017: Would it make a good first car?
I think that a Kia Rio would be an excellent choice as a first car. Especially since a Rio built in the time frame you’re looking at will still have a big chunk of its factory warranty left to run. The Kia seven-year/unlimited kilometre warranty is the best around, really, and provided the car you buy has a complete service record, that warranty will be real peace of mind.
Also, the Rio is known to be a good, solid car that has a good reputation for reliability and durability. The Skoda Fabia, meantime, suffers from the poor reputation of is dual-clutch transmission. The Fabia is also a bit of an orphan in Australia, meaning that it’s largely overlooked by buyers. That means it will potentially be more difficult to unload when you daughter looks to upgrade her car in a few years.
Skoda Octavia 2016: Error message "reverse gear not available"
The DSG gearbox in your car has given Skoda and other members of the Volkswagen family all sorts of grief over the years. The problem you’ve described suggests a build-up of metallic particles (from wear and tear inside the transmission) which are being attracted to the magnetic sensors inside the gearbox and leading to bogus commends being sent to the car’s on-board computer. I’ve also heard of these symptoms being the result of faulty mechatronics and even a software glitch. The mechatronic unit, by the way, is the module that acts as middle-man between the computer and the gear selectors and clutch packs contained within the gearbox itself.
So there are three (among many) possibilities. And the VW (and Skoda) DSG transmission is no stranger to any of them. Either way, a loss of drive at any stage – whether it’s Drive or Reverse – is a potentially dangerous situation and needs to be fixed. Unfortunately, Skoda Australia only extended its factory warranty to five years on vehicles sold after January 1, 2017; after your car was sold. That said, I’d certainly be talking to the brand’s customer relations department with a view to at least finding out what’s wrong and then negotiating on whatever repairs are required.
Does the Skoda Fabia have any known issues?
As part of the Volkswagen family, Skoda cars suffer from the same reliability cloud hanging over them in terms of transmission and electrical problems. The era of Skoda you’re shopping for was also one of the most problematic for such maladies, too, so just because your friend’s car has been perfect, doesn’t mean the next one will behave the same.
The Subaru XV is generally regarded as a more reliable long-term prospect but you’re right in suspecting that it will use a little more fuel. Depending on what engine the Fabia is fitted with, the official combined fuel consumption can be as low as 5.3 litres per 100km, while the XV’s will be anything from 7.0 litres and up. That’s mainly to do with the Subaru’s all-wheel-drive which makes the car heavier and requires more fuel to overcome the drag and friction of driving twice as many wheels and axles.
The pay-off is in the superb grip offered by the Subaru’s all-wheel-drive which gives it an active safety edge over two-wheel-drive cars on less than perfect surfaces. However, if fuel efficiency is your holy grail, then a Subaru might be a disappointment.
Skoda Octavia 2000: Why does the engine keep stopping and won't restart?
On the surface, it sounds like the electrical system is somehow letting you down, Todor. The no-charge light comes on because the engine has stalled and is not driving the alternator, so that’s probably not the root cause here. But only when the glow-plug light appears (which it should every time you turn the ignition on ready to crank the engine) will the engine fire. That’s the clue that whatever glitch is at work here has settled down and is allowing the electrical system to work properly. Of course, a diesel engine doesn’t have a spark (electric) ignition system, so we could be barking completely up the wrong tree here. That said, the modern diesel engine does use a series of electric fuel pumps, and a faulty pump could easily cause the problem you’ve described.
With that in mind, the absolute best advice is to take the car to a workshop with the necessary diagnostic gear and have the car scanned to see what fault codes it coughs up. Until you do that, and can isolate the problem, you can run around in circles for months changing perfectly good components in a costly process of elimination.
Skoda Octavia RS245: Premium or Sports model?
With a price premium of about $15,000 brand-new, the Sport model would seem to have the RS245 beaten for value, wouldn’t it? But it’s not that simple and even though the two are both Skoda Octavias, they are really very different vehicles in every other respect.
While the Sport model is a sensible, practical (despite the Sport badge) sedan or wagon, the RS245 is a much more driver-focussed, sporty machine. The latter is much more firmly suspended and has performance braking hardware and big alloy wheels as well as a clever mechanical front differential to maximise its grip. The differences under the bonnet are just as obvious and with 110kW in the Sport playing 180kW in the RS245, you can guess which is the faster car to drive.
So it really comes down to how much you value a car’s sporty nature. If you do, that $15,000 price jump might not seem so bad. If you don’t the RS245 becomes a very expensive take on the Octavia formula.