In a time when SUVs are really ruling the roost across all segments, it’s really heart-warming to see two sedans at the top, in our ‘Best of 2020’ mega test – especially the Superb, and that’s for two reasons. First, it falls into the entry-level luxury sedan class, which is a dying breed in this day and age – but it’s a segment that deserves a second look when it contains a sedan as good as this one. And, second, the Superb has always been a car that punched above its weight, and this new facelifted iteration, with a new drivetrain, continues that tradition.
For a car that prioritises luxury over everything else, we were pleasantly surprised by its performance at the BIC. The short loop that we use has a good mix of fast sections, a chicane, and some relatively tight turns. The Superb was remarkably planted, even when pushed to the limit. While a bit of body roll was noticeable, it was not skittish by any means. The Superb’s chassis and suspension setup are also ably supported by the new 2.0-litre TSI motor. In fact, the engine has given the car a new lease of life. The old 1.8 was quite impressive in its own right, but the 2.0 takes it to another level altogether. Pushing out more power and torque than the outgoing 1.8 TSI, the Superb is unmistakably quicker than before. In fact, the Superb managed a mind-blowing lap time of 1 minute 11 seconds – second only to the immensely more powerful BMW M8, and just half-a-second slower than the ‘award-winning’ 330i we tested last year.
The Superb also does quite well in terms of the comfort of its rear-seat occupants. With its almost 4.9-metre length, the Superb is considerably longer than the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class. Needless to say, the space and comfort inside the cabin are considerably better than any other car in this price range. To further enhance the comfort quotient, the Superb also gets the signature Skoda Power Nap Package, rear sun blinds, and climate control.
Skoda has also done well to give the Superb a nip and tuck job. While there isn’t much that is different from the pre-facelift model, the 2020 Superb does look edgier than before. The grille has been mildly redesigned, the bumpers have been given a new shape, and there are a new set of alloy wheels too. And, in this sport trim, it really stands out on the road.
The 2020 Superb does miss out on some fancy equipment, though, like ventilated seats and connected tech, which are now available in more affordable cars. And this is perhaps the only minor flaw in an otherwise near-perfect car. While all of its competitors are suffering a lingering death, the Superb soldiers on. It’s proof that you just need to focus on your core strengths, and master them. Something that the Superb does pretty damn well.