Skoda Superb hatchback (2008-2015)
- Masses of space
- Affordable prices
- Efficient engines
- Dull styling
- No badge appeal
- Could be more fun to drive
"The Skoda Superb looks understated, but offers bags of space for all the family, along with a wide choice of fuel-efficient engines and excellent build quality."
The Skoda Superb is one of our favourite large family cars. And judging by the results of our Driver Power customer satisfaction survey, owners love their Superbs, too. The Superb is part-saloon, part-hatchback by virtue of a clever bootlid that can open in two ways. But the quirky bootlid is only part of the appeal. Few family cars offer so much interior space – particularly in the back seats – and cosseting suspension makes the Superb as comfortable as a luxury car costing three times as much.
It's not perfect, of course: Skoda has placed more emphasis on comfort than a sporty drive, so both the Ford Mondeo and Mazda6 are better in this regard. But the Superb's appeal is far subtler than that.
Where its rivals can't compete is for sheer size and practicality. Indeed, there are much bigger models that offer no more space inside. If you prize comfort and refinement over all else, the Superb is hard to ignore.
Luxury-car refinement coupled with a range of efficient diesel engines means the Superb is an excellent motorway cruiser, too. Pick of the bunch for long-distance drivers are either of the 2.0-litre diesels, while those seeking ultimate refinement – if not the lowest running costs – should consider the 1.8-litre turbocharged petrol engine.
The Superb in SE specification strikes the best balance between price and equipment, and is offered with a wider range of engines than the rather basic S trim. Elegance models are a little pricier, but provide a range of luxury-car features.
Safety credentials impress, too, with plenty of airbags and a number of electronic features designed to improve grip. The Superb was awarded a full five-star rating by safety body Euro NCAP.
Shortcomings are few and far between, but some drivers might find the Superb a little difficult to park, and the clever saloon/hatchback bootlid means it looks awkward from some angles. Look beyond this, though, and you'll enjoy one of our favourite big cars.
If you avoid the range topping 3.6-litre V6 4x4 model, which is fast but painfully expensive, the Superb is generally cheap to run
The Skoda Superb is more of a comfortable long-distance cruiser than a sporty saloon car
The Skoda Superb has a conservatively styled interior, but all models – bar the entry-level S – are well equipped
Huge amounts of interior space and a large boot mean the Skoda Superb is one of the most practical cars of its type
The Skoda Superb has very satisfied owners and a five-star safety rating