Blog: Time for Skoda

Carole Nash Classic Insurance Specialists


THIS time last year, I predicted that the world was on the brink of financial meltdown (well, okay, kind of), and that belt-tightening will be 2008’s new black. Well, here we are – everyone’s cutting their expenditure, and the banking system did go into a state of near collapse. It was actually a sentiment that I thought would be good for making a point – why buy a £45,000 car when a £20,000 one will do the job just as well?

The cars in question were a Volkswagen Phaeton, and Skoda Superb, and the outlet for my mad wittering was The Independent (when it had a motoring section). But in my conclusion, I stated that when push came to shove, I’d happily forego the perceived status of a plutocrat motor in favour of the earthier charms of the Superb. I believed it then, and I stand by those sentiments today.

So, ditch the Audi – it looks like Skoda’s time may well have finally come…

I’ve never hidden my admiration for Skoda – I find the Communist-era chariots the most interesting of all of the Iron Curtain motors; and I admire how VAG has turned around the marque’s fortunes to such a degree that I would take one of its products over the equivalent Volkswagen or Audi, any day of the week.

That point’s been brought home to me again today – when I managed to blag a lend of the new Superb. It’s no top-of-the-range example either, being the 1.8TSI version in Elegance trim – and gimmicky boot and troublesome throttle response aside, I find it difficult to find fault with the thing. And just to put it into context, over the past few months, a string of mid-liners has passed through my hands including the Honda Accord, Volvo V70, Ford Mondeo, Volkswagen Passat and so on…

In fact, as we’re now officially in recession (like we didn’t know that anyway), I suspect that Skoda will probably do very well indeed, as people who must buy a new car (will there be that many, though?) choose to take the value, rather than premium, option. But, do you know what – sat inside and wafting along (the chassis is biased towards comfort, although it doesn’t lope quite as well as the last one), I couldn’t help but notice just how classy the cream and black decor actually was – and that it really didn’t seem like a value (as in sacrificial) alternative at all.

So, ditch the Audi – it looks like Skoda’s time may well have finally come…

Keith Adams

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created in 2001 and built it up to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.

Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...

Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.
Keith Adams

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