The Skoda Octavia vRS is getting its most powerful diesel engine ever in the form of a 197 hp 2.0-liter TDI.
The diesel joins the gas and a hybrid versions and is about 15 hp more powerful than its predecessor. Although it makes less power than the 245 hp 2.0 TSI, its strong torque output of 295 lb-ft (2.0 TSI: 273 lb-ft) should help it off the line.
And that comes down to clever engineering. An aluminum block helps keep weight down and low-friction piston rings help keep things spinning. A water-cooled turbo helps ensure that performance stays strong, and a seven-speed DSG gearbox helps speed up shifts.
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Power is sent to all four wheels via a multiplate clutch. The improved design is nearly one kilo lighter than in previous vehicles and uses low-friction oil, reduced bearing preload, and refined internals to help the car roll as freely as possible.
That all means that the control electronics can react faster than ever, keeping traction where it needs to be. Skoda is even using the differentials to funnel more power to the outside wheels in corners to help push the Octavia vRS around them faster.
Visually, there will be no easy way to differentiate the diesel vRS from the gas or hybrid versions. All three get a double-slat radiator grille, a lower air diffusor, and air curtains over the front fog lights.
They also all get gloss black trim around the windows, mirror housings, and roof bars, as well as gloss black aero flaps around back, as well as a black diffusor and spoiler. Chrome exhaust tips and vRS badging also alert passersby to the car’s performance.
Prices start at £32,260 in the UK, or a nearly £2,000 more than the gas version.