New Skoda Kodiaq vRS ditches diesel for petrol

Performance version of family SUV gets lighter, more powerful drivetrain plus cosmetic upgrades

2021 Skoda Kodiaq vRS

Skoda has revealed its facelifted version of the Kodiaq vRS. Significantly, the new model replaces the previous model’s twin-turbocharged 2.0-litre diesel engine with a 242bhp 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol unit – the same engine found in the latest VW Golf GTI and Octavia vRS. Prices for the Kodiaq vRS start from £44,635, and it’s available to order now.

Not only does the new petrol engine gain an extra 5bhp over the old diesel unit, but thanks to the fact it’s 60kg lighter, Skoda says the vRS Kodiaq now covers the 0-62mph sprint in just 6.6 seconds, that’s 0.5s faster than the diesel. Top speed also rises by 5mph to 144mph.

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Further weight savings are gained from the new seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox, which is 5.2kg lighter than the transmission fitted to the previous diesel variant. Power is sent to all four wheels.

2021 Skoda Kodiaq vRS

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Standard kit for the vRS includes revised vRS bumpers, gloss black roof rails, twin-exit exhausts, 20-inch alloys and red brake calipers. There’s also a fresh bonnet, a reshaped radiator grille and the same Matrix LED headlamps found on the standard recently updated Kodiaq. The driver benefits from progressive power steering, plus adaptive dampers; both can be customised using Skoda’s Dynamic Chassis Control system.

Inside the cabin there’s the usual range of vRS styling tweak, including vRS-branded sports seats, red stitching for the dashboard and a leather-trimmed sports steering wheel. There are also updated door trims with microsuede upholstery.

There’s also a standard-fit Virtual Cockpit digital instrument panel, which includes a 10.25-inch screen in place of the analogue gauges elsewhere in the Kodiaq range. There’s also a 9.2-inch central touchscreen infotainment system with wireless support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

2021 Skoda Kodiaq vRS

As you would expect, there’s also a whole suite of new drive assistance technology, including autonomous emergency braking, a rear-view camera and parking assist. Also included is Travel Assist; this uses the adaptive cruise control and adaptive lane assist systems to assume control of the vehicle on the motorway, providing the driver supervises.