The sportiest Skoda Octavia models without an RS badge have been delayed for Australia, as the car industry continues to grapple with production interruptions. They are now not due until next year, about 12 months later than originally planned.
The 2023 Skoda Octavia Sportline – the middle-of-the-range, ‘black appearance pack’ version of the latest Octavia – is due in Australian showrooms at least 12 months later than first planned.
Initially earmarked for Australian showrooms at the start of 2022, then delayed to July or August 2022, the Octavia Sportline’s local launch has been pushed back to some time next year – amid high demand for the three model grades in Skoda showrooms today and ongoing production interruptions affecting all car brands.
When it does go on sale, the Octavia Sportline is due to replace the current 140TSI Limited Edition – introduced mid last year to fill the gap to the Sportline’s arrival – as the most expensive Octavia available without an RS badge.
The Sportline will inherit the Limited Edition’s 140kW/320Nm 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine, connected to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission and front-wheel drive.
As with Sportline versions of the Skoda Karoq, Superb and Kodiaq, the Octavia Sportline adds a host of sporty black styling enhancements – but lacks the higher engine tune and stiffer chassis set-up of the flagship RS.
Upgrades over the current Limited Edition include a gloss black finish for the grille, badging, and bumper inserts, new 18- or 19-inch alloy wheels, Sportline labelling, and a black rear spoiler on liftback models.
Sportlines in Europe gain front sports seats trimmed in ‘ThermoFlux’ fabric, a fabric-trimmed dashboard, gloss black accents, a three-sport Sportline steering wheel, and illuminated sill plates with ‘OCTAVIA’ lettering.
Other highlights overseas include adaptive suspension with a 15mm-lower ride height, and variable-ratio “progressive” steering – both not currently available on Australia’s Limited Edition.
Pricing is yet to be confirmed, however a small premium appears likely over the current Limited Edition range, which is priced from $52,490 drive-away as a liftback, or $53,990 drive-away as a wagon.
Those prices are $4000 higher than they were at the Limited Edition’s Australian launch 12 months ago – with some features no longer available due to semiconductor shortages.
The 2023 Skoda Octavia Sportline is due in Australian showrooms sometime next year. Stay tuned to Drive for updates as the launch approaches.
Alex Misoyannis has been writing about cars since 2017, when he started his own website, Redline. He contributed for Drive in 2018, before joining CarAdvice in 2019, becoming a regular contributing journalist within the news team in 2020. Cars have played a central role throughout Alex’s life, from flicking through car magazines as a young age, to growing up around performance vehicles in a car-loving family.