Skoda is coming back into the small hatch market with the new incoming Scala, a replacement for its predecessor the Rapid.
Based on the same underpinnings as the new-generation Volkswagen Polo and a design inspired by the Vision RS concept debuted at the 2018 Paris motor show, Skoda says the all-new Scala opens a new chapter, setting benchmarks within its segment in terms of technology, safety and design.
The Skoda Scala will launch with three variants: the 110TSI, Monte Carlo, as well as a limited Launch Edition. All variants will share the same four-cylinder 1.5-litre 110kW/250Nm turbocharged petrol engine, with either a Manual 6-speed or Automatic 7-speed DSG transmission.
Both the engine and transmission are smooth and refined operators, with acceleration from 0 – 100km/h in 8.2 seconds and 8.3 seconds, and fuel economy rated at 4L / 100km and 5.5L / 100km (combined) for the Manual and Automatic transmissions respectively.
Starting off the variant range is the entry-level 110TSI, available with either a six-speed manual ($27,690 before on-road costs) or an optional seven-speed dual clutch (DSG) automatic (from $28,690).
Comparing starting prices, it’s clear that the Scala isn’t really aimed at the budget end of the market, as front runners like the Toyota Corolla ($23,335), Ford Focus ($23,490) and Mazda3 ($25,590) are cheaper. However, its main attraction lies in its generous offering of standard equipment and features.
Standard spec on the 110TSI includes a 8.0-inch multimedia touchscreen display infotainment system with Apple CarPlay / Android Auto / MirrorLink connectivity, Bluetooth, voice control, a 10.25-inch fully digital ‘Virtual Cockpit’ dashboard, leather-wrapped multi-function steering wheel, and cloth interior trim, and wireless charging bay for your phone.
Other key items that come standard include 18-inch alloy wheels, automated tailgate, rear parking sensors with reversing camera, LED tail lights and dynamic rear indicators, and tyre pressure monitoring.
Safety-wise all Scala’s are equipped with seven airbags and Isofix child seat anchor points. The standard active driver assistance safety suite includes Front Assist with city Emergency Brake (AEB), Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Keep Assist and Driver Fatigue Detection.
Then there are, of course, Skoda Perth’s usual Simply Clever design touches such as umbrellas hidden in the front doors, a parking ticket holder on the windscreen, and numerous storage compartments located throughout the cabin.
The higher grade Monte Carlo variant is priced from $33,390 and only available with the seven-speed DSG automatic. Like other Monte Carlo models in the Skoda line-up, the Scala Monte Carlo adds a sportier suspension and visual touches with a rally-inspired theme.
The Monte Carlo version features striking black-splashed exterior design with elements including a longer roof spoiler in black, and black rear diffuser, and a black front grille frame. The car is also characterised by other black features such as an add-on part on the front bumper, door sill covers and external side-view mirror caps, and 18-inch black alloy wheels. Full LED head- and tail-lights are also standard, as is an electronic panoramic sunroof.
Inside, the sportier theme continues with front sports seats, exclusive red/black upholstery and instrument panel in Monte Carlo design. Other standards include a multifunctional sports steering wheel in perforated leather with distinguished red stitching, a black ceiling, pedal covers in alloy design and LED ambient lighting in red, dual-zone climate control, keyless entry, and ‘Sport Chassis Control’ consisting of lowered suspension and a drive mode selector.
And finally, a fully loaded Launch Edition will be offered from $34,690 for a limited time. This variant also comes exclusively with the seven-speed DSG automatic.
The Launch Edition features body-colour matching mirrors, chrome highlights, leather/suede upholstery, unique 18-inch Vega Aero alloy wheels, heated front and rear seats, electric driver’s seat adjustment, and the higher-range Amundsen infotainment system on a larger 9.2-inch touchscreen that also includes gesture control and the new wireless Apple CarPlay support with its Wireless Smart Link feature.
Furthermore, the Launch Edition boasts extra standard driver assistance systems like Park Assist and Side Assist with blind spot detection that can spot rear cross traffic 70m away.
In addition to its unique styling inside and out, the Scala has the biggest boot space among its peers (a massive 467 litres versus 380L for the Golf and 217L for the Corolla).
In an era of sloping roof lines, tight back seat space, and small boots (as per the new Mazda 3 and Toyota Corolla) the Scala has managed to deliver a roomy, functional cabin in a hatch with elegant, sleek looks.
The Scala measures 4362mm in length, 1988mm in width, and 1471mm in height, riding on a wheelbase of 2649mm.
This makes it slightly longer than a Volkswagen Golf and offers, what Skoda claims, is the longest interior dimensions in its class. It is also noteworthy as this spacious size has been achieved despite being based, as previously mentioned, on the smaller Volkswagen Polo platform.
This fresh, all-new hatch is set to challenge the likes of the Volkswagen Golf, Mazda 3, Ford Focus and Toyota Corolla, with the core Skoda promise of more value for money.