Skoda has sold 5,000 cars this year so far. They’re proud of it too, and so they should be.
It is a brand that flies under the radar, but is one that motoring journalists love. It is pure, value-packed, fun. It has all the quality and innovation of VW, and perhaps even Audi, at a lower price.
The 245 indicates 245hp, which translates to 180kw in our language, and don’t we love it.
For an extra $4,500 over the standard VRS models, the 245 gains extra power, and more gear. Sadly, the Luxury and Tech packs remains optional extras. The wagon version costs an $1,500 for all Octavia models.
There have been performance Octavias in the past, but the 245 is a permanent fixture for those wanting extra chili on their beef.
There are a few differences between the 245 performance model, and run of the mill 169kw RS cars.
Importantly, an extra 11kw/25Nm in tuning, and an extra cog on the DSG, making the 245 a 7 speed DSG.
The DSG allows quick changes up and down, with a “blip” rev match in the downshifts. No power is lost, and the engine stays right in the sweet spot ready for a blast out of the corner.
Also unique to the 245 is the electronically controlled inter-axel mechanical wheel lock. Other RS cars use the ABS to simulate a kind of limited slip diff.
There is variable drive mode control which incudes a user-defined memory for throttle, gearbox, and steering settings. It also controls ride, making city cruising smooth and compliant, yet allowing spirited track day firmness.
In sport mode, the sharp throttle and gear changes allow exact positioning of the car in a corner. The gear selector can be pulled back in to sport mode, or shifted to the left to enter manual.
In manual, gears are changed by using the lever, or steering wheel paddles.
We drove the regular VRS to the track, and it is a peach, so is there 245 worth the extra shekels?
In a word, yes.