Skoda Superb Review
The Skoda Superb offers class-leading rear legroom and high levels of build quality for a keen price. A Passat has a nicer interior, though, while a Mondeo is more fun to drive.
This score is awarded by our team of expert reviewers after extensive testing of the car
- Huge interior space
- Generous standard equipment
- Keen pricing
What's not so good
- VW Passat is plusher inside…
- …And slightly more comfortable
- Ford Mondeo is more fun
Skoda Superb: what would you like to read next?
If Doctor Who was in the market for a car, the Skoda Superb would be a good start. Despite it looking about the same size as a Volkswagen Passat, Ford Mondeo, Vauxhall Insignia Grandsport or Mazda 6 on the outside, step inside and it’s something of a Tardis by comparison.
It’s not too shabby on the quality front, either: inside it’s extremely close to a Passat when it comes to look and feel. Close enough, in fact, that most people wouldn’t really notice the difference. If we’re being picky, the lower half of the Superb’s cabin does have more scratchy plastics, but everything inside is impressively well screwed together and there are enough gloss black and chrome accents to lift the mood.
The Superb gets at least an 8-inch infotainment system with DAB radio, Bluetooth and built-in sat-nav, although you can upgrade to a 9-inch version. Both look great with their glass front when switched off, but also display pin-sharp graphics once on and are nicely responsive to prods, pinch and zoom. All models also come with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
And cars don’t come much bigger inside than this. There’s a huge amount of room around the front seats and the driver gets generous seat and wheel adjustment, whether it be of the standard manual kind or electrically operated higher up the range. In the back it’s the same story – tall adults will have an almost comical amount of knee room sat in the outside seats and their heads will be well clear of the ceiling.
If you want Selfridges space for Matalan money, you’ll need to investigate the Skoda Superb. It’s simply huge inside but comes at a price that won’t leave you sweaty-palmed.
Furthermore, at 625 litres, the Superb’s boot is the biggest amongst its alternatives. The closest challenger is the VW Passat which has 586 litres, while a Ford Mondeo is further off the mark.
Although there are more powerful petrol options, the entry-level 1.5 with 150hp never leaves you wanting when accelerating and is always extremely smooth and quiet. It’s a great choice if you do most of your driving in town, but there’s always a plug-in hybrid model to consider if you fancy something you can cruise around in at low speeds using just electrical power.
Given the Superb is a popular company car, diesel is likely to remain the more popular option. You’re best off with the 2.0 150hp, with its great get-up-and-go yet still-impressive fuel economy making it the best all-rounder.
The Superb is a big car but it’s easy to drive in town. It has light, precise steering and good visibility for breezing tight town manoeuvres. The only black mark is that it struggles a little over sharp bumps than a Volkswagen Passat. Head on to the motorway and the Superb comes into its own, though. Its soft, wafty gait makes it great for covering long distances and its cabin stays really quiet whichever engine you go for. It does a decent job of going around corners, too. OK, it’s no sports car, nor as outright agile as a Mondeo, but you always have confidence when driving it hard.
You might have noticed, then, that’s there’s very little bad to say about The Skoda Superb. Aside from some minor quality and comfort issues, it’s a hugely impressive all-rounder – one that has to be on your list of options. Before you buy, make sure you see how much you can save off one on our Skoda Superb deals pages.
The Skoda Superb is well built inside and features enough soft plastics and interesting trims to feel special too. A VW Passat does feel slightly plusher still, though.
The Skoda Superb is bigger than all its alternatives inside – in fact, it’s roomier than some large luxury saloons. If anything, some people might find it too big.
Never mind hiring a van to move house - just grab a Skoda Superb. Few cars can match its interior space - certainly at this money.
Cars don’t come much bigger inside than the Skoda Superb. There’s a huge amount of room around the front seats and the driver gets generous seat and steering-wheel adjustment, whether it be of the standard manual kind or electrically operated higher up the range.
In the back it’s the same story – tall adults will have an almost comical amount of knee room sat in the outside seats and their heads will be well clear of the ceiling. Adding a third adult in the middle seat isn’t much of a hardship, either. Sure, there’ll be a bit of shoulder rubbing but it’s still plenty wide enough to carry three adults on fairly long journeys.
The back seats aren’t quite as easy to slide into as those in a high-riding SUV such as the Skoda Kodiaq, but the Superb’s lower ride height means it’s dead easier to lift in a heavy baby seat. The standard Isofix anchor points don’t give you any hassle when you slot in a seat base either, and the large rear door openings give you plenty of room to lean in and strap in a child.
Skoda has gone to town on the Superb in terms of storage spaces. You get a ‘jumbo’ box hidden under the front-centre armrest, twin cup holders for the front and back seats, plus front seats that have hidden shelves underneath and small pockets on their inner bolsters.
All four doors come with a generous storage bin inside, and plenty of USB ports dotted about the place to keep everyone’s devices fully charged. The only downside, si that all but one of these are of the newer USB C-type – fine if you have a brand-new phone, but less useful if you’re still hanging on to an older model.
The Skoda Superb’s boot can carry 625 litres of luggage – that’s significantly more than you can fit in most alternatives. The closest challenger is the VW Passat which has 586 litres, while a Ford Mondeo is even further off the mark.
It isn’t just about sheer size, though, the Superb’s boot is also practical. Its hatchback opening means you benefit from fantastic access and there’s not much of a lip to lift heavy bags over. Inside you’ll also find a whole host of nets, hooks and cubbies to make life easier.
All told you’ll easily fit two or three large suitcases plus some carry-on cases on top, while a pushchair or set of golf clubs will be no issue at all. Flipping down the rear seats opens up a van-like cabin, into which a bike will slot with no problems at all.
If there are any complaints it’s that the hatchback version of the Superb doesn’t come with an adjustable boot floor or load cover that retracts automatically as you open the boot. These are reserved for the estate version of the Superb only.
There’s a healthy choice of engines for the Skoda Superb and it makes a quiet and wafty motorway cruiser. There are comfier choices at lower speeds in town though.
By the start of 2021, Skoda will add a plug-in hybrid Skoda Superb. Right now, low-CO2 diesel Superbs are most popular, but that could all change
There will eventually be seven engines choices for the Skoda Superb, including petrol, diesel and plug-in hybrid power, as well as manual and automatic gearboxes and two and four-wheel drive.
Although there are more powerful petrol options, the entry-level 1.5 with 150hp is a great engine – it never leaves you wanting when accelerating and is always fairly smooth and quiet. If you do most of your driving in town on shorter journies, it’s a great choice. The 190hp and 272hp 2.0 petrols are clearly quicker, but also thirstier and more expensive to buy.
But, given the Superb is an extremely popular company car, diesel is likely to remain the more popular option. There’s an entry-level 120hp 1.6 if you’re really looking to save fuel (it’ll return 50mpg without fuss), but you’re better off with the 2.0 150hp instead, with its better get-up-and-go yet still-impressive fuel economy making it the better all-rounder. There’s a 190hp 2.0 diesel too, but unless you really need the marginal extra oomph, it isn’t worth the extra outlay.
There’s also a plug-in hybrid model that’s worth considering if you have a relatively short commute and have somewhere to charge it regularly. This model pairs a 1.4-litre petrol engine with a perky electric motor to add a bit of extra shove when you accelerate hard, and to let you cruise along almost silently around town. It costs more to buy than the standard petrol-powered models, but you’ll see it deliver almost 100mpg on a two-hour drive after a full charge.
Given that its engine and motor work together to produce 218hp, this hybrid Skoda is the fastest in the Superb range. It’s just a shame that the regenerative braking system – which uses the electric motor as a brake to recharge the batteries – feels very odd at slow speeds and the standard automatic gearbox is a little jerky once the petrol engine takes over.
The Skoda Superb is a big car but it’s easy to drive in town. It has light, precise steering and good visibility for shrugging off tight town manoeuvres, while front and rear parking sensors come as standard from second-rung SE trim. There’s even a parking aid that’ll park the car for you on more expensive models. The only black mark is comfort around town – the Superb struggles a little over sharp bumps where a Volkswagen Passat would better take it in its stride.
However, head on the to the motorway and the Superb comes into its own. It’s soft, wafty gait makes it, er, superb, for covering long distances and its cabin stays really quiet whichever engine you go for. To make things even more relaxing, Skoda’s Lane Assist option works together with its adaptive cruise control (standard from SE trim) to accelerate, brake and steer to keep you in your lane – as long as you keep your hands on the steering wheel.
It does a decent job of going around corners, too. OK, so it’s no sports car, nor as outright agile as a Mondeo, but you always have confidence in the Superb’s steering, while its impressive grip and composed body through tight bends help, too. The punchiest petrol and diesel models come with all-wheel drive for even greater reassurance in poor weather.
From SEL trim you’re able to choose your driving mode – Sport mode adds weight to the steering, improves throttle and gearbox response – providing you go for an automatic model. There’s also optional (aside from range-topping L&K trim) adaptive suspension to make your Superb lean even less in corners. Ultimately, though, none of this is really worth the extra cash given the Skoda Superb’s laid back approach.