At first glance, it’s just a minor facelift. And actually the other one too. However, minor retouches helped these cars a lot.

At the beginning of August, our domestic automaker Škoda presented the facelift of the Kamiq and Scala models. Now we had the opportunity to sit in the cars for the first time and try out all the new features. But we will have to wait to try the main one, after all, the Matrix LED headlights with the coverage of surrounding traffic are poorly tested in the afternoon.

By the way, the basic Selection equipment cannot have them, the Top Selection has them for an extra charge of CZK 18,000, and they are included in the price for the First Edition and Monte Carlo. But we can already tell you that covering the surrounding traffic will not be as smooth as with large cars. But no one expected that.

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The point is that the Matrix LED headlights here don’t have many segments, so while in big cars, such as the Superb, the light cones move in front of you almost like an animation when unfolding, the Scala and Kamiq can seem a bit choppy. Of course, it won’t affect visibility, it’ll just be one of those details that will remind you that you’re still driving a small and relatively cheap car. Better headlights can probably be put here, but there we are already talking about completely different prices, which of course would be reflected in the total price of the car.

But what about the rest?

At first glance, it looks like not much has changed, but let’s list it. The design of the exterior has changed slightly, but it is really just retouching, for example the front grille, the shape of the headlights or the front bumper are different. The cars have new Simply Clever elements, which include a virtual pedal (that’s waving your feet under the rear bumper to open the trunk) or wireless charging of mobile phones with a handy rubberized compartment so that the mobile does not move while driving and still charges. In addition, it now has a cooling function, although it is more about ventilation using a small fan under the charging surface.

At the back, at the end of the central tunnel, you will also find a rubberized compartment with another cup, which complements the other two in the armrest. The optionally available LED rear lights have animated direction indicators and a new light graphic in the shape of the letter L. With the times, the cars also use sustainable materials, the ice scraper in the tank lid is made of recycled plastic and the wheel arch covers are also made of recycled materials.

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The materials inside are of a similar style, the door panels and ceiling lining are made of wood flour, hemp or kenaf. Inside, a digital instrument panel is also now standard, previously classic alarm clocks with a small display in the middle were the norm, and the digital panel was an extra charge or on higher trims. Furthermore, it is the basis of infotainment with a diagonal of 8 inches with two physical controls. On request, the display is 9 inches and fully touchscreen.

The Monte Carlo equipment is recognizable from the previous version by the extension of glossy black exterior elements, including the Škoda inscription on the lid of the fifth door. As always, you then have a different front bumper and an added rear diffuser. Another novelty is the expansion of the climate control panel. The previous design was criticized for the absence of buttons for the intensity of the blast. Two more buttons fit on the panel, but no more, so now the intensity is there, but the control of the direction of the air conditioning to the feet or to the window is still done via the display.

Liters dominate

Under the hood you will find TSI engines in the evo2 generation. The basic motorization continues to be a liter three-cylinder with an output of 70 kW with a five-speed manual transmission. The more powerful liter with an output of 85 kW has a six-speed manual and, on request, a seven-speed dual-clutch DSG. The top-of-the-range four-cylinder 15-liter has only this automatic and offers 110 kW (150 hp). In addition, it also has the ACT+ two-cylinder deactivation system, which compared to the previous version has new software and a smoother transition between four and two cylinders, which we acknowledge. You can still tell by the very slight vibrations, but it’s nothing disturbing.

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In terms of driving, nothing has really changed. I drove in three versions (Scala 1.0 TSI/85 kW/6M, Kamiq 1.5 TSI DSG Monte Carlo, Kamiq 1.0 TSI/85 kW/6M) and there is practically nothing to complain about. The fact that the 85 kW engine does not pull much from a hundred and you have to downshift to fifth probably does not need to be mentioned.

I had the longest route with the Kamiq Monte Carlo, the 1.5 TSI engine has an excellent consumption of between five and six liters in normal driving, but in the hills it rushed to the limit of 8 l/100 km. The DSG transmission is no sports gear, but it does its job satisfactorily in sport mode. You must not expect miracles and be tempted by a slightly sharper appearance.

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However, I have to praise the solution for turning off the assistance systems in all versions. You press a button on the right arm of the steering wheel and you scroll to watch lanes and beep when you exceed the speed limit, the most annoying thing. You’re done in three clicks. There is still a physical button on the gear selector to turn off the start/stop system. We will reserve a more detailed examination until the Czech conditions, the first tests are approaching.

Skoda Scala and Kamiq: Czech prices
Model Scala Kamiq
1.0 TSI 70W/5M 459,900 CZK CZK 479,900
1.0 TSI 85 kW/6M CZK 479,900 499,900 CZK
Top Selection
1.0 TSI 85 kW/6M 519,900 CZK 539,900 CZK
1.0 TSI 85 kW/7DSG 559,900 CZK 579,900 CZK
1.5 TSI 110 kW/6M 559,900 CZK 579,900 CZK
1.5 TSI 110 kW/7DSG 599,900 CZK 619,900 CZK
1.0 TSI 85 kW/6M 559,900 CZK 579,900 CZK
1.0 TSI 85 kW/7DSG 599,900 CZK 619,900 CZK
1.5 TSI 110 kW/6M 599,900 CZK 619,900 CZK
1.5 TSI 110 kW/7DSG 639,900 CZK 659,900 CZK
First Edition
1.0 TSI 85 kW/6M 599,900 CZK 599,900 CZK
1.0 TSI 85 kW/7DSG 639,900 CZK 639,900 CZK
1.5 TSI 110 kW/7DSG CZK 679,900 CZK 679,900

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