Skoda Slavia 1.5 TSI DSG: Observations after a week of driving

The car is very silent, smooth and the linear acceleration of the DSG is something to fall in love with.

BHPian audioholic recently shared this with other enthusiasts:

One week with the 1.5 TSI DSG:

I brought the car home on 26th May and its been slightly more than a week so far. Have done 250kms till now and thanks to a wedding in the family, the car got to do lot of pottering around town and only on the second day after purchase, I had to drive till Hosur and then had some official work in the private airstrip there. Since we had rented the whole runway, I also used it to do a gentle high speed run and let the transmission run through all gears.

TLDR: Happy with the purchase, just the car I wanted and everyone who has seen the car have extremely liked it.

I don’t think I have enough time or talent to create a whole ownership thread, but would list some observations as time goes by:

  • Skoda’s India 2.0 has been a mixed bag so far. They got some things right, messed up some others and still have a long way to go to pull up their socks. But the hard truth is that, the Slavia has brought back life to the almost dead C segment sedan space. With the flood of the compact SUVs all over the market, the Verna, City and Slavia and Virtus are the only available choices today if one is specific about a sedan like I am. I am not a fan of the whole concept of a compact SUV. And with the 1.5TSI offering, there is literally no competition for this category of a high performance C segment sedan. So lets keep that as a niche offering.
  • The mixed bag of India 2.0 also shows in the interiors. There are some bits of high quality, and others exactly the opposite. The door panels are hard plastic, so is the dashboard top and many other bits. Compared to that the steering, most touch points, seats are very well done.
  • This car is a hoot to drive, just what I wanted. I don’t give a damn about the dashboard being soft or the door panels having fabric. The car is very silent, smooth and the linear acceleration of the DSG is something to fall in love with. So far I haven’t used 10-20% of the throttle and only once I guess I went halfway to overtake a truck and that was scary. Acceleration is damped upto 2nd and 3rd gear after which all hell breaks loose.
  • Suspension is very balanced. It isn’t too stiff nor too soft and that along with a rather light steering just goes where you want the car to, without the need of any correction nor body roll. This was lovely on curvy roads where I didnt feel nervous one bit. However, it makes a thud noise when there is a dip in the road and I guess the dampers are sort of slow to react.
  • I did not get CEAT tyres but GoodYear Assurance Triple max. Initially thought of swapping the CEATs to Conti, but dropped the idea for now. They do their job.
  • Brakes have insane bite and needs getting used to. The discs are rather huge and so are the calipers and pads. And this without trying hard braking since I want the pads and disc to bed in. Brake disc wiping function makes a light grinding noise when starting the car from a prolonged standstill. After that there is no more noise.
  • Interior space is loved by all and even though the plastics have been reported as poorly fit, I dont think I am going to push those panels every day and feel bad that they flex. For the tropical climate, I am sure this was a India 2.0 adaptation to prevent any cracks with tightly fit plastics which would degrade over time due to temperature difference. Whatever it may be, I am not someone who will probe this and feel bad unlike those Youtubers.
  • Car has very good road presence, and is an eye grabber. I think so far 100+ people have seen my car from inside and outside thanks to the wedding, and everyone have liked it for various reasons.
  • The much talked about AC issue isn’t present. Of course, this isn’t my Innova or SX4 where if I set the temperature to 25 deg C, I would not have to change it over my entire ownership(that has really been the case with our other cars). In the Slavia, I vary it between 21-23 deg C. What was funny was I was discussing this issue of German cars having weak ACs in my cousins Tiguan Allspace. He had also set his car AC to 21 deg C and looks like that’s the 25deg of Japanese car ACs
  • But I guess there are multiple factors for this AC issue. One is that the turbo and exhaust manifold of the 1.5 at least is near the firewall where the AC refrigerant pipes also enter the cabin. And there is no insulation here. Hence I believe some of the efficiency of the AC is gone due to this especially in traffic where the heat behind the engine and between the firewall isn’t dissipated. I am planning to insert some insulation to check if this sort improves the cooling. But apart from the fact that I have to set the AC temperature a bit lower than my other cars, I have no complaints with the AC. I never had to switch it to completely LOW or manual mode unlike those facing problems with the 1.0.
  • One annoyance is with the start stop system. It is too aggressive and shuts off the engine even when the car is just coming to standstill like a speed breaker. This is horrible and in bumper to bumper traffic is unmanageable.
  • Dealership hasn’t provided foot mats and mudflaps which I had only asked for instead of that welcome kit.
  • I wish I could customize the instrument cluster a bit more.
  • Headlight low beam is very good, but high beam just average. This coming from other cars with insane lighting setups So maybe compared to the average halogen bulb, this is better. But I did a side by side comparison with a Seltos and the Slavia beat it with headlight brightness and even spread.
  • Dad also liked the car a lot the way it drives and the refinement.

That’s it for now. Will share more observations as I log more kms.

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