WHEN a car maker decides to call one of its vehicles Scout you would expect it to be pretty good in the great outdoors.
And the new Skoda Octavia Scout is well equipped to do just that, coming as it does with four-wheel-drive and extra ground clearance for when the going gets tough.
But this variation on the normal Octavia Estate offers more than just great traction off-road - it's a pretty exciting drive on the highway too.
The fun comes from the most powerful version of Skoda's 2.0-litre, four cylinder diesel engine with 184ps.
Mated to a six-speed DSG gearbox it delivers impressive acceleration - particularly if the gearshift is slipped into Sport - hitting 62 miles per hour in just 7.8 seconds.
And while you might think that the extra 33mm of height of the Scout results in a little wallowing on bends you couldn't be more wrong.
The firm, sporting suspension and four-wheel-drive ensure that this car has plenty of traction and stability when you need it at speed and in the mud.
In fact the Scout is a nice blend of performance and toughness which will tick the boxes of a lot of people.
Add to that the generous interior space and you can soon justify the close on £30,000 price tag.
A generous five-seater it also comes with a huge luggage area capable of accommodating some 590 litres of goods with the seats upright and a vast 1,580 with the rear seatbacks folded down.
In fact it's a family car that you can transform into the equivalent of a small van.
Distinguishing it from the normal Octavia Estate the Scout has special cladding around the wheel arches and sills as well as underbody protection plates front and rear and silver roof rails.
Inside, however, the ruggedness is replaced by luxury with high quality leather and Alcantara upholstery - with the Scout name embossed into it - giving it a very upmarket image.
This tough estate offers drivers the chance to select their own driving mode with a choice of eco, normal, sport and off road as well as the flexibility to create individual settings.
Opt for sport and not only is the acceleration more dynamic but so is the response of the headlights at night.
Switch to off-road and you get the added security of hill descent control to keep the car in check on the steepest of gradients, whether it's going forwards or in reverse.
The Scout comes with a host of features which make it easy to live with including a touchscreen satellite navigation system, cruise control and heavily tinted side windows.
Then there's the chance to personalise it with a wide variety of optional extras. This car, for example, had the sensible winter pack (Â£600) which gives you heated front seats, heated washer nozzles and - something every car in Britain should have - a heated windscreen.