Built on the VW MQB platform – the same one that the Volkswagen Passat uses – the third generation of the Skoda Superb was initially made available with a choice of three turbocharged petrol engines and two turbocharged diesel ones. Following the 2019 facelift of the Superb, however, Skoda introduced its first-ever plug in hybrid car. As a practical family car, many car reviews of the Skoda Superb point out what great value for money it affords. However, when you compare it to other hybrids, especially the Skoda Superb estate, then it really is in something of a class of its own. Does the Skoda Superb and the Skoda Superb estate offer a way into electrically powered driving for motorists who want to run a large family car? Read on to find out.
Range, Charging, & Emissions
In the real world, you can expect to be able to drive for between 36 and 37 miles on the plug-in hybrid before turning to petrol to power the engine. With the two combined, you can get an engine range of 578 miles before needing to refuel.
There is a 13 kWh battery in the hybrid version of the Skoda Superb iV. Most of this is distributed in what would have been more boot space in the petrol engine version of the car.
You need a 3.6 kW, type 2, outlet to make the PHEV version of the Skoda Superb practical. Therefore, expect a full charge to take four hours with such as connection. If you have access to a 22 kW outlet, then it takes roughly the same amount of time, however.
To charge your 13 kWh Skoda Superb battery to the maximum, you will need to fork out in the region of £2 depending on your utility supplier. This works out at the cost of less than 7 pence per mile you drive, though.
The Skoda Superb plug-in hybrid sits in insurance group 26, the same as the 2-litre petrol engine version of the normal Superb. The L and K trim Skoda Superb is marginally more expensive to insure as it is in group 27. This is remarkably close to its near cousin, the Volkswagen Passat GTE, which is in group 28 for the higher specification trim levels.
The warranty you get with a new Skoda Superb will last for three years from the day you first drive it off the forecourt. However, if you reach the 60,000-mile barrier before then, the warranty will expire. Bear in mind, however, that the battery of a new car will be under guarantee for eight years or 100,000 miles. You can opt to purchase an extended warranty, too, for either four or five years. Used cars with extended warranties are likely to demand a higher resale value, of course.
For the Superb, Skoda recommends an annual service. However, your Skoda Superb should be serviced if you drive more than 18,000 miles in that period. Both the Skoda Superb estate and hatchback models of the car will notify you of this milestone which is handy. Bear in mind, too, that a new Skoda Superb can be bought with a service plan that will cover the first two years.
The vehicle excise duty on a new Skoda Superb is just £10 for the first year. However, you will need to fork out £145 per annum for taxing your Skoda Superb after that. The Benefit in Kind tax rate for company car owners who drive a Skoda Superb is 11 per cent in the financial year 2021-22 but this is likely to rise a little in subsequent years like similar models. If your drive your Skoda Superb into the London congestion charge zone, then it will be not be charged, however.
A Skoda Superb hybrid electric car will get to 0 to 62 mph in 7.7 seconds. The top speed of the car, including the Skoda Superb estate, is 138 mph with an engine power of 215 bhp. That's not bad, considering the speed and accelerating power of most estate cars available today.
When comparing to other large family car options and estate cars, the Superb does well, generally speaking. However, it is slower than a Volvo V60 PHEV, which gets to 62 mph from a standing start in just 5.4 seconds. A Toyota Corolla PHEV will do the same job in a fraction over 8.1 seconds while the Passat GTE takes a comparable 7.6 seconds under test conditions.
Owners of a Skoda Superb hatchback or estate will have three driving modes to experiment with. E-mode is the one that you would choose to drive the car on electric power only. Switch to Hybrid-mode in your Skoda Superb for both the electric and petrol-powered engines combined. These will work together or independently depending on where and how you happen to be driving. Finally, you can select the third driving mode with the Skoda Superb, known as SPORT-mode. This unleashes the power of the Superb's 218PS drive system for the most dynamic drive of the three.
The most economical way to drive a Skoda Superb is to never put it into SPORT-mode. You will get an official MPG of over 200 if you are very careful and never use the petrol tank. However, most people will find that about 75 MPG is more than economical enough in the real world. Bear in mind that the car offers regenerative braking which boosts the Superb's efficiency no end.
How it performs in different environments: Even when you are on the open road on a long journey, one of the great things about the Skoda Superb – even when compared to diesel estate cars – is that it is efficient running on petrol. City journeys are where it feels at home, especially those to and from work in traffic when the Skoda Superb never feels underpowered. It may not have the same power as a four-wheel-drive diesel Skoda Superb estate but it still offers it where it counts, overtaking or filtering onto a dual carriageway.
Outwardly, the Skoda Superb is one of those models that will never set the world alight. Although the hatchback looks more like a conventional saloon, it will never make a statement like most of Skoda's rivals. The estate version looks even more blocky. However, there is a nice set of alloy wheels you get with the entry-level SE model and privacy glass for the SE Technology model. So-called sports styling comes with the Skoda Superb Sportline but it doesn't make it look like anything other than it is – a chunky, if practical, family car.
The range-topping L and K model has 18-inch Propus aero anthracite alloy hubs and anti-theft bolts to distinguish it externally but not much else. 19-inch alloys come with the Skoda Superb Sportline plus you get full matrix headlamps if you fork out for the SE L model. Skoda's clever use of the front grille to hide the charging point is a good design feature.
There are five official trim levels of the Skoda Superb hatchback. These are the aforementioned SE, SE Technology, SE L, Sportline and L and K models. Most of the differentiators are on the inside, however. For the estate models of the Superb Skoda offers the same five trims and optional extras.
The Skoda Superb may look a little chunky in its exterior styling but inside it is very refined. There is space for an eight-inch touchscreen display in the central console and the digital display behind the wheel resembles the Audi virtual cockpit design.
The Sportline and L and K cars get a slightly larger touchscreen for running the infotainment system but the menu you get is basically the same. Expect Bluetooth connectivity plus compatibility with both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. The Skoda Superb also includes sat nav within the infotainment system. Even better, the infotainment system you get with the Skoda Superb offers integration with Amazon Alexa, so you can get information from it via your smartphone, such as when the Skoda's reached full charge.
All of the car offerings in the Superb range come with digital radio as standard. The SE L model of the Skoda Superb has pleated leather and a few other luxurious touches. You can use your smartphone to precondition the interior of the Skoda Superb, too, a good thing to know if you want to cool it down prior to a long journey on a sunny day, for example.
The Skoda Superb is a spacious car. The Superb rear seats feel comfortable with three passengers occupying them even in the hatchback version of the new car design. There is a place to store cables in the rear and some handy door wells in the front and the rear. The glove compartment offers a reasonable amount of storage space, too.
The very spacious boot of the standard Skoda Superb is cut down a little by the battery. However, you still get 485 litres of boot space, so there is plenty of room for luggage. Fold down the rear seats and this will expand to a huge 1,610 litres so the Skoda Superb certainly wins in terms of sheer practicality. Even with the Superb rear seats up, you'll get 510 litres of space in the estate version, more than enough for most jobs. You can fold them down, of course, in the 60:40 ratio that is typical for cars of this class.
When Euro NCAP last tested the Superb it was 2019 and not a PHEV model. That said, it scored just s well as its main rivals with five stars. The Skoda's best score was for adult occupancy but its child occupancy rating was not far behind. The model that was tested was a 1.5 litre diesel LHD estate. Few would expect the Superbs' PHEV variants to fare any worse when they are tested.
The Superb has plenty of safety equipment, including autonomous emergency braking, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, seven different airbags, adaptive cruise control and even a sensor to detect driver drowsiness. Isofix child seat points are located in the back and the passenger seat. Skoda also offers an auto lane assistance system which will warn you if your manual control is a little lacklustre.
The entry-level version of the PHEV Superb will set you back £31,970. This is about £7,000 more than the petrol or diesel versions of the car. However, you get a lot of practicality for your money despite the Superb rear storage being cut down somewhat to accommodate the battery. The SE L hatchback comes with a price of £34,755 while the top of the range L and K has a price of £38,960.