Skoda Superb Estate hybrid engines, drive & performance
The Superb iV plug-in hybrid isn’t thrilling to drive, but standard adaptive suspension is a great addition, giving it comfort and secure handling
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The Skoda Superb is absolutely spot-on what you want from a big family estate car and delivers more than most would expect thanks to its secure, neutral and intuitive handling, while comfort is helped by standard adaptive dampers. Thrilling it isn’t, but it is one of those cars that feels as natural and reassuring as if you’d been driving it forever from the very first time you set off in it.
Skoda Superb Estate hybrid 0-62mph, top speed and acceleration
The Superb iV has a punchy power output of 215bhp, which you only access the full extent of in Sport mode. In testing, we found that it’ll do 0-60mph in 7.1 seconds, which is a little better than the claimed figure. That sort of hearty acceleration feels a little incongruous in a car as practicality-focused as a Superb Estate, but the six-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox is smooth and shifts speeds when you expect it to.
More importantly, the Skoda feels responsive enough to satisfy in a fast merge or overtaking manoeuvre in any driving mode. Even in pure-electric mode, it’s sprightly away from the line and more than fast enough to feel comfortable right up to motorway speeds. The Superb iV is front-wheel drive; four-wheel-drive isn’t available and isn’t expected to be offered with this plug-in powertrain in the big Skoda.
The Skoda Superb isn’t by nature an exciting car. But even if you do go for a gutsy drive, enjoying Sport mode with its heavier steering and more aggressive gearbox shift points, the iV plug-in always feels within its comfort zone. Not thrilling, of course, but thanks to grippy, neutral handling from the front-wheel-drive chassis, it always inspires confidence and aids smooth progress.
Comfort is also very good. The Superb comes with adaptive dampers (which are notably an expensive option on the Volkswagen Passat GTE) that offer a fairly broad spread of suspension response. In Comfort, it’s very loose in terms of body control and can feel a little wallowy, but it works well over scruffy, slow-speed town roads.
The default Normal mode is a happy medium, while Sport tightens up body lean for usefully more controlled progress on a decent country road, although you’re always aware of the Superb’s significant size and weight.
In This Review
- 1VerdictRoomy, sweet to drive, good value by plug-in standards and efficient even with little charge, the Superb Estate is one of the best PHEVs there is
- 2Range, charging, MPG & CO2 emissionsFor both electric range and petrol-engine efficiency, the Superb iV plug-in hybrid is impressive and competitive with rivals
- 3Running costsThe Superb iV can look expensive next to non-electrified variants, but in comparison to plug-in hybrid alternatives, it’s fantastic value for money
- 4Engines, drive & performance - currently readingThe Superb iV plug-in hybrid isn’t thrilling to drive, but standard adaptive suspension is a great addition, giving it comfort and secure handling
- 5Interior & comfortThe Superb iV plug-in hybrid isn't as classy-feeling as a Volkswagen Passat GTE or BMW 330e, but it's still hard to fault
- 6Practicality & boot spaceThe plug-in hybrid Superb iV Estate is about as practical as cars get, provided you don’t want four-wheel drive
- 7Reliability & safetyThe Superb iV plug-in hybrid is generally good here, but we’d like lane-keeping assistance and traffic-sign recognition included as standard