Skoda Scala

In a similar vein to its exterior, the supposedly new-age design of the Scala’s cabin doesn’t represent a big departure from what we’ve come to expect from Skoda.

Functionality and convenience continue to be prioritised, however, and they are epitomised by familiar ‘Simply Clever’ features such as the umbrella holster in the door, the ticket holder on the driver’s side A-pillar, the lined dustbin in the driver’s door, and ice scraper in the fuel filler door. For the 2024 model year, you can add to that list an optional wireless phone charger that uses cooling air from the car’s air conditioning system to prevent your device from overheating while charging. This focus on convenience has long been a big draw for the brand, and no doubt it will be for the Scala too.

The 8in touchscreen of our test car’s Bolero infotainment system is the standout attraction in what is an otherwise minimally populated cabin. It stands freely towards the front of a central recess in the dash fascia, within easy reach of the driver. The fascia itself is finished in textured silver panelling, which extends to the door panels and helps to inject a degree of colour into what is an otherwise decidedly monochrome driving environment. For the latest facelift, meanwhile, Skoda has broadened the material palette of the Scala’s interior with some appealing cloth textiles.

Ambient lighting in various shades of colour are offered as optional extras and would be well worth having for the additional aesthetic lift they’d introduce. Elsewhere, simple dial controls for the manual air conditioning system sit towards the base of the centre stack, above a decently sized storage cubby.

The touchscreen comes as standard on Scala SE models, and is used to operate a modest roster of standard features that includes DAB and Bluetooth connectivity. Satellite navigation is not part of the package at baseline spec; you get it instead along with a larger infotainment installation, on higher-trim models. But the ability to connect your smartphone via Android Auto or Apple CarPlay means you can still access navigation apps such as Google Maps or Waze.

The system itself is perfectly intuitive and responds to your inputs in a relatively slick fashion. Its graphics don’t exactly stand out as being market leading in terms of their sophistication, but the screen is certainly clear and easy to read. The same could be said of the car‘s new digital instrument screen.

That extended MQB-A0 platform pays dividends when it comes to interior space. Although the Scala’s 2.65m wheelbase is shorter than that of the Ford Focus, Skoda has nonetheless been able to liberate an impressive amount of rear leg room. Cabin width is tighter though, again due to the restrictions of the supermini-grade model platform: a lot more comfortable across the second row for two occupants than three.

In a testament to Skoda’s nous for smart interior packaging, the Scala also offers plenty of boot space: with the 60/40 split-folding rear seats in place, this stands at 467 litres, extending to 1410 litres with the seats folded down. By comparison, the Golf and the Focus come up short, with respective seats-up storage capacities of 380 litres and 375 litres.

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