The Skoda Kodiaq often graces lists of best family cars or best SUVs but is still often overlooked in favour of other brands. What many don't realise is that the Kodiaq comes from a long line of reliable and well built Skoda cars.
This Skoda Kodiaq review will take you through the model in detail and help you to decide which version is the best option for you.
The Kodiaq was given a facelift in 2021 to update a few of the exterior details. There's now a taller bonnet and more upright radiator grille for a stronger look from the front of the car. This was paired with slimmer headlights and a new front bumper design too. At the rear of the car, the rear bumper was redesigned and now includes a diffuser element as well as a redesigned spoiler.
Skoda also has a few unique features that it refers to as "clever ideas" which includes some fun additions to the Kodiaq. These include an umbrella which is located inside the front door for those times that you get caught unexpectedly in the rain and the net programme in the boot to keep your belongs in place and organised.
Additionally, the Kodiaq has been designed with a lot of additional storage, presumably due to seven seats reducing the boot space, which makes the interior much more functional. The front centre armrest also houses some storage which is large enough for any essentials, there's an overhead storage for glasses, and there is even the option to have some of the compartments air conditioned. Skoda have certainly recognised the needs of their passengers.
One of the biggest pulls of the Skoda Kodiaq is it's seven seats. It's designed for larger families whilst retaining storage across the interior. There is an option to have the SE Drive in five seats, but you'd be much better off looking at the Skoda Karoq or the Skoda Kamiq unless you desire an enormous amount of space.
The centre console houses the 8 inch touch screen which has an integrated sat nav and wi-fi connection. From the Sportline trim and above the screen is then upgraded to 9.2 inches for an even better user experience, but can be added on to the SE L Executive trim for £995.
One of the key features of the console is wireless Smartlink for connecting Apple Carplay and wired Android Auto Smartlink There's also a year of Skoda's Infotainment Online included with the purchase of a new Skoda Kodiaq which gives you voice control, online route calculation, a selection of infotainment apps, additional traffic and travel information, and even up to date information about nearby petrol stations and fuel prices.
For the Laurin & Klement trim (L&K) and vRS trim the dash is upgraded to the virtual cockpit, a 10.25 inch screen that replaces the traditional display and has four different screen views: classic, basic, extended, and modern. You can upgrade to this option from the SE L Executive trim for an additional £420.
When looking at some of the other add ons, the family pack is perhaps one of the smartest. It offers roller blinds for the side windows, a waste bin in the door panel, and protective side moulding for those little ones who are maybe a bit too eager when they open the doors.
As a car with either five or seven seats the Skoda Kodiaq interior has a lot of features designed for passenger comfort. Fabric upholstery is standard on the basic Skoda Kodiaq before upgrading to leather for the SE L Executive and Laurin and Klement trims, and Microsuede on the Sportline and vRS.
For driver comfort there's standard features like cruise control, front and rear sensors, and a rear camera to take the stress out of driving and and parking when you reach your destination. This is matched with dual zone climate control, which is upgraded to tri zone as part of the winter pack, to give everyone in the car their own control over the temperature. It's also got a raised driving position in comparison to some others in the SUV range, making it easier to see ahead of you.
The good thing about the Skoda Kodiaq is it's flexibility. Whist you can buy it with five seats, you're most likely going to go for the seven seats and not only because it's the only way to choose a higher trim.
With 7 seats in use there's still a solid 270 litres of space, which is 40 litres more than the Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace when set up the same way, so it's ahead of the competition for passenger and boot space combined.
The second row has the option to adjust for legroom in the rear seats. You can't move them individually so it stays equal across all of the seats, but does mean that you can adjust it based on who's in the car with you. It's also got a 40/20/40 split so that if you do need to utilise any additional space in the boot you can still use the other seats in the row.
Any time you're not using the rearmost seats you can fold them flat into the floor of the boot. This opens up the boot to an incredible 765 litres, 65 litres more than the Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace and 194 litres more than the Hyundai Santa Fe.
There's a couple of add ons that are pretty practical. For starters, if you prefer a spare wheel Skoda will allow you to add on a temporary space saver wheel for no extra cost, you just need to remember to select it as part of your build. There's also options like the Rough Road Package which adds an engine guard and under stone guard which is ideal for farm tracks or untarmacked private roads.
The Skoda Kodiaq offers five different petrol and diesel engines, all with automatic gearboxes.
The first petrol option is the 1.5 TSI DSG and is the only engine in the range with active cylinder technology. It offers 150PS and is available from the entry level to the Sportline trim. The next petrol engine is the 2.0 TSI DSG which offers 190PS and is four wheel drive. It's available on from the SE L Executive to the L&K and gives a good amount of power in comparison to its predecessor. Both of these offer more power than some rivals, like the Renault Captur.
The final petrol engine is only available on the vSR trim and is another 2.0 litre TSI but offers an enormous 245PS which rivals that of the VW Tiguan Allspace. This is also four wheel drive, meaning that you can really feel the benefit of the power of the Kodiaq as it was designed to be used.
There are two diesel engine options, both 2.0 litre DSG but differ in power. The first offers 150PS and comes as front wheel drive or four wheel drive and is available up to the vRS trim. You can choose which drive option you'd like until you reach the SE L Executive and after that only the 4x4 option is available. The other engine option is the 200PS diesel which is only available as four wheel drive and available on every trim level except the vRS.
Whilst they are diesel, they are designed with Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) which breaks up nitrogen oxides into nitrogen, water, and small amounts of CO2 and therefore reduces the amount of harmful pollutants being released as you drive.
The Kodiaq's downfall is that there's not any kind of hybrid option, even a mild hybrid, to reduce emissions or improve fuel economy which does mean that competitors such as the Renault Captur are ahead in that respect.
The Skoda Kodiaq has five different trim levels available: the SE Drive, SE L Executive, Sportline, L & K, and the vRS, all offering a wide range of features to suit your needs.
The Skoda Kodiaq SE Drive comes with a whole host of features, aside from being the only trim level that you can choose the number of seats you'd like. As well as this you get 18 inch alloys as standard, LED headlights and rear lights, leather multi function steering wheel, cruise control, front and rear parking sensors, and a rear view camera. Not bad at all for being the entry level.
Stepping up to the SE L Executive upgrades the alloys to 19 inches, adds chrome styling to the exterior, and adds driver side auto dimming and boarding spots to the side mirrors. It also adds the powered tailgate, which can have the virtual pedal added for extra ease, and drawers under the driver and front passenger seats for extra storage. The seats themselves are upgraded to leather, the front seats are heated and become electrically operated with a memory function.
The Sportline adds black styling to the exterior which includes the radiator grille, door mirrors, and roof railings for a sleeker and sportier look. As well as this, the alloys are upgraded in size again to 20 inches and inside the steering wheel is upgraded to the three spoke sport model with aluminium gearshift paddles. The seats get elevated to Microsuede sports seats instead of leather for a really plush feeling.
The Laurin and Klement is a special edition which pay homage to Skoda's founders. There's exterior badging and 19 inch anthracite alloys but the main differences are inside. The beige leather seats are heated and ventilated in the front and embossed with the L&K logo and paired with the virtual cockpit for the driver and the Canton sound system for a truly unique experience in the Kodiaq.
The final trim, the Skoda Kodiaq VRS, has all the bells and whistles. Outside, it's given vRS bumpers with vRS badging and 20 inch alloys with aero covers which gives a really striking look. Inside it comes with the virtual cockpit and black Microsuede sports upholstery with red stitching and the vRS logo on the front seats and steering wheel. It's much more stylish than you might expect from your average SUV.
The Skoda Kodiaq has had a five star Euro NCAP rating since it was first tested in 2017 and holds up well against others in their Large SUV group. It is let down in the safety assist rating, which is placed at 54%, and is much lower than others like the SEAT Terraco.
However, it's overall five star rating comes from a selection of effective features such as front assist which includes autonomous emergency braking, rain and light sensors, and hill hold control. There's also LED headlights as a standard which are upgraded from the SE L Executive trim to be full LED matrix headlights with cornering function, an advanced lighting option designed to give you the best visibility possible.
Skoda's standard warranty is 3 years, like most manufacturers, or up to 60,000 miles. There is the option to upgrade it to as much as 5 years and a maximum or 100,000 miles to give you peace of mind that your Skoda Kodiaq is covered for all eventualities.
The Skoda Kodiaq is priced similarly to competitors like the VW Tiguan Allspace, starting at £33,100 for the five seater SE Drive model and £34,165 if you opt for the seven seater equivalent. Stepping up, the SE L Executive comes in at £36,960 followed by the Sportline at £38,815.
There's then a bigger jump to the final two models. The L&K comes in at £44,550 and finally the vRS comes in at £47,690. However the amount of equipment that you get and the power of the engines available makes the extra spend worth it.
All of these prices are before making any changes to the spec and adding any additional features. Doing this increases the cost accordingly but Skoda has a really wide choice of options available to add to every trim.
The Skoda Kodiaq is an excellent choice when looking at seven seat cars. It's a family car that caters to growing families whilst still providing a large amount of space for all of the things that inevitably travel with you.
The Kodiaq is good value for money if you're looking at a well priced SUV with an abundance of extras available. It holds up against competitors at every turn and should definitely be a consideration if you need a big car for family life.