The Skoda Octavia vRS , a high-performance version of the company’s notchback sedan and estate, was launched in 2001, five years after the Octavia nameplate was revived. The first-generation model was powered by a 1.8-liter, four-cylinder engine that delivered 178 ponies. The unit was later upgraded to displace 2.0 liters and churn out 220 horsepower. Going into the 2015 model year, Skoda is rolling out an even more powerful version of the Octavia, taking its output into the 280-horsepower territory.
Developed to mark the 40th anniversary of the RS brand, the fastest Octavia ever built joins the lineup to take over the range-topping model crown from the already powerful vRS. Dubbed Octavia RS+, the new member of the Octavia range also comes with a host of visual improvements meant to raise the bar in terms of sportiness and aggressiveness. A number of exclusive features set it apart from the regular Octavia and even the vRS, but we’ll talk more about that after the jump.
Click past the jump to read more about the Skoda Octavia RS+.
June 30, 2014 - First testing session
The first prototype of the upcoming Octavia RS+ took the streets in the shape of a station wagon, though a sedan version is also on the table. The high-performance state of this grocery getter is quickly given away by its matte-black exterior — a rather uncommon appearance in the Skoda lineup — and the two-tone, five-spoke wheels. Borrowed from the old Audi TT RS , the rollers aren’t likely to make it on the production car, although we expect for Skoda to sell the RS+ with lightweight, 19-inch shoes fitted at all corners.
The photos also reveal a modified front bumper, which allows for more air to reach the turbocharged, 2.0-liter engine, and a quad-exhaust system. Granted, the mule is not overly aggressive, but we expect more menacing bumpers to find their way onto the front and rear fascias, with flared wheel arches to round off the exterior look. A sports suspension and a limited-slip differential are also in the books, and word on the street has it the Czech automaker is pondering an all-wheel-drive configuration.
Engine-wise, we expect Skoda to drop a 2.0-liter TSI heart under the hood. The mill will feature the same 280-horsepower tune as in the Seat Leon SC Cupra 280 and enable the Octavia RS+ to sprint from 0 to 60 mph in less than 6.5 seconds, making it nearly half a second faster when compared to the Octavia vRS. As far as top speed is concerned, expect Skoda to raise the limit from 144 mph to 155 mph.
Gallery Skoda Octavia RS+
The Volkswagen Jetta may not benefit from the 280 ponies powering the Octavia RS+, but it’s the closest vehicle you can buy in terms of size and pricing. The 2015 Jetta can be had with many engines under the hood, but the range-topping GLI version is the one you should be looking for as an alternative to the RS+. It has a turbocharged, 2.0-liter inline-four engine under the hood that sends 210 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque to the wheels.
The engine remained unchanged for the refreshed, 2015 model, and mates to either a six-speed manual transmission or a six-speed DSG automatic with Tiptronic and Sport mode. The German compact sprints from 0 to 60 mph in a little more than 7 seconds and returns an EPA-estimated 23 mpg in the city and 33 mpg on the highway. In the United States, where the Octavia RS+ won’t be offered, the Jetta GLI retails from $24,535.