This report on driving before Christmas is a treat for people who like to turn up the music a little more than the good neighbor. In this case, though, they have a lot of time to decide if this SUV version of the Skoda Enyaq RS iV we drive is the right one for the private garage. And if this brilliant mamba-green paint job, which Skoda is only selling here for a meager 410 euros, is just plain rude or a considerable embarrassment.
Because if you go to a German Skoda dealer in a good mood and ask naively when this stylish full-electric car will be delivered (we tested it, of course), the new car salesman looks at us like we just landed from the moon and says something about the first quarter of 2024. as soon as possible. Suppose that everything goes well. Yes, a lot can happen between now and then. And if this keeps going, with what seems like a never-ending lack of wiring harnesses and semiconductor chips, we'll end up with Trabi waiting times like in the old GDR. We've heard that Enyaq registrations are already being used to make money in Berlin.
Well, the whole thing could be seen as an excellent topic to talk about in the future when the store owner comes around the corner and says, "Hello, your Enyaq is here!" Maybe soon after Christmas the following year. But maybe even to Santa Claus in the future.
Until then, save a little more because the price of this car is very high for a Skoda. The Skoda Enyaq RS iV will cost around 59,000 euros (or 61,550 euros for the coupe version). Skoda wants to know the exact price, so we will soon have to wait. And, of course, there are only some of the nice extras like strictly, mamba green, and so on.
But this high price is more exciting than the electric car itself. Even though Skoda says this SUV-RS will be a "sustainable top athlete," the coupe version has been around longer. But of course, that's just the usual marketing nonsense, which we don't take seriously, as we always do, even though the Czech's key numbers look good on paper.
Like its VW sibling, the ID.4 GTX, the two electric motors add up to a system output of 220 kW (299 hp) and 460 Newton meters of torque. At the front is a synchronous motor that is always turned on, and at the back is an asynchronous machine. This is how the electric, electronically controlled all-wheel drive works.
But just like the VW version, Skoda's expected 220 kW should be taken with a grain of salt, as the fine print shows. Even when it's at least 23 degrees outside and the battery is at least 88% charged, this pounding maximum electrical output is only available for 30 seconds. It was important to say that so we wouldn't get any nasty complaints in the mail later.
But don't worry blood. We still have some hope. As is often the case with sporty-looking cars, it doesn't have to be about speed. Sometimes, what gets our attention as drivers are quick-footed, creative dribbling, which our footballers in Qatar could be better at right now; the tricks of a chassis should be able to do much more than we can in tight turns or hanging serpentines—the excellent sound when moving faster.
Okay, let's quickly forget about the sound since this Skoda is fully electric, and we don't like this slightly strange background sound. Let's start out slowly by talking about how this 4.65-meter-long SUV model with the fancy RS abbreviation looks. As with the coupe, there is a lot of high-gloss black all over to give it a cool look. This red reflector in the rear apron makes all Skoda RS models stand out. The innovative Matrix LED main headlights (which invariably use high beams at night) are included, but the "Crystal Face" with its 131 LEDs that light up the vertical ribs and horizontal bars of the Skoda grille is the big show-stopper. All that's left to do for Christmas is add some tinsel.
Inside, there is a lot of black, a lot of carbon look, and these great (heated) sports seats with built-in headrests. The Skoda Enyaq IV is known for having a lot of space, and this is clear in both rows of seats. The standard version (RS Lounge) is made of microfiber fabric, which we like best. For an extra 670 euros, you can get a version that isn't vegan but is still made of microfiber (RS Suite). Striking: pretty good materials almost everywhere and careful work. The trunk is 585 liters, which is 15 liters more than in the coupe version. When the back seats are folded down, the trunk can hold up to 1720 liters, which is more than the coupe's 1610 liters. We're going to the hardware store with the athletes today.
Of course, sports suspension is required here. In this case, it lowers the body by 15 millimeters at the front axle and 10 millimeters at the back. Adaptive chassis control (DCC), which makes sense in this case, can be added for extra money, and basic settings like Eco, Comfort, Normal, and Sport can be chosen from a list of profiles. And only this RS-SUV has the extra drive program Traction for rural cross-country tours on unpaved, and now maybe even snow-covered, paths: it keeps all four wheels turning at speeds up to 20 km/h.
We're getting close to a tricky subject: top speed. Like the coupe version, this Skoda Enyaq RS iV has a top speed of 180 km/h, which is 20 km/h faster than the regular Enyaq models. But that's not the kind of sporty splurge people expect in this case. At least, nothing for highway speed freaks, who will now be sure to wave all of Skoda's data tables in our faces to show that even a tiny combustion engine SUV like the Kamiq can go between 188 and 219 km/h, depending on the engine. So, what are we going to say? During the test tour, this fact didn't bother us very often.
In general, we didn't have any significant problems along the way. On the mountainous test track, this RS goes around every turn. It felt like there were more than a hundred switchbacks and hairpin bends. Easy to make curves. It has well-behaved springs and dampers, responds well to every slight turn of the steering wheel (progressive steering is standard), and sprints away from a stop with a good e-power. And the hunt for Tempo 100, which takes 6.5 seconds (the same as the coupé), is also a nice change of pace.
On the other hand, even in sport mode, the steering and brakes should give us more firm feedback. And in high-speed corners, this cursed 2258-kilo curb weight (well, the battery weighs almost 500 kilos) dampens the high-pitched RS pleasure you'd expect. Even in sport mode, the heavy body shakes a bit too much. Also, the 21-inch Bridgestone winter wheels on the test car stood out because they were a little too hard and sticky. The smaller 20 formats would be a better choice.
It all depends on how you measure things. If you're a spoiled sporty person who doesn't care about your CO2 footprint, you might be disappointed if you were hoping for a half-wild racer like Skoda's well-known challenging RS combustion models. But if you're a green-minded person who only wants a fast electric car for daily use and a bit of good-natured fun on the weekend, this Skoda will help you out. Just like that.
Even so, everything else is fine. With a battery capacity of 82 kWh (net 77 kWh usable), this Czech RS should be able to go more than 500 kilometers on the WLTP cycle and should use an average of about 17.2 kW per 100 kilometers, according to the official numbers. It still needs to be fixed for good, but with the coupe version, it's 16.8 kWh/100 km.
What's the truth? At 18 degrees Celsius, suitable for the battery, we were on the road with an average of 22.7 kWh/100 km for a 90-kilometer trip. Up to 26 kW on the limited-speed highway and well under 20 kWh/100 km on the quieter hills in the countryside. Most of the time, we used the shift paddle to set the full three-stage energy recovery. Technicians at Skoda tell us that anyone who only drives the Skoda Enyaq in cities can reach 500 kilometers.
Accurate ranges of up to 400 kilometers should be acceptable with a moderate driving style (we're back to our sports philosophy problem). And how long does it take for the Skoda Enyaq RS to charge? With 135 kW, it doesn't meet some competitors' fast expectations and speed claims, but it does make the overall impression even stronger. Skoda says it will take 36 minutes for the DC fast charging station to charge a car from 10 to 80 percent. At first, this RS could even charge at up to 180 kW. Sure, we know it will take another half hour to get to 100 percent. The new Plug & Charge feature automatically recognizes the car at upgraded (Ionity) charging stations, saves time and is accessible on the nerves.
Now, the well-insulated Czech electric SUV offers all standard assistance systems. This electric car has everything from the all-in-one Travel Assist to the helpful Exit Warning System to the Parking Assistant, who can remember the complex driving maneuvers you do at home and do them exactly again if you need to. We also quickly got used to the 13-inch touchscreen while on the go, even though it was not the fastest.
And the digital language assistant "Laura" sometimes reminded us of stressful times with the infamous call centers. They didn't want to understand us in certain situations, primarily due to complaints, even though we spoke High German well. A firm "Please wait!" is one of Laura's favorite things to say. And if you ask her for a joke just for fun, she says the same thing as her voice cousins in the VW models ID.3 and ID.4: "My developers didn't teach me that." The question "What do cars like to eat best?" still gets the same VW laugh. A parking lot!« Of course, we would have liked to laugh at an absolute Czech joke. We've become good friends with the lady Laura and her lovely voice.
Of course, Skoda shines in the RS-SUV with these simple but clever details that almost no one else in the industry offers today. The umbrella compartment (with water drainage) in the driver's door, the cargo elements for the trunk, the double pocket (a small one for the smartphone) on the back of the front seats, the bottle holders (up to 1.5 liters) in the front doors, the strong charging cable pocket, or the clever side sleeping head holders (with a blanket!) for the outer rear seats, which are available for an extra charge. Or this small electric cable cleaner that comes with a sponge and fits nicely in a plastic box to keep your fingers from getting dirty. First, someone needs to think about it.
The Czechs are also proud of their stylish, high-end 400-liter roof box with a beautiful black finish that will be available as an accessory for the Skoda Enyaq IV electric SUV. Self-made or made by oneself. And for the back, they have this solid two-bike carrier for the trailer hitch (710 euros) that can carry up to 75 kilograms, so it can also be used for heavier pedelecs. Also, the Enyaq can tow up to 1,400 kilograms, which puts it in a good position compared to other electric vehicles. The only thing missing from this RS is a specific delivery date. However, the company still gives a vague shrug, even though they are happy that more than 175,000 people in Europe have ordered the Skoda Enyaq IV electric SUV. We can't wait to see what happens.