2020 Skoda Octavia RS to Blend Performance and Practicality, Will Look Like This

2020 Skoda Octavia RS 11 photos
Photo: Andrei Nedelea/Skoda for autoevolution
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Skoda was nonexistent on the hot hatchback market before the year 2000, but since then, it has really managed to leave its mark with the Octavia.
Its hot hatches have never been the fastest or best to drive, but they have managed to blend the brand's image as a maker of sturdy VW-based cars that punch well above their weight with sportiness. Now the first-gen Octavia RS, for instance, has attained cult status, especially since it was better than the equivalent VW Golf GTI of the early 2000s.

The first Octavia RS had the same 1.8-liter five valve per cylinder turbocharged engine that made 180 horsepower (like in the Audi TT), while in the softer, slower Golf GTI, it only made 150 horsepower. And the Skoda looked much more like a performance car than the VW, with bold green brake calipers, big rims, a unique body kit and an available yellow paint finish that proved highly popular.

Skoda Octavia RS
Photo: Skoda
Then the second-generation model pulled the same trick again, undercutting the Golf GTI in terms of price, while offering almost identical straight line performance with more comfort and practicality thrown in. And this was a big deal, because this is what the Golf GTI had become renowned for - melding hot hatch pace with day-to-day usability.

In its second generation, the Octavia RS gained a bigger and more powerful 2-liter engine with 200 horsepower, as well as a diesel version with 170 horsepower. The latter proved remarkably popular with its much lower fuel bills and identical sporty design tweaks inherited from the gasoline-burning model.

The third-generation Octavia RS cemented its reputation without any major changes to the formula, although it did benefit from the third-gen Octavia’s increased level of perceived quality and luxury. By this time, people were already familiar with this model’s formula and the only major change was the introduction of optional all-wheel drive.

Skoda Octavia RS
Photo: Skoda
This really made the Octavia RS one of the most configurable performance cars on the market, at any price. You could have it as a hatch or estate, gasoline or diesel, manual or automatic and with front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. And depending on how many optional extras you added, you could have had it fairly cheap(if you didn’t go crazy with options), or pay Audi money for one with all the bells and whistles (both valid choices, we may add).

Now there’s a new Octavia RS right around the corner, expected to debut sometime in 2020. The regular Octavia was revealed in November and it sets the stage for yet another highly accomplished RS model from the Czech brand.

The formula won’t differ too much from that of the current Octavia RS - it will ride on the VW group MQB platform, get its motivation from a 2-liter TSI turbo four-pot that’s shared with the VW Golf GTI and it will be pitched as its more comfortable and practical alternative.

Skoda Octavia RS
Photo: Skoda
Skoda will most likely retain the 2-liter TDI version of the Octavia RS, even though Volkswagen could ditch the Golf GTD for the eighth generation. And both the hatchback and wagon body styles will be retained too, as well as the option to add all-wheel drive for both engine options.

Regarding the look of the upcoming Octavia RS, we expect it to feature some details from the Vision RS concept that the brand revealed not long ago. Sure, that car previews the hot version of the Scala, yet it does hint at the kind of changes Skoda wants to apply to its future sporty models.

This rendering I whipped up for the purpose of illustrating this article previews the Octavia RS quite accurately. Sure, I used the previous model’s rims and the new car definitely won’t be riding on those, but they look so cool that if Skoda doesn’t get the rim design just right, owners might be looking to buy this older style rim to fit to their new Octavia RS - they just look so good and as if they belong on the car.

2020 Skoda Octavia RS
Photo: Andrei Nedelea/Skoda for autoevolution
The all-new Skoda Octavia RS will debut sometime next year, possibly at a major motor show, most likely the 2020 Geneva Motor show.
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