Continuing on from last months’ running report, the Skoda Karoq has been thrown into an almost non-stop circus of longer journeys over the past few weeks. In an unusual departure from my usual schedule, a handful of events have been slipped into the diary with only a few days between them, so the Karoq has been ploughing Velvet Red furrows on the motorways that criss-cross the southern half of the country. But that’s a habitat that suits our Skoda well, so there’s been little to complain about.
As I found out in the first few days of custodianship, the mid-sized Skoda SUV really is a supremely comfortable motorway cruiser. At the legal limit there’s very little noise, and the suspension is pliant enough to soak up all manner of lumps and bumps that litter the roads of our hallowed isle. While it’s true that the suspension is generally set up on the softer side, that doesn’t mean that the Karoq isn’t enjoyable off the straight and increasingly narrow major route lanes, as the Skoda dishes up a modicum of fun when the going gets twistier.
The increase in the number of smart motorways (which, ironically, while they’re being updated are anything but – and even when they’re finished it’s questionable), they may be one contributing factor to the Karoq’s slight dip in fuel economy. With speeds limited to 50mph on the motorway while the works are being carried out, the slower velocities have forced the Skoda to sip a drop more fuel. But, although it wasn’t a brim-to-brim calculation – rather one displayed by the car’s computer (which, in most cases is a little optimistic) – I have actually beaten the Karoq’s official fuel economy figure on one recent trip. Slower speeds aside, the bright red Skoda is an easy car to get good economy from. That’s one trait I’d appreciate continuing, considering my more regular diesel pump-wielding appearances at local filling stations this month due to the increased number of longer-range journeys.
Elsewhere, the Karoq’s fuss-free demeanour has continued since the last update. One blip was that the blind spot detection system turned itself off after flashing up an ‘obstruction’ warning, but the remedy was an easy one. Part of our Karoq’s £1,210 optional driver assistance package and controlled by the car’s eight-inch infotainment screen, it can be turned off and on via the car’s settings menu. So after a little while without any little yellow flashing lights on the wing mirrors indicating blind spot traffic, full service was resumed once more. I was surprised that not having owned a car with it before, I thought I didn’t need it, but it’s remarkable how quickly you get used to something when you are without it!
Date arrived 12th November 2018
Fuel economy 58.9mpg (combined) 43.4mpg (on test)
The blind spot monitoring system (and other safety devices) can be turned off, or reset, using the car’s infotainment screen.
The unlined door bins allow drinks bottles to rattle against the plastic of the panel, which creates a very noticeable noise.