Skoda Superb Ambition TDi CR Superbly Affordable?
The Skoda Superb has been around for a while now and is one of the best buys in its segment in terms of comfort, build quality and ownership value. Skoda was under the onslaught from the competition that included its cousin the recently launched New Hyundai Sonata, New VW Passat and the Honda Accord to some extent.
In a move to counter this competition Skoda has in a swift move has introduced a base version of the Superb which is the Skoda Superb Ambition. The Skoda Superb Ambition is available with the 2.0 Liter TDi CR Diesel engine and the 2.0Liter TSi Petrol engine and the price difference between Ambition diesel over the fully loaded Elegance version is that of nearly Rs 1.50 Lakh. We got our hands on the Skoda Superb Ambition 2.0Liter Diesel Automatic to investigate what goes out and what still remains on the Superb. Let’s find out if the Superb Ambition with the big price cut now becomes the best buy in the segment or not. Read on.
The Skoda Superb has always been known for its large XXL dimensions. The Skoda Superb now in its second generation has an overall length of 4838mm and is 1817mm wide and stands at 1482mm in height. The Superb has a long stretched wheelbase that of 2761mm giving it the stretched limousine like look when seen from the sides. The exterior design on the Skoda Superb Ambition remains the same. It is impossible to judge from the outside about the variant of the car and the Superb does not carry any variant badging either. The family’s front face with the classic Skoda grill retains itself along with the chrome inserts across the grill and the lower on the air dam.
The Bi-Xenon headlights are now replaced with the Halogen Projector headlamps. The headlight washers are also given the stick and the Skoda Superb Ambition comes sans the washers. The headlights retain the auto On/Off feature as on the Superb Elegance. The front fog lamps also remain on the Skoda Superb Ambition along with the cornering feature (Turn Lights) on them. The exteriors of the Skoda Superb Ambition retain the auto fold wing mirror with integrated turn lights.
These wing mirrors also have auto dimming feature which comes very handy while driving at nights when the car following you flashes high beam. The wing mirrors also have the defogger function. The sides of the Superb Ambition retain the chrome door strip that gives the rich look to the profile. The windows get the chrome detailing around them while the pillars are blacked out identical to that on the fully loaded Skoda Superb Elegance. The Skoda Superb Ambition retains the same tyre spec as on the Elegance that of 205/55 R16.
The Superb Ambition gets the 5 spoke Spectrum alloy wheels which are of different design. The Skoda Superb Ambition as mentioned gets the full chrome package on its exteriors and the boot lid has a thick strip running across it with SUPERB inscribed over it along with the large Skoda brand logo.
The Superb Ambition retains the soft glow look tail lamps along with the chrome tipped twin exhaust pipes. Sun/moon roof is omitted from the Superb Ambitions top and so is the fish tail radio antenna which is now replaced with the printed antenna. The Skoda Superb is known for its twin opening boot lid and the Superb Ambition retains the Twin Opening boot with soft close. The Superb Ambition gets only the rear park sensors while the top end Superb Elegance has both front and rear parking sensors.
The build quality on the Skoda Superb Ambition is at par with the Superb Elegance and there is zero cost cutting on the build and paint quality. A few features are omitted as mentioned but from the outside it is practically impossible to judge that the car you watching is the base Superb Ambition.
The Skoda Superb is regarded as the benchmark for in cabin comfort and build quality and the Superb Ambition also stands by those qualities. The light beige Nappa Leather seats are retained. The drivers and front passenger seats are fully electrically adjustable for height, reach and back rest tilt. The back lumbar support adjusts is also retained on the Superb Ambition. The driver seat comes with programmable pre-set seating positions for 3 memory settings.
The Skoda Superb Ambition misses out on the multi function controls on the steering wheel and gets a normal leather steering. The steering still is chunky to grip and gives a good rich feel. The steering can be manually adjusted for height and reach. The speedo cluster remains the same on the Ambition as on the Elegance Superb.
The steering gets a dash of chrome on it that puts in the rich look on it. The twin pod speedo gets the chrome insert lining and the multi function display in the middle of the RPM and odometer. The Skoda Superb Ambition gets the same dual colour dashboard as on the Superb Elegance. The black-beige combo on the dash has wood inserts in the middle.
This combination is carried on the door pads too. The dash is made of soft material plastic material and this is what makes the cabin special and also helps in sound insulation. The Superb Ambition misses out on the Cruise control. The switchgear is retained on the Superb Ambition, quality of the switches is top notch and everything is precisely built to last till eternity. The auto headlamps function is standard while the Superb Ambition gets a single CD/Radio system as opposed to the 6 CD changer system on the Elegance.
This Skoda Swing single CD player plays through eight speakers. The AUX port is standard on the Superb Ambition while we missed an USB port on here. The climate control unit remains the same with Dual Climate control along with two blowers for the rear occupant’s mounted on the B pillars on the doors as on the Superb Elegance. The Skoda Superb Ambition Diesel comes with a 6 speed DSG automatic transmission. The auto shifter is identical to the one on the Superb Elegance with leather and chrome making its looks very rich.
The seats are comfortable as ever on the Superb offering well under thigh support and lower back angle for those long drives. Visibility is perfect from the driver’s seat and the foot pedals are placed with comfortable distance between them. Space is abundant inside the cabin of the Superb with miles of legroom available for the rear passengers. Comfort level is very high in the Skoda Superb’s cabin and there is no cost cutting evident on its in-cabin materials and build quality. The front seats get a center arm rest with storage space under it and for the rear passengers there is a foldable arm rest with some amount of storage in it. The rear seats come with three adjustable headrests. The retractable sunscreen on the rear windows and the rear windshield are standard on the Superb Ambition as on the Superb Elegance.
The Skoda Superb Ambition retains the rear centre clock-outside temperature display as on the Superb Elegance. The automatic rain sensing wipers are also standard on the Superb Ambition. All the in-cabin lighting package that’s there on the Superb Elegance is retained on the Superb Ambition which includes the Cat Vision (under dash, seats) lights, footwell lights, door pad warning lights, reading lamps, vanity mirror lamp, glove box light and the boot light.
Speaking of the boot, the Skoda Superb has one of the largest boot space in the segment with a load capacity of 565liters that can be increased to 1700liters with the rear seats folded down. The loading-unloading opening in the boot is also the best thanks to the twin opening boot lid. The Skoda Superb Ambition has a one of the best built cabin in terms of quality and comfort.
Engine – Transmission – Drive
The technical specifications for the Skoda Superb Ambition remain the same for the Petrol and Diesel variants. We drove the Diesel Superb Ambition that is powered by a 1968cc Turbocharged diesel engine that has 140Ps of power @ 4200 RPM and hits out 320Nm of torque between the 1750 to 2500 RPM. This latest generation CR TDi Diesel engine is mated to the renowned 6 speed DSG (Dual Clutch) automatic transmission with Tip-Tronic feature for manual shifting.
The 2.0 Liter Superb’s Diesel engine is silent at idle and an ever performing unit. The power delivery is linear with loads of torque available across all speeds. Overtaking is a pleasure on the Skoda Superb with the vehicle galloping ahead with slight tap on the throttle. The DSG gearbox shifts gear perfectly in tandem with the speeds and the varied RPM. The gear shifts are not felt due to the intelligent DSG transmission that uses a twin clutch mechanism that shifts 1-3-5 gears on one clutch and 2-4-6 gears on the second clutch. The steering feedback is equally weighted and feels lively and driving a car this big in heavy traffic and small by lanes is a child’s job.
The suspension set up on the Skoda Superb Ambition also remains the same with McPherson suspension with lower triangular links and torsion stabiliser on the front and Multi-element axle, with one longitudinal and three transverse links, with torsion stabiliser on the rear doing their duty perfectly. The ride quality feels very comfortable and the Superb drives over bad roads rather superbly. High speed stability is top notch and so is the braking which is an all disc set up.
The Skoda Superb Ambition has not been compromised on the safety department. All safety features present on the Superb Elegance are also found on the Superb Ambition. The Superb Ambition comes with front dual airbags, side airbags for front and rear and curtain airbags. Height adjustable seatbelts are standard along with active front head restraints. ABS braking is standard along with EBD (Electronic Brake Distribution). As mentioned earlier the Superb Ambition comes with rear park sensors while the front sensors are omitted.
The Skoda Superb has always been one of the best Luxury Sedans in the segment and a benchmark of sorts for the rear seat comfort, drive quality and its upmarket build quality. With the Superb Ambition Skoda is now offering the same virtues at a price cut. Some features may be missing but the basic USP that of comfort, quality and brand value are fully retained on the Skoda Superb Ambition.
With the price for the Skoda Superb Ambition Petrol starting at Rs. 17.60lakhs and the Diesel version of the Superb Ambition DSG Automatic that we tested priced at Rs. 22.50lakhs Ex Showroom surely makes it a steal among the lot.