Time strikes quick within the automobile world. At present’s champion is tomorrow’s champion, usurped by new, sooner, higher expertise, efficiency or economic system. Skoda’s Kodiaq was New Zealand’s Automobile of the Yr. Not final yr, the yr earlier than, and even earlier. Attempt going again to 2017, when the brand new seven-seater set motor noters on fireplace with its intelligent pondering and all-round goodness.
A yr later, in 2018, the RS mannequin launched with a bang, setting a document we did not even know existed because the quickest seven-seat SUV across the Nurburgring Nordschleife, pushed by the late Sabine Schmitz. .
Quick ahead 5 years, and Skodas at the moment are our police automobiles, the Sabine sadly handed away in 2021, and the Kodiaq RS continues to be widespread, a barely totally different animal. However is it nonetheless magnificence? Has the sport moved round or behind Kodiak?
The principle facet that has the potential to alter that is the RS’s engine swap. Nonetheless utilizing a 2.0-litre four-cylinder as a substitute of the earlier RS utilizing its 176kW 500Nm twin-turbo diesel, this new mannequin presents extra energy, much less torque than the single-turbo petrol: now 180kW and 370Nm.
The excellent news: it is faster, by a fraction: 4 of those: 6.6 seconds to 100km/h is 4 tenths faster, nevertheless it’s additionally 65kg lighter, due to the engine/gearbox mixture.
View all fashions of Skoda Kodiaq on DRIVEN
Minor revisions to the styling make it a bit extra strong, nevertheless it’s the brand new 20-inch alloy wheels that determine the mannequin, with detachable plastic covers designed to be extra aero environment friendly.
Cabin-wise, it is all the time been nice, with some minor updates to trim, stitching and ambient lighting. The sports activities seats are huggable, however in addition they carry heating, air flow and therapeutic massage.
The brand new digital dashboard is on the forefront of expertise, with a big 10.25-inch display that gives totally different modes and gauges relying on the driving mode chosen.
A sophisticated Crew Defend system makes use of radars to mitigate collisions from practically each angle, and all of the on a regular basis tech expectations like CarPlay/Android, wi-fi charging and radar cruise management.
The cleverness continues with a funnel for fluids, an ice scraper/magnifier on the gasoline filler flap, umbrellas within the door pockets and compartments within the boot; However sadly there are some drawbacks, together with a conveyable boot torch and flip-out door edge protectors.
The necessity for a 95 octane dose hurts a bit greater than the diesel, however the reward is a sooner, extra spirited drive within the petrol RS, its lighter nostril extra keen to show and parry when the time and highway are proper.
The RS was all the time on the prime of the Kodiaq tree, and whereas the dual-clutch gearbox generally is a bit decisive from a cease, and different newer fashions have gone from deciding on its heels, to rubbing shoulders, the RS continues to be stuffed with efficiency. is A petroleum-powered piece of enjoyable that comfortably seats 5, and +2 within the third row, offered they’re child-sized. Adults can slot in a squeeze, nevertheless it’s a matter of folding the 2 front-row sliding seats to accommodate; Auckland to Wellington will not be really useful.
Is the petrol model a greater RS? Sure, and whereas others could have caught the Kodiaq making it rather less standout and distinctive than it as soon as was, the RS retains it within the ring, eager and in a position to tackle any struggle. That it is simply $5k greater than the turbo-diesel seven-seat Sportline brings the 2 fashions nearer collectively, and presents choices, do you have to want them. Go for the RS, you recognize you need to.
SKODA KODIAQ RS
Engine: 2.0 turbo petrol 4
Gearbox: 7-speed DSG, AWD
0-100KM/H: 6.6 seconds
Financial system: 8.3l/100km