Skoda launches what we expect could be the most popular models of its Singapore lineup – Scala hatch from S$116k with COE, Kamiq from S$120k with COE
UPDATE: Here’s our review of the Skoda Kamiq Monte Carlo!
UPDATE 2: And here’s our local review of the Skoda Scala!
Skoda Singapore today took the covers off not one, but two models that are not only totally new additions to the lineup, but also expected to be mainstays for the brand in 2021 and beyond.
The Scala small hatchback and Kamiq small SUV join the Czech brand’s stable here. Both cars are offered only with a 1.5-litre 150hp turbo engine choice, with three trim levels: Ambition, Style, and Monte Carlo.
The Scala costs S$115,900 with COE for the Ambition, S$120,900 with COE for the Style, S$124,900 with COE for the Monte Carlo.
The Kamiq costs S$119,900 with COE for Ambition, S$125,900 with COE for Style, and S$127,900 with COE for the Monte Carlo.
Both cars are powered by a 1.5-litre inline four-cylinder turbocharged engine with 150hp and 250Nm of torque, and only comes as a front-wheel drive model with a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox.
The Scala’s acceleration is 0-100km/h in 8.3 seconds and it has a top speed of 212km/h. It scores 5.5L/100km in fuel consumption, with CO2 emissions of 127g/km meaning it’s eligible for VES B (neutral).
Significantly, the Scala and Kamiq have active-cylinder tech (aka cylinder deactivation), which shuts off two of the four cylinders of the engine under low load. It’s been seen here before on the Karoq, VW Tiguan 1.4, and some Audi models, notably the Audi RS 6 Avant we recently reviewed. The tech, along with start-stop and recuperation help contribute to the VES B score.
Abroad there’s a 1.0-litre turbo engine, but our guess is that would have incurred a penalty under VES and made for a more expensive, or similarly priced car, in the end.
Unlike the Octavia, which has a hatchback door but looks and can be classified more as a sedan, the Scala is more in line with the classic European hatch, like the Volkswagen Golf.
While the car runs on the VW Group’s smaller A0 platform, as seen on the Polo compact hatch, the Scala actually has a larger footprint than the Volkswagen Golf. As Ju-Len noted in his international test drive of the Scala in 2019, it’s 4,362mm long, with a wheelbase of 2,649mm.
For comparison, a VW Golf (which sits on the MQB platform) is 4,258mm long, with 2,637mm between the axles. In that respect, the Scala is not exactly a Golf rival, being both roomier inside and less expensive, we should in fact see it as a competitor to small five-seat MPVs such as the Citroen C4.
Like other Skodas on sale, the Scala has numerous thoughtful features, not least of which is 14 different stowage spaces in the cabin, totalling 25-litres, with the boot being a very-large-for-the-segment 467-litres, expandable to 1,410-litres with the seats down.
It also looks to pack plenty of equipment for the price. Across all six cars – the Scala and Kamiq – Skoda has kept costs down by including only autonomous forward braking/collision mitigation (what it calls Front Assist with City Emergency Brake), though this is arguably the most important feature of any active safety setup – cars without it can’t score a full five stars in Euro NCAP. But there are six airbags, the expected acronym nannies (ESP, etc) plus a tyre pressure loss indicator, parking distance control, and rearview camera.
The Scala range kicks off with the entry-level Ambition variant at S$115,900 with COE.
It packs an impressive level of equipment: keyless entry/start, 17-inch wheels, LED lights (front, rear, DRL, though fog lamps and indicators are halogens), an LCD panel with conventional instruments, drive modes, and steering wheel controls. It doesn’t miss out on contemporary tech either – while it has the most basic 6.5-inch ‘Swing’ touchscreen infotainment, the system does have Apple CarPlay, Android Auto capability, and there’s a wireless device charger too.
One step up, the Scala Style variant brings more equipment to the table for S$120,900 with COE. Visual upgrades include 18-inch wheels, LED lights that have dynamic LED indicators, black wing mirror covers, and you’ll also see a powered tailgate with a classier glass extension.
Inside, there’s powered driver’s seat, ambient lighting, paddle shifters, and a fully digital 10.25-inch driver’s instrument panel (Virtual Cockpit), while the car also adds lane keeping/assist, blind spot monitoring, and adaptive cruise control to its active safety set. The infotainment screen also is boosted to the 8.0-inch Bolero unit.
Lastly there’s the Monte Carlo trim as the range-topper, which has everything the Style, but with more sportiness, much like a VW R-Line car – that’s for S$4k on top of the Style, or S$124,900 with COE.
There’s the Monte Carlo design package, which adds special 18-in wheels, Monte Carlo badging, a new rear diffuser in gloss black, and the grille, mirrors, bumper additions, Skoda lettering, all in gloss black as well, plus a panoramic sunroof. Inside there’s a sport steering wheel with paddle shifters and a carbon trim piece. If you want to know more about the Monte Carlo trim – and the name – read Skoda’s storyboard on it.
Ju-len test drove the Scala at its overseas test drive in 2019 (feels ages ago!) – find out what he thought of it here.
Watch us above as we poke and prod at the Scala in person with our video from its preview at the 2020 Singapore Motor Show, at the 8:20 mark. That’s when we rated it one of the most important cars at the show – but of course, that’s before we knew it would be debuting in 2021 with the Kamiq.