PRAGUE, July 18 — On the face of it, Skoda launching some new engine options for fleet buyers of the Octavia and Superb SE Technology models might not raise an eyebrow in many parts. But when it becomes apparent these are petrol and not diesel engines, it's easy to see how the motoring landscape is changing.
Until recently, fleet buyers wouldn't have been interested in anything but diesels as they were so much more fuel-efficient and the taxes on them were so much lower. All of that is changing now though, and modern, efficient and relatively small-displacement turbocharged petrol engines are now finding considerable favor.
Fleet customers can now take advantage of new petrol engine options for both SE Tech hatch and estate body styles of the multi-award winning Octavia and Superb models.
This new generation of direct-injected and turbocharged TSI petrol units is billed as offering refinement, performance and flexibility, as well as a quiet, fuel-efficient and dynamic drive that's especially suitable for high-speed motorways or country roads.
The Octavia Estate will be offered with a 1.0 TSI 115PS DSG with a seven speed automatic gearbox, which is rated as high for fuel-economy as 65.7 mpg combined, only puts out 108 g/km of CO2, and has enough power to get from 0-62 mph in 10.2 seconds.
There will also be a 1.4 TSI 150PS with manual and DSG gearbox options. From July 26 there will be an all-new 1.5 litre engine equipped with active cylinder technology and available with a manual gearbox, with a DSG version arriving in the autumn.
The Skoda Superb can now be had with a 1.4 TSI engine that produces a very healthy 150PS and gets you from 0-62mph in just under nine seconds.
Skoda's head of fleet, Henry Williams, said of the new engine options: "We have added petrol engines to the Skoda fleet range due to increasing demand from customers. Octavia and Superb already offer a formidable package and by adding even more choice we are demonstrating our commitment to respond to the changing market and the needs of our customers."
The market is indeed changing, but fleets choosing petrols over diesels in Europe is really more of a seismic shift than a subtle change, and it looks as though this may well be only the start of what's to come. — AFP-Relaxnews