By Mike Torpey on 2016-01-17 - Driving Force news editor and responsible for organising our daily output. He was staff motoring editor of the Liverpool Echo for 20 years.
Skoda Superb 2.0 TDI
TRAVELLING Business Class has become an integral part of the Skoda experience these days - especially when it comes to the brand's flagship Superb version.
Now into its third generation the Superb has grown into a model line that truly does justice to its title.
From the fit and finish of the cabin, which is on a par with its premium label Volkswagen group stablemates, to its exterior styling, interior space and ‘Simply Clever' features, the Superb is an executive level vehicle at a working man's price.
The latest version arrived during the autumn with the promise of more technology, improved economy and added value.
So it's an altogether larger car with even more legroom than before along with a boot that can hold up to a whopping 1,760 litres of stuff.
And in Skoda's quest to make everything safe, tidy and accessible, there are innovations like compartments containing a brolley inside each front door, a cooled glovebox, an ice scraper inside the fuel filler cap and a magnetic torch that automatically recharges when the engine is running.
That's in addition to a foldaway towbar, four door bins capable of holding a 1.5-litre bottle, a sunglasses compartment and a Jumbo Box in the centre console. All smart stuff.
But Skoda also recognises that a high percentage of Superb drivers are part of the fleet market, so there's a Superb model grade designed specifically to cater for company car drivers - the SE Business.
This variant, based on SE trim, adds stuff like Alcantara upholstery, parking sensors and sunset glass to help keep occupants cool.
There's also a touchscreen sat-nav, Bluetooth and SmartLink, which integrates mobile phone functions via Apple CarPlay, MirrorLink and Google Android Auto, plus Drive mode for selecting between Eco, Sport or Normal driving profiles.
And from this year, a phone box with wireless charging and an enhanced mobile signal will also be standard, meaning driver's phones will always be charged without the need to plug in.
Yet despite the extras, SE Business versions cost the same as SE models, starting with the 120ps 1.6-litre diesel hatchback at £21,590.
Also up for grabs are an extra-clean 1.6 Greenline model emitting just 95g/km of CO2 and returning an average 76.4mpg for £22,255.
The Greenline bit is Skoda's take on keeping things extra clean and includes optimised gearing, special aerodynamic components and low rolling resistance tyres.
Then there is the tested 2.0-litre diesel. With six-speed manual or the VW group's DSG twin clutch auto transmission available, it is a magnificent car to drive - quick, comfortable, precise and a pleasure to pilot whether the trip be a short hop to the shops or a motorway marathon.
Skoda Superb 2.0 TDI SE Business
Mechanical: 150ps, 1,968cc, 4-cyl diesel engine driving front wheels via 6-speed manual transmission
Max Speed: 137mph
0-62mph: 8.8 seconds
Combined MPG: 68.9mpg
Insurance Group: 108g/km
C02 emissions: 19%
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