Do you know what bothers me? My hands. Jake (Wild Bull, 1980)
I did not get off at my subway stop today. I looked up and through the window in front of my seat I saw the sign for my stop. But I haven’t gotten up. It has been a few seconds of vertigo, I could almost feel my muscles tensing to get up against my will, or my lack of will. Staring at the poster, the train whistled. Then with a certain laziness and a snort the doors have closed. For a moment the poster has remained there. And then the movement of the train has erased it until it has plunged into darkness. I have realized that it is the first time that I went beyond my stop on this line. He was traveling into the unknown. Well, maybe not so much since the subway map clearly indicated the next station. And the next. And the next … I have reached the end of the line almost without realizing it and I still did not want to get up. But some workers have entered. “Let’s clean up” they told me, pointing to their devices as if apologizing for being in the way. I made them a gesture that pretended to be nice and I got off.
I don’t know the neighborhood where I emerged. The sun is beginning to set behind the buildings. The smells are not those of my street. There are more people circulating, stalls on the sidewalks and a very old fountain full of graffiti but that continues to pour water on two breedless puppies playing chase. A veiled lady has come down to shout at some children who were playing with a ball against the wall of her building. The children laugh, put the ball away and run away. The lady waves her hand and continues screaming until they disappear around a corner. I have been walking without realizing it and I come to a small square in which some old people occupy a bench while others are sitting on chairs, each one different, as if they had each been brought down from home. One of them wears a mask and an oxygen cylinder. He pushes the mask aside to smoke and laughs uproariously until he chokes on a cough. They give him to drink from a flask. More laughs. I have stumbled upon something. It looks like a lamp. I bend down to pick it up. Then a hand joins mine. A very young girl with very green eyes and tan skin has reached down to pick her up at the same time. He looks at me and says “You have finally crossed.”
The Volkswagen group has been one of the car manufacturers that has most decidedly embarked on the path of electrification, proposing a new range of electric cars in addition to the hybrid and plug-in hybrid options that it has in the catalog. It is a risky strategy that involves the design of new platforms that dispense with combustion engine models, which in many cases have been true best-sellers. This is how the ID.3 and ID.4 were born, two vehicles that are a true declaration of intent for the German brand.
|Analyzed model||Skoda Enyaq|
|Engine and finish||iV 80|
|Maximum speed||160 Kmh|
|Acceleration o-100||8.5 s|
|Length / width / height||4649/1879/1616 mm|
|Maximum power RPM||204 CV|
|Maximum torque Nm / RPM||310 Nm|
But what about the other brands in the group? Skoda in particular has not wasted time either and has adopted these new platforms for electric vehicles to design its own vehicles. The first of this series of models based on the group’s new electric car platform is the Enyaq, a car that, after being derived from the Volkswagen model, contains all the peculiarities of philosophy and design that have always characterized the brand with solutions practices that differentiate the brand’s models.
The first impression of the Enyaq’s design is that its lines move away from those of its brother the ID.3 and ID.4, with a more futuristic appearance, and seeks to be twinned with an appearance more similar to that of a traditional SUV. A bit in the style of what Ford has been looking for with its Mustang Match-E. In terms of proportions, Skoda has maximized the size that is closer to that of its larger SUV, the Kodiaq, than the other models in the family. The height is noticeably lower but the appearance is undoubtedly imposing, more impressive than that of the German brothers.
On the exterior of the Enyaq we find numerous touches that give it a very marked family feel, such as the shape of the large grille or the very elongated headlights on the sides. An also large bumper and the lower air intake give a sporty look to the front in which angular shapes abound, more than in other Skoda models such as the Kodiaq perhaps to underline the differences between the models with combustion engines.
On the sides, the large 21-inch wheels and a slightly lower profile than that of the Kodiaq stand out, which gives it a somewhat more sporty appearance. A large black plastic molding dominates the underside of the car although it does not extend across the wheel arches. The Enyaq line ends at the top of the boot lid with an imposing Spoiler to provide a touch more in line with the sporty look that Czech designers seem to have sought after.
The rear part has a design that has a rather straight drop, with an appearance more like a minivan than an SUV, in which the aforementioned spoiler dominates at the top. The sharp-looking headlamps are joined in the center with the brand’s logo in large letters as is customary for the new generation of the brand’s models. At the bottom, a not too large bumper with black and gray plastic trim completes the rear.
The car’s good size and height make accessing the interior very convenient. When accessing inside we find a very big difference with respect to the ID.3, even bigger than the external appearance. Inside Skoda has opted for a more classic design without renouncing the modern keeping the screens but little else since it has wrapped them with a traditional-looking console with good materials and finishes. Thus, the indicator behind the steering wheel that in the Volkswagen model remains “floating” behind the steering wheel is integrated into a dashboard lined with imitation leather material with stitching finish to give it greater elegance.
This is a small indicator, the same as that of ID.3, but it gives enough information. On the other hand, the screen of the 13-inch infotainment system emerges from the aforementioned dashboard in an ideal position so as not to distract from the view of the road. The operation is similar to that of the Volkswagen model with compatibility with Android Auto and Apple Car Play as well as a complete section of information on charging and other parameters of the propulsion system and electrical energy storage.
As in other models, it allows relatively easy to program deferred charging to take advantage of nightly electricity rates. It is also possible to program charging and other functions such as turning on the air conditioning system through a mobile application. Under the screen we find a touch area that allows turning the system on and off as well as controlling the volume or zoom of the navigation system maps. As always, we prefer a more traditional system but it doesn’t work badly.
Lazy multimedia system
At some point we have found that the system started slowly or stuck and had to be restarted but we assume it was a problem with the unit we tested. Among the front seats we find a “floating” console with a large storage compartment that houses the gear selector and the handbrake button as well as more holes and cup holders. The finish is also lined with stitching which makes it comfortable as an armrest and pleasant to the eye and to the touch.
In summary and as usual with Skoda models, the impression is that the interior is full of practical solutions, that everything is at hand and that the finishes are very well achieved. Many details of upholstery and materials if not luxury yes of good quality in areas that are not visible give a very good impression of how the car has been conceived more to achieve a pleasant feeling of quality than to deceive the eye as it happens on occasion.
The seats are comfortable and hold well in curves, something necessary since the Enyaq is a car that, as we will see, can be quite dynamic. In the back, the car is spacious, especially with regard to height and legroom, which, as is often the case in electric models, has the advantage of not having a transition tunnel and therefore the passenger in the car. central square has all the space for it. In width, however, the space is less than what we can find in a similar size SUV.
The central console opens two air vents for the rear seats and a temperature control for the rear seats. Below the ventilation outlets we find two USB-C connections for charging devices. On the back of the central square is an armrest that has pockets for drinks when it is unfolded. There are large pockets for storing items in the doors, pockets in the front seat backs, window shades and the sunroof that provide a more light and airy feeling when open.
The boot of the Enyaq is quite large, although at 585 liters it does not outperform the more capable SUV models. As usual in Skoda models, it has numerous accessories to rationalize the space and carry the packages within it as well as a suffered upholstery with the appearance of being very practical. The double bottom of the boot is ideal for placing the charging cable but also leaves space for other objects.
Not too sporty…
With regard to the dynamic test, the first thing to bear in mind is that, as with the ID.3, the Enyaq comes in different versions depending on the characteristics of the motor and battery. The one we have had the opportunity to test is the model 80 with a 77 kWh battery and 204 horsepower engine. With this configuration, the approved autonomy is 525 kilometers, somewhat less than the ID.3 analog model that allows it to theoretically reach 554 km. And the fact is that the Enyaq weighs almost 100 kilos more than the Volkswagen model…
The feeling at the wheel in urban routes is very similar to that experienced with the ID.3, a car that does not feel heavy when accelerating with lightning-fast reactions to accelerator pressure, somewhat more sensitive if we select the Sport mode. In urban routes and although the car has a considerable size, the agility provided by the electric drive is very remarkable. It is also well soundproofed so traveling kilometers around the city is done with complete peace of mind.
On the road the 204 available horsepower is instantly noticeable and fast driving is possible in almost any circumstance. Of course, compared to the Volkswagen model, the Enyaq’s suspension is somewhat more “bourgeois” and damped, so the response on twisting roads is somewhat calmer, while still being safe. This causes the car to lose some sportiness since, on the other hand, the steering response is somewhat less direct. Good soundproofing and the aforementioned suspension make the Enyaq extremely comfortable on the road.
As with Volkswagen’s electric models, we can configure various retention levels for energy recovery, up to four different ones, but none of them manages to fully brake the car (the “one-pedal driving” mode of some models of the competence). Playing with these retention levels is easy by using the paddles behind the steering wheel or simply by switching to B mode on the gear selector.
The range of the Skoda model, as usual, is less than that advertised if we use the mixed car (road and city) and much less if we do the entire route on the road or highway. However, we have found that in this last mode of use the consumption is not as high as in other models of a similar size and we can easily exceed the 250 kilometers of range with a reasonable use of the accelerator. In one hundred percent urban use, we can approach 500 kilometers if we drive smoothly and even more if we drive in Eco mode.
The Enyaq is capable of recharge rates of up to 135 kWh at direct current fast recharge points. As is customary in this type of recharging, when the battery reaches 80% capacity, the speed decreases, but until then reaching that level of charge only takes about 30 minutes. In these conditions it is very possible to travel with this Skoda model, programming the stops in fast recharging areas to continue on our way.
We really liked Skoda’s use of the German group’s platform for electric vehicles while maintaining its very particular philosophy of practicality and modern design. The Enyaq outwardly has a very solid family feel with the look of a traditional SUV with modern lines but without any hint that it could be an electric car. And when it comes to the interior, the manufacturer has taken great care in both design and finishes and materials that are very pleasant to the eye and to the touch with numerous practical solutions to which we are accustomed.
It is a car in which a lot has been bet on comfort over sporting behavior and with which it is very pleasant to travel kilometers, something that is very possible thanks to the good capacity of the battery and the possibility of fast charging by direct current. Also in the consumption section, Skoda has achieved good performance, as long as we are not too enthusiastic about the accelerator since its weight penalizes it when we opt for a more sporty driving.
The Skoda Enyaq is an electric SUV with good performance and comfort with an interior with good finishes and practical solutions