To those wondering why our shiny white Superb Estate is not gracing these pages this issue, you’d have to ask the trio of miscreants who decided to remove its wing mirror (and those of a few other cars) for their own amusement one evening. While our long termer is back at the Skoda mothership for repairs, we’ve been given a near identical Superb Hatchback that provides a unique opportunity for a bit of compare and contrast. I guess every cloud has a silver lining… Or Black Magic Pearlescent in the case of this Superb’s paintwork.
This variant of the Skoda looks just as sharp, with its chiselled character lines and distinctive lighting signatures. In black it hides some of its subtle design elements, but there are plenty of people who would favour this car’s saloon-like rear. This example is finished in SE-L trim, but has also been treated to a smart set of optional 19-inch Canopus alloy wheels.
Remembering that ‘our’ Superb was in plusher SportLine Plus guise, the interior of this Hatchback lacks the ambient lighting and Alcantara upholstery, and in its place is sumptuous leather. It features the same excellent Columbus infotainment system with Apple CarPlay, although it had to be chosen as an option on this specification car at £1,210 – a little stingy of Skoda considering the base price of this model is already £33,095.
Something that is very much the same as the estate is the sheer volume of space in the cabin. Rear passengers enjoy vast quantities of head and leg room that rivals that of a standard wheelbase Mercedes-Benz S-Class. This limousine-like experience for rear occupants is something that this car’s rivals can’t measure up to. It’s the same story for the boot, and while not as cavernous as the boxy estate, it features a class-leading 625-litres. That hatchback also makes loading bulky items far easier than a traditional saloon boot lid with a letterbox opening.
In terms of how this car drives versus the estate, there’s little difference in reality. Both have the same strong 188bhp 2.0-litre diesel engine and seven-speed DSG gearbox, a combination that makes lengthy motorway stints a breeze. One notable difference is that this car rides on a standard suspension setup, while SportLine cars get a more dynamic flavouring. While I always thought the firmer suspension was well-judged, this SE-L trimmed car demonstrates that if you’re looking for the most cosseting ride, it might actually be the better choice. The trade off, however, is that you’ll find some addition body roll though faster bends.
But our lockdown stint with the Superb hatchback has proved that whichever bodystyle you choose from Skoda’s large car line up, it still remains utterly and truly Superb.
Date arrived 19th March 2020
Fuel economy44.1-49.6mpg (WLTP combined) 42.5mpg (on test)
It might not offer the ultimate in practicality that our Superb Estate does, but the boot of this Hatchback is still enormous.
The Columbus infotainment system is very good, but its glossy finish makes it a magnet for dust and fingerprints.