This car has been superseded by a newer model, click here to go to the latest Skoda Octavia Scout review.

Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0

Even though there’s a wide range of engines available for the Octavia, there’s just a couple for the Scout version. But they are both good options. The 2.0-litre FSI petrol has 150bhp and is a smooth and willing engine. It powers the Scout to 62mph in 10 seconds and onto a top speed of 124mph. It's thirsty though (32mpg) and so it's little surprise that nearly all buyers opt for the 2.0 TDI.

This has less power with 140bhp but much better torque (pulling power) and performs similarly, with a 0-62mph time of 10.2 seconds. It delivers its power in a different way with plenty of low-down muscle for muddy tracks and getting out of ruts. It's a much better option for buyers who will spend most of their time off-road. It's also more economical with an average of 44mpg possible, making it the better choice for the high mileage driver.

Both cars have a six-speed manual gearbox, but no automatic is available. In 2009 the 2.0 FSI was replaced by a 1.8 TSI with 160bhp. This turbocharged engine is far quicker with a 0-62mph time of 8.4 seconds but is also more economical with an average of 36mpg.

The Scout isn’t built for serious off-roading, but is capable enough to tackle ruts in muddy tracks, snow and unmade roads thanks to raised suspension and a clever four-wheel drive system. The 4x4 system is almost idiot-proof and requires no thought from the driver. It senses when a wheel is slipping and applies extra pulling power to the wheels with the best grip to keep the car moving.

The Octavia Scout is also fitted with 'Hill Hold Control'. This device stops the car rolling back when you're on a hill and about to pull away. It holds the brake for a few seconds, so the car doesn't move as your foot moves between the brake and accelerator pedals. When it comes to on-road driving, the Octavia Scout corners with an agility that traditional off-roaders find hard to match.

It's also competent and comfortable on the motorway.