Has Skoda’s first plug in hybrid been worth the wait? We’re in Amsterdam to test the Superb iV before its Irish launch in 2020.
The already terrific Skoda Superb has had a facelift this summer. The liftback and combo estate variants are improved in many ways but the range becomes complete with the arrival of the Superb iV. The plug in hybrid (PHEV) Superb iV generates 218hp from a combination of its 1.4 litre TSI petrol engine and electric motor. From a full charge of the battery pack the iV can deliver up to 62km (WLTP) of electric only range. This means that the school run can be done with ease but there is also potentially a full day’s worth of driving using electricity alone. With a full charge and full fuel tank the range increases to a potential 930km.
Various drive modes are selectable at a press of the ‘Drive Mode Select’ button. This feature is standard on iVs and available on regular Superbs. The modes alter the characteristics of the car’s transmission, steering and the DCC dynamic chassis control. A new button next to the DCC is of particular interest. This gives access to the hybrid drive mode. In E-mode (EV) the iV shuts off the engine and runs in electric only mode until the battery depletes (or you kick down on the accelerator) then the engine kicks in again. You can store or recharge the battery on the go using the engine and regenerative braking to allow EV only use later – say in a built up area or EV only zone – they’re coming!
The petrol engine pushes out 156hp while the electric motor generates 115hp. The power is delivered to the front wheel via a triple clutch DSG automatic gearbox. On the road Superb is an excellent cruiser. When provoked the sprint from 0-100km/h takes just 7.7 seconds. The iV delivers a very relaxed driving experience due in the main to its very quiet powertrain. In E-Mode the iV can sprint in near silence from 0-60km/h in just 5 seconds. The iV has a noise generator (mandatory in the EU) that creates a sound or E-noise as Skoda calls it, to enhance safety for pedestrians and cyclists at city speeds. Hybrid mode does what it says on the tin and electronically controls and runs whatever power source or combination is required.
Average fuel consumption is quoted at 1.5L/100km (188mpg) and 14-14.5 kWh per 100km – our test drive delivered 17-17.5kWh. Motor tax is €170 annually thanks to CO2 emissions of just 35g/km. The Skoda Superb iV is priced from €40,350 (€41,850 Combi) net of grants but ex. delivery. The iV comes in a range of grades: Ambition, Style, SportLine and L&K and not just one high grade version.
Charging of the under floor mounted lithium-ion battery pack is done via a standard type two EV cable and can take three and a half hours on a domestic 3.6kWh EV wall box. A three pin plug will take up to five hours. The battery also powers the air conditioning and heating system and this can be remotely set via Skoda’s Connect mobile app.
Commenting, John Donegan, Brand Director, ŠKODA Ireland “ŠKODA’s electric journey starts today with the SUPERB iV. The SUPERB iV offers the best of both worlds. The ability to plug-in and charge at home or work, means commuters in Naas, Drogheda, Navan or Greystones travelling to Dublin daily have the potential to commute, powered entirely by electricity. Plug-in hybrid vehicles offer significant advantages over so-called “self-charging hybrids” including significantly lower CO2 emissions and superior fuel economy.” Skoda Ireland is bringing in just 250 Superb iVs in 2020.