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25.07.2017
Czech Republic
Sector: CNG

Skoda Octavia G-TEC - makes sense, but doesn't

Skoda Octavia G-TEC - makes sense, but doesn't © gazeo.com

A CNG-powered car is a good option – fuel is cheaper than petrol, tailpipe emissions are lower and the engine runs quietly and is more flexible. If – and only IF – you have refueling stations at hand. We don't, so we took the Octavia abroad.
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Skoda Octavia G-TEC refueling in Warsaw© gazeo.comIf you're queueing to refuel after three refuse trucks, be sure CNG pressure will be low and the station's storage will be empty, so you'll squeeze in less fuel than you normally would

It's been said too many times already that there aren't many enough CNG stations in Poland, but we're going to repeat it now and as many times as it takes until it changes for the better. Natural gas is just too good a fuel to just ignore it, especially when you can buy a brand new car, straight from the dealership, equipped with a factory-fitted CNG system. And it's one that will only cost you 3 to 5 euros per 100 km in fuel. Meet the Skoda Octavia G-TEC!

With single refueling range at 300-450 km (depending on driving conditions and style), the car only makes sense if you live near a CNG station and drive locally or if you're lucky enough to live in a country where infrastructure is well developed, e.g. Italy or Germany. Even though there's a regular, 50-litre petrol tank on board, just like on any other Octavia, emptying it on a regular basis is not what you want to do when you buy a methane-powered vehicle. And so, since we are based in Lodz, Poland, and the nearest CNG station is in Warsaw, 120 km away, we took the car on a trip to Estonia to review it properly.


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Good to know

Even though the 1,4 TSI engine has direct petrol injection, CNG is applied into the combustion chambers indirectly, via the intake manifold. However, petrol interjections are not required, because petrol injectors are mounted in special aluminium rings, which disperse excessive heat and protect them from overheating

Last, but not least, let's see if purchasing the G-TEC pays off. To buy it in Poland, you need to add over 11000 zlotys (approx. 2600 euros) to the price of the 1,0 TSI version. The 1,0 TSI costs 72580 zlotys, the G-TEC 84150 zlotys, both in Active trim (that's around 17280 and 20035 euros, respectively). The engine is different (with three cylinders instead of four), but its output is similar to that generated by the unit under the G-TEC's bonnet (115 versus 110 PS, whereas the regular, petrol-only 1,4 TSI generates 150 PS). Based on official economy figures (we haven't driven the Octavia 1,0 TSI), i.e. 4,9 l/100 km for the 1,0 TSI and 5,7 m3/100 km for the G-TEC, and current fuel prices in Poland (4,49 zl/l of petrol and 3,29 zl/m3 of CNG, i.e. 1,07 euro/l and 0,78 euros/m3), we concluded that the G-TEC only saves 3,25 zl/100 km (0,77 euros/100 km) and breaks even after covering... 356 thousand km! Try as we might, we won't convince anyone the car makes sense economically speaking. Pity, but it's true.



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Robert Markowski
source: Skoda, own information, e-petrol.pl



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