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Octavia Or Passat Estates


jan69c
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I have recently been driving a 2001 Skoda Octavia with 257k on the clock, and I have to say that I am most impressed with the way the car drives, and I am staggered by how good the fuel consumption is, 600 miles around town (Taxiing) on about £45-50. In the Terrano that would have cost £140! Possibly more. I have decided that come the end of the year the Terrano is going, the eldest lad should be driving himself, so a seven seater is no longer a necessity. I have been looking at car prices and second hand the Passat and the Skoda come in at aroundf the same sort of money.

Our van has a MTPLM of 1250kg so either car would be a suitable match. If anyone tows with either of the two cars, what is your opinion ? Years ago I used to tow a very heavy trailer with an Austin Montego 1. 6 and to be truthful it wasn't a very pleasant experience. And our last car wasn't much better, a Mitsubishi Space wagon. The rear suspension on the Space wagon wobbled like a jelly. I assume the bad towing was down to bad matching, and bad loading. I have learned a lot since then.

I dont want to buy a car and find out it doesn't tow well so any advice or opinions would be great.

Regards
Ian

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I don't know if it's still true but the early Skoda Octavia Estates had low noseweights and long overhang due to using the Golf as a base.

 

I've driven both but towed with neither - I'd look seriously at the Passat.

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The Octavia still had some stability issues last time I saw one tested in the TCOY, but I don`t know if that would neccessarily show up if you`re not towing at its limit.

I have a Passat Estate (current model), now with 52 k on the clock, and for stability it is faultless. A couple of points though, the Sport spec with its stiffer, lower suspension is worth having as it is noticeably better with a van on the back, and the 1. 9TDI is a bit of a nail, being loud, not particularly responsive but economical. The downside is the thing isn`t as well built as the last ones, and in 2. 0TDI form not that special on fuel. Make sure all the recalls have been done as well!

 

If you want specifics, just ask.

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The Octavia still had some stability issues last time I saw one tested in the TCOY, but I don`t know if that would neccessarily show up if you`re not towing at its limit.

I have a Passat Estate (current model), now with 52 k on the clock, and for stability it is faultless. A couple of points though, the Sport spec with its stiffer, lower suspension is worth having as it is noticeably better with a van on the back, and the 1. 9TDI is a bit of a nail, being loud, not particularly responsive but economical. The downside is the thing isn`t as well built as the last ones, and in 2. 0TDI form not that special on fuel. Make sure all the recalls have been done as well!

 

If you want specifics, just ask.

At the risk of being branded cynical, the TCOY test isn't "towing at the limit" - caravans are ballasted to 85% which is the Towing Code recommendation for beginners - testing at 100% by experienced caravanners would be more likely to show up shortcomings in any vehicle.

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Point taken, Roger, although that only makes it more prone to instability at its limit then, one would presume?

 

I`m not adopting an anti-Skoda stance should anyone suggest that, I was seriously tempted by a diesel VRS estate when I got the Passat, but they were like hens teeth at the time, and I still had a nagging doubt over stability with a 1150kg van. We`ve since changed to a 1375kg van with a much bigger `sail` area and I don`t think I would have been as comfortable dragging that with the smaller, lighter Skoda.

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I have towed with the Octavia - it is more like a roller coaster ride! i was up to the limit though but could not afford another tow car so towed with it for 2 years. I did get used to it but my wife never felt safe towing with the Octavia.

 

I have posted on here about the odd towing characteristics of the Octavia and basically i found that the towing weight was not as relevent as the suspension. Basically it is terrible for towing with - far too much bounce. My outfit towed much better when I drove on my own and the car was unloaded with the caravan loaded to the max! - I told you it was odd!

 

The 1. 9 DCI engine is very good and reliable. The same engine is in both the Octavia and Passat. However the Passat ECU is different and so it has worse fuel economy but more torque and HP. This reflects the towing limits 1400 for the octavia and 1600 for the Passat.

 

Go for the passat. If you go for the octavia, get spring assistors fitted and the VRS spec suspension. You could also get a remap to increase power from theengine.

 

One last thing about the PD engines, they are thirsty for oil and require a specialised fully synthetic multigrade. The cheapest I have seen is £40 for 5ltrs - nearly £80 for the VW approved one. They will require topping up between services. Since the oil price is so expensive, many people are tempted to put in ordinary semi-synth or mineral which will have disasterous consequences for the engine. With this in mind, if you are going second hand, ensure a full service history from a VAG dealer.

 

Regards

Lee

Please note that my opinions stated are those of an enthusiast not an expert and humble at that

 

2006 Hyundai Sante Fe towing a Coachman Vision 580/5

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One last thing about the PD engines, they are thirsty for oil and require a specialised fully synthetic multigrade. The cheapest I have seen is £40 for 5ltrs - nearly £80 for the VW approved one. They will require topping up between services. Since the oil price is so expensive, many people are tempted to put in ordinary semi-synth or mineral which will have disasterous consequences for the engine. With this in mind, if you are going second hand, ensure a full service history from a VAG dealer.

 

Regards

Lee

 

Unless you are on variable servicing,an oil to VW 505. 01 (semi synthetic) such as Millers XFE PD at £25 for 5ltr is fine. Most oil companies offer VW specs. Variable servicing requires oil to VW spec 506 (fully synthetic)Millers is £40 for 5ltr. We have owned our PD130 since new and it uses negligible oil, less than 1/2ltr/year,thats around 7k miles.

The PD engines must have oil with high shear properties due to the loads imposed on the camshaft by the high pressure injector pumps.

The PD130s are excellent tow cars. The Ss and SEs need either MAD or Grayston auxilliary springs on the rear. The sport suspension is stiff enough, if a little on the low side.

 

Best,

Frank

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Unless you are on variable servicing,an oil to VW 505. 01 (semi synthetic) such as Millers XFE PD at £25 for 5ltr is fine. Most oil companies offer VW specs. Variable servicing requires oil to VW spec 506 (fully synthetic)Millers is £40 for 5ltr. We have owned our PD130 since new and it uses negligible oil, less than 1/2ltr/year,thats around 7k miles.

The PD engines must have oil with high shear properties due to the loads imposed on the camshaft by the high pressure injector pumps.

The PD130s are excellent tow cars. The Ss and SEs need either MAD or Grayston auxilliary springs on the rear. The sport suspension is stiff enough, if a little on the low side.

 

Best,

Frank

I would agree with most of what has been said but my octavia is very thirsty for oil compared to previous cars i have owned. I did have the variable servicing schedule in place which uses the 5/30 oil. I would go through about 4 litres of oil in top ups before each service - i was doing about 20K per year. Servicing was every 9 months or thereabouts. Oil consumption did drop a bit to about 3 litres between services, once the enigne had done over 50K miles.

 

Regards

Lee

Please note that my opinions stated are those of an enthusiast not an expert and humble at that

 

2006 Hyundai Sante Fe towing a Coachman Vision 580/5

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They are both great cars solo, but they don't seem to be so good towing. May have to have a rethink, mind u I have planty of time to look around.

Regards
Ian

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The 1. 9 DCI engine is very good and reliable. The same engine is in both the Octavia and Passat. However the Passat ECU is different and so it has worse fuel economy but more torque and HP. This reflects the towing limits 1400 for the octavia and 1600 for the Passat.

 

Not quite correct.

 

The old shape Diesel Octavia came in three VAG varients, exactly the same engines as fitted to the earlier Passatts and across the VAG range, no special software.

 

The 90bhp and 110bhp TDi's were direct injection units with old tech injector pump, the 110 unit had a bigger variable vane turbo charger. Towards the end of the old shape Octavia's life Skoda fitted the PD130 (Pump Duse) engine and six speed gearbox. This was the full torque unit and not the limited unit that is fitted to some Passat's with 5 speed gearboxes.

Skoda never fitted the old Octavia with the PD115bhp engine that the Passat had.

 

The old 110bhp engine still holds the record as the most thermally efficient internal combustion engine fiited to a saloon car. I could easily achieve 60mpg out of the one I had quite a few years ago. Performance is not in the same league as the Pump Duse or Common Rail engined cars though. Refinement is not in the same league as PD or CR engine either.

Towing wise, the long rear overhang gives the caravans nose weight a big lever to bounce the rear up and down, I fitted Grayston coli assiters and a set of VRS dampers which improved things greatly. Also fitted a switchable tuning box to give a bit more performance when towing.

Just have to remember that the Passat is a lot bigger car, the Octavia uses the VW Bora platform which is basically a Golf with a boot.

 

The new Octavia has the VAG family 1. 9PD105 engine, this engine is now the only 1. 9VAG diesel available, the PD130 couldn't meet the new emmision standards.

Skoda have fitted the 2. 0 diesel engine in the Octavia but the 140bhp version is the older PD version and can't match the refinement and spread of torque as the better CR engines. The 2. 0 170bhp diesel in the Octavia is the new CR engine. It's been mentioned that the Octavia may get the 2. 0 140bhp common rail engine some time later this year.

 

For any info on Octavia's have a look over at www. briskoda. co. uk

 

Cheers

Lee

Edited by logiclee

Yeti 2.0TDi EU6 150 DSG 4X4 L&K, Octavia TSi Manual, Fabia TSi DSG, Swift Challenger.

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I have towed with two Octavias.

 

A 57 plate vRS TDi 170 Estate with the old PD engine and now an 09 vRS TDi hatch with the common rail engine.

 

The 57 plate towed 5000 miles in 18 months (30000 miles in total) and never missed a beat. Stability was perfect, performace excellent and good economy too (46 solo, 29 towing).

 

The new 09 plate has covered 2500 miles, about 700 towing. The new CR engine is smoother, quieter and more economical (50 solo, 33 towing but this should improve as the miles pile on). The power deliver is smoother and I feel it has the edge for towing.

 

That said if I had to swap back to the PD tomorrow I wouldn't be upset.

 

I personally feel that for us the Octy is the better car than the Passat (and considerably better value) . .. others may disagree . .. but you pay your money and make your choice.

 

Can also recommend the briskoda website as a mine of info.

2010 Volvo XC70 D5 SE Lux (2012 V60 D5 All Wheel Drive R Design after March 12!)

2012 Swift Conqueror 480, with Omnivent, Mini Heki in Loo, Mudflaps and ALKO Mammut Mover

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I am still tempted, but have a lot of time to make up my mind. But I am also looking at Hyundai's new Santa Fe.

Economy wise anything must be better than the Terrano.

Regards
Ian

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I have towed with the Octavia - it is more like a roller coaster ride! i was up to the limit though but could not afford another tow car so towed with it for 2 years. I did get used to it but my wife never felt safe towing with the Octavia.

 

I have posted on here about the odd towing characteristics of the Octavia and basically i found that the towing weight was not as relevent as the suspension. Basically it is terrible for towing with - far too much bounce. My outfit towed much better when I drove on my own and the car was unloaded with the caravan loaded to the max! - I told you it was odd!

 

The 1. 9 DCI engine is very good and reliable. The same engine is in both the Octavia and Passat. However the Passat ECU is different and so it has worse fuel economy but more torque and HP. This reflects the towing limits 1400 for the octavia and 1600 for the Passat.

 

Go for the passat. If you go for the octavia, get spring assistors fitted and the VRS spec suspension. You could also get a remap to increase power from theengine.

 

One last thing about the PD engines, they are thirsty for oil and require a specialised fully synthetic multigrade. The cheapest I have seen is £40 for 5ltrs - nearly £80 for the VW approved one. They will require topping up between services. Since the oil price is so expensive, many people are tempted to put in ordinary semi-synth or mineral which will have disasterous consequences for the engine. With this in mind, if you are going second hand, ensure a full service history from a VAG dealer.

 

Regards

Lee

 

Have Octavia Elegance 2. 0 140 bhp dsg box, have now done 31500 miles including 6000 towing our Coachman 1350 klg. Most of the miles done was abroad and included steep climbs at times. Fuel consumption at 60 mph has been in region of 28/30 mpg, solo 45/50 average at all speeds. Never noticed any movements like you desribed, our noseweight is 75 klg. With the dsg and cruise control its armchair driving on motorways. Best car we have had, last one x-trail 2. 5 auto 04 reg mpg terrible .

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We drive 15k per year in the car. Of which only 3k max is towing. The kids are all getting older and don't want to tag along with us everywhere, and besides the oldest should be on the road himself by the time we change. An estate car should do us fine. Themore mileage I am clocking up in this Skoda I am using, the more I am impressed. The car I am driving this week has 294 k on the clock, it is a W reg 90bhp. The only downside is the gearbox bearings are getting a little worn and noisy. Our local Skoda dealer says he uses one for towing his caravan, he could be a bull*******. Im going to see if I can have an extended test drive with my van on the back, there are a couple on the forecourt with tow bars on.

Regards
Ian

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Hi. I'm new to this forum, but have been looking at your posts with interest.

 

I have a Skoda Estate 2. 0 Petrol 2001 model, and am thinking of buying an Abbey 214 GTS 4 Berth (1992) with an unladen weight of 1237KG (I think!)

 

Would this be a good match? The website WhatTowCar. com doesn't seem to think so and says I'm 137KG overweight.

 

I am a novice at towing.

 

Do you think I could handle this caravan?

 

Any tips on loading both caravan and car?

 

Thanks in anticipation.

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Hi. I'm new to this forum, but have been looking at your posts with interest.

 

I have a Skoda Estate 2. 0 Petrol 2001 model, and am thinking of buying an Abbey 214 GTS 4 Berth (1992) with an unladen weight of 1237KG (I think!)

 

Would this be a good match? The website WhatTowCar. com doesn't seem to think so and says I'm 137KG overweight.

 

I am a novice at towing.

 

Do you think I could handle this caravan?

 

Any tips on loading both caravan and car?

 

Thanks in anticipation.

 

I'm afraid your Octavia isn't upto towing the Abbey if that's the unladen weight. Your Octavia has a maximum towing capacity of 1300kg so you need to know the laden weight (MTPLM) of the Abbey. 1237kg sounds heavy for an unladen single axle 1992 van so I would double check the weight if I was you.

A van with an unladen (MiRO) weight of 1237kg will have a laden weight of around 1450kg which is far too heavy for your Octavia's 1300kg max tow.

 

Cheers

Lee

Yeti 2.0TDi EU6 150 DSG 4X4 L&K, Octavia TSi Manual, Fabia TSi DSG, Swift Challenger.

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