Despite the increase in weight and height over the normal Octavia Estate, the Scout is a confident overtaker.
The Scout the choice of two 2.0-litre diesels. The lower-powered diesel (with 148hp) will do 0-62mph in 9.1 seconds,129mph flat-out and will achieve a claimed 55.4mpg.
The ride height helps more with providing a comfortable ride than adding much off-road ability
The higher powered diesel (with 182hp) only comes with the DSG automatic gearbox, which is actually slightly clunkier and coarser than the smooth manual matched to its lower-powered counterpart. It’s more expensive too: it costs £2,675 more than the slower version, but Skoda claims the same 55.4mpg for the 182hp engine as the 148hp, and the 0-60mph time drops to a nippy 7.8 seconds.
Although the Scout lacks the handling prowess of the normal estate this is unlikely to faze you in day-to-day driving. Although the noise of the diesel engine is a little intrusive at high revs, all-round body control is good, and it’s smooth when cruising at speed.
This level of performance is made all the more satisfying for the knowledge that it can tackle a muddy field with the best of them. You don’t need to work any levers or buttons to switch modes when you plan to go off-road – you’re just rewarded with much better traction over its two-wheel-drive counterparts.