It’s all too easy to fall into the trap of buying a boring econobox — or worse, not owning a car at all, just because you live in or around a city. Cab aggregators will send you vehicles when you need them, and car rental companies will cater to your outstation travelling needs. It all works out to be cost-effective, making you believe in saving more money to sustain an ever-increasing extravagant lifestyle. Many would concur and continue to live this way, but a handful of you would find ways to escape this rat-race.
Welcome to the pursuit of finding happiness in your daily-driven. The elite few look forward to having a blast behind the wheel, even in the hustling traffic of Mumbai. The trick is to find a sports car that’s easy to park, energetic yet confident in traffic and has the legs to entertain on the open road. Traits of an engineering marvel, something like the Skoda Octavia RS 245 – it ticks all those boxes and then some. I reckon it’s a weapon that helps you battle through life in the concrete jungle.
Why the Octavia RS 245? The right car can make mid-week runabouts incredibly easy, not to mention transforming weekend escapes into driving nirvana. Most people think sports cars don’t make great commuter cars. That’s the mould I intend to break. First up, look past the racy bits, and you’ll realise this is, in essence, a souped-up Octavia. This means you get four doors, space for four adults to be seated comfortably, effective air-conditioning, massive boot space and a touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Bits of importance in today’s day and age.
Are you looking for a more luxurious ride? Fret not; Skoda has got you covered here. Nine airbags, dual-zone climate control, Quadra-LED headlights, a panoramic sunroof, electric driver’s seat and hands-free parking as well. Fortunately, the Octavia RS 245 has become more practical and performance-minded; it can drive you from Point A to Point B with minimal fuss and provide thrills when you’re up for some driving excitement.
And it delivers when you poke it. Don’t let its body style fool you; this is a 6.6-second car that packs in 245PS (241.6bhp) delivered from a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine codenamed EA888. The seven-speed DSG gearbox might take a moment or two to react, but it does a fantastic job launching the sports saloon at traffic lights. Then, there’s the tricked out LSD that ensures minimal wheelspin and maximum traction when you decide to floor it every so often. These additives make it highly desirable, and chauffeur-driven owners in their flashy BMWs will look on you.
It might be 15mm lower to the ground than the standard, the chassis might be stiffer, and the suspension might be less forgiving, but those are minute compromises if your driving is limited within the city. On a good day, when the roads get curvier and the tarmac gets softer, nothing out there matches the value-to-performance proposition that the Octavia RS 245 offers. It’s a car that you can happily drive on a day-to-day basis. You can also squeeze into complicated parking spots, get around drive-thrus, pack in more than two bags after your supermarket shopping spree and can offer decent comfort on days when you decide to unwind in the back seat. It’s so apt to be the only vehicle in your garage that will prompt you to take your phone once the car is turned off.
There are reasons to hate it, but there are stronger ones to love it. If I’d had the bank balance, the Octavia RS 245 would be my daily. Driving a performance car ranks high on the list of things that will make me happy, and I’d be eyeing a particular vehicle that I could own for a long, long time. Ditch that romantic partner and buy yourself a performance car because it could make you happier in life.
Drive it. Rev it loud. Embrace it.