- Superb iV PHEV based on hatchback in facelifted guise
- Plug-in hybrid, less than 40g/km CO2 and up to 34 mile electric range
- Rugged Superb Scout also joins the refreshed lineup
Skoda has announced its first plug-in hybrid vehicle (PHEV) – the new Superb iV. It adds the possibility of pure-electric driving plus greater efficiency to Skoda’s flagship large hatchback, and also launches the iV sub-brand, which will be used on electrified Skodas in future. The second model - the fully electric Skoda Citgo-e was unveiled at the same time.
Expanding the facelifted range further, the all-wheel drive Superb Scout completes a versatile selection of large, practical cars.
Skoda Superb iV: design changes
The Superb iV arrives alongside the third-generation Superb’s mid-life facelift, so like other derivatives it’s been given a mild nip and tuck in a bid to keep the design fresh. It’s subtle, but look closely and you’ll spot redesigned bumpers, a deeper front moustache grille and narrower headlights.
Those headlights have been upgraded to Matrix LED units on top models, while around the rear Skoda’s dispensed with its badge and instead opted to write SKODA across the width of the tailgate. Inside, little has changed, but buyers can now spec high-end kit such as digital dials and a wireless charging pad.
As for the iV PHEV model, design changes extend only to a honeycomb pattern in the front air intakes and some new badging. The charging socket is hidden behind a flap in the front grille.
Skoda Superb iV: new hybrid powertrain
While the facelifted Superb range retains a broad choice of engines – there are three petrols and three diesels, ranging from a 120hp 1.6-litre diesel to a flagship 282hp 2.0-litre petrol – the big news is the new plug-in hybrid powertrain. It’s a refinement of the system used in Volkswagen’s Golf and Passat GTE models, as well as the Audi A3 Sportback E-Tron, and it pairs a 1.4-litre TFSI petrol engine to an electric motor and battery pack.
Combined output of the two motors is 218hp, but it has a chunky 400Nm of torque – which means it actually has more outright pulling power than the most powerful 2.0-litre petrol.
Skoda Superb iV: range and charging
Skoda claims that the Superb iV will be capable of 34 miles on its battery pack alone, under WLTP - closer to real-world - testing. The 13kWh battery can be charged overnight from a standard three-pin wall socket or in 3.5 hours from a standard wall box.
A combined fuel economy figure hasn’t been released yet, but Skoda claims CO2 emissions of less than 40g/km – and if left to choose its own power source, a total system range of almost 530 miles on a full tank and a full charge.
Skoda Superb iV: equipment
Skoda’s reserved two pieces of optional equipment exclusively for the Superb iV. The first is a 360-degree camera system, to aid when parking this big car – we suspect it will come in particularly handy when lining up in an electric charging bay. The other is Trailer Assist, a system inherited from Volkswagen. It allows the car to take charge of reversing a trailer or caravan, with the driver indicating where they’d like to go via the electric door mirror control’s joystick.
Skoda Superb iV: pricing and release date
There’s been no word on pricing for the Superb iV, but we’d expect it to sit near to or at the top of the current range. It’s only the second most-powerful engine option, but the cost of those batteries and electric motors could push the price up to the region of the top-end 2.0-litre petrol. However, low running costs and low company car tax could offset this for many.
Production of the Superb iV will begin in August, and the car will go on sale early in 2020.
The new model is the first part of a serious push towards electrification for Skoda. By 2022, the brand aims to have launched ten new electrified models badged as iV – self-charging hybrids, plug-in hybrids and pure-electric models. By 2025, Skoda expects a quarter of its sales to come from the iV sub-brand.
In addition to the facelift Skoda's expanded its crossover offering with the Superb Scout. This is the first time a Scout model's been offered on the third-generation Superb, and joins the smaller Octavia Scout in providing a degree of SUV agility without stepping-up to a Kodiaq.
As with the Octavia Scout, the Superb Scout is offered only in estate form and sees a layer of ruggedness added. In addition to all-wheel drive, Scout models get a raised ride height with 15mm of extra ground clearance and a chunky bodykit with new bumpers and skid plates front and rear.
There's some added underbody protection, though this is no Subaru Outback – it's unlikely to tackle much more than a rutted track without complaining. Still, power should be ample – it's offered only with the two most potent powertrains, the 190hp diesel and the 272hp petrol. Both engines are paired to Skoda's seven-speed DSG transmission.
It's certainly eye-catching, though, and Skoda will offer an exclusive shade of Tangerine Orange to further distinguish it. The interior's undergone a makeover, too, getting polished wooden trim on the dash and centre console. As with the remainder of the Superb range, pricing has not yet been announced.