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Old 9th February 2016, 21:58   #61
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Default Re: Czech cousins

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Originally Posted by avinash_clt View Post
Yes this one would be the same car. I will get to drive the Superb only when I am back home for vacation, which would take a while

I can definitely take my brother's word for it, Laura vRS is still a better driver's car. Thing is you expect the Laura vRS to be an hard edged enthusiast car and its calmer nature for everday use surprise you (unlike the focused Octy vRS or the Abarth Punto). The Superb, as he notes, you step into it expecting a comfy luxo-barge with all bells and whistles, but surprises you with the performance / fun on tap


- Avinash
There were 2 for sale actually.Same shade, the other one was a 2011, 33k run example if I remember correctly. I had a TD of that one actually, the only factor that pulled me back was the sheer size and the fact that Im biased towards the manual Laura vRS..in blue.Seems I'll really have to wait it out.

You have best of both worlds.I can only imagine what straight line acceleration in the v6 beast must feel like.Keep us posted on the driving experience once you lay hands on it.
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Old 14th February 2016, 00:25   #62
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Default Re: Czech cousins

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Originally Posted by octane1002 View Post
There were 2 for sale actually.Same shade, the other one was a 2011, 33k run example if I remember correctly. .
Yes, there were two on sale by the same dealer. The price for the 2011 car wasn't justified in my opinion. In both cases the car was out of EW period. The added maintenance services required for the 2010 car (Nov-2010 actually) with higher kms on the ODO still worked out to be cheaper, along with small benefits in life time tax that would have to paid when the car is going to be registered in Kerala. The car we finally chose had a well documented service history and that sealed the deal.


- Avinash
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Old 31st March 2016, 13:15   #63
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Are you visited Petes Calicut today(on 31st March). I was there to do a smart wax for my GT. Saw a black Peted VRS there. Is that you?
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Old 31st March 2016, 16:37   #64
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Default Re: Black Panther - Skoda Laura vRS

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Are you visited Petes Calicut today(on 31st March). I was there to do a smart wax for my GT. Saw a black Peted VRS there. Is that you?
Yes that would be our car, we had sent it for interior/exterior cleaning. It is not Pete'd/remapped between, just the stickers
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Old 11th December 2017, 23:26   #65
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Laura VRS 50k@5y ownership report


I thought of using this thread instead of starting new to share my 5 years experience with Laura VRS. Both me and Avinash got hands onto identical black panther around same time. Sorry Avinash for hijacking your thread!

Well I can't believe its 5 years already!! But boy! I cherished every moment with this Black beast.

To start with, let me say it still gives me adrenaline rush every time I give it a throttle.
I usually do these 1/4 mile sprints and the way this beast pulls all the way to red line is just crazy. I love those 10-80kmph in 2nd and taking all the way to the red line, its just feels so out of this world! I typically do these sprints on weekends after long and stressful week and mostly with my son accompanying me. We both are madly in love with horse Power and none better than Laura!

Its been truly satisfying & trouble free 5 years, especially when you consider all the Skoda horror stories. So let me first talk about After sales service

Skoda and JMD dealership Ė
I have seen them grow & I literally mean this!
I still remember those initial 2-3 visits to JMD and I would make it a point to sit there and get the car serviced in front of me. Also use this time to build relationship with service executive and technicians. I tried to understand, why their service levels are indifferent compared to others (especially Japanese counterparts) after all, most of their staff also moves around and many of them have worked with other car manufacturers in past. I could identify few things - lack of stringent process & audits both from Skoda and dealer, lack of ownership from Skoda, aggressive sales targets. I understand everyone has sales targets, but in this case customer satisfaction was not in the priority list at all.
So I knew only way I could survive this is by building good rapport and ensure I donít become another Skoda victim. There were few other things which worked in my -
  • JMD Bhandup, Mumbai. They are probably the most honest.
  • Laura VRS itself, dealership had almost none vRS and always felt special
  • and finally reliable TSI MT which is as good as it gets. Touch wood !!

Also Skoda & JDM dealership has put in lot of efforts to correct their misdeeds from past. It will take some time before the bad name can be corrected. They still have long way to go before they can match reliable Toyotas and Hondas. But at the same time those DSG transmissions are also improving and it is certainly helping dealership.
In fact talking to dealership, I learned, Rapid is their bread & butter which is one of the most reliable from Skoda brand and you hardly hear any horror stories around Rapid.
Some of the areas where I found they have improved over the years Ė
  • Regularly talking to customer and keeping them updated
  • Committing and delivering on time. They now have mandate to delivery regular service vehicle on same day
  • Spares availability is still not their strong area. They are expensive and available on-order, but their turnaround has improved over last few years
  • Customer satisfaction seems to be back to top priority and its not only about feedback from their call centre, but seems to be part of service advisorís objectives. I remember one the guys telling me to give like on Skoda FB page and tag advisor, if Iím really satisfied
  • More transparent with sharing service record through Skoda app
So for me they are getting better. Okay enough of Skoda, lets come back to vRS now.

Ownership - 50K@5Y
Although this is 2012 registration, but its actually 2011 kit. There were no 2012 vRS with most dealers. I think it was that time when everyone was behind diesel with rising petrol prices. So it was actually right time to get petrol at bargain price and thatís what I did; although nervously. So technically this is ~6-year-old car with 8-10 months lying in Aurangabad factory.

One thing I really appreciate about Europeans cars is their Quality & premium feel. They may not be most reliable, but all their products are few notches above competitors in terms of quality & class.
In my case I can also say, they proved reliable and not just under the hood, but overall.
It still looks fresh inside and out. All back interiors are still fresh. Everything is so intact and works like new, those Alcantra seats, all the knobs, sunroof; in fact everything.
Also one thing from my experience and this is just my personal view, I never really liked interior polish, for me; it does more harm than giving it a new life.
Exterior though, I made a point to give it a 3M treatment every year. This is even more important with black colour and open parking in Mumbai. It helped me keep exterior intact & shining all these years.

Okay, but its not that everything was rosy all these years. I had few issues, but luckily nothing under the hood.
I had both front windows one-touch motor fail. It was while pulling down window at toll-naka, it just fell-off, I could hear that motor give up and fall inside the door panel. This was during the monsoon, but luckily for me I managed to pull back slowly. It was repaired under warranty in straight 2 days (on 2 occasions for both front windows). And yes they are expensive, it would have costed me ~10k each had it not under warranty. Apart from this, accident work for small dent on bonnet and battery gave up couple of times.

So what about things I still donít like even after 5 years of ownership?
  • This isnít VRS in true sense, except for VRS body kit & badging, all black interiors and stiffer suspension, it is just regular TSI. And especially after launch of Octavia vRS it does feel really under powered VRS.
  • Handling although is good and nothing really to complaint, but not the best. For me, my Cedia was best handler. City driving and manoeuvring was always at ease with Cedia and Skoda could have done better with Laura
  • Clutch peddle is really hard and it can be tiring in city driving. I think this is true for most of Skoda and VW
  • Some basic missing features like Auto climate and Audi controls on steering. All this was available on L&K but not on VRS

Things I still cherish !
  • Its most fun to drive car and gives you more every time you press the pedal, no matter which gear. It has good gear ratio with wide range giving it power even in lower bands.
  • Straight line acceleration is just best in class, there are only very few who can outclass Laura in this department. I drove 320d few times and dare I say, Laura can give it run for money. It has been consistent all these years thanks to strong Turbocharged engine
  • Turning radius is also great and it never gives you feeling of sitting in full size sedan.
  • High speed cornering and lane changing is breeze and with ASR/Traction control you are always in control. Steering is also main reason for this, it has good feedback and gives you complete feel of car all the time. Although wheel bearings on front right are giving-up now and need replacement.

To sum-up Laura VRS has been great daily commuter as well as for those enthusiastic highway drives. Thumps-up to Skoda & JMD as well

So whatís next?? How about remap? This is something I have been thinking for last 2 year, specially after completing 4 years of warranty, but couldnít really convince myself and so decided to give it a pass.

With that being ruled out, the decision is straight forward and like they say, every good thing has to come to an end. Iím now on the look out for upgrade and been exploring options for last 4-5 months.

I will post more on upgrade options over next few days and would look for suggestions from all Team Bhpians.



Note - I have no affiliation to Skoda or JMD and this is purely based on my personal experience
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Old 12th December 2017, 11:24   #66
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Default Re: Black Panther - Skoda Laura vRS

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Originally Posted by vishaltanksale View Post
Laura VRS 50k@5y ownership report


Although wheel bearings on front right are giving-up now and need replacement.
Good to read the long term experience of your Laura. I own a 2010 Laura TSi (kit from 2009) and completed 55k so far in a little less than 8 years. Absolutely trouble free ownership and what a car, can't have enough of it.

BTW, what are the symptoms that make you feel that front wheel bearings are gone?
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Old 12th December 2017, 14:38   #67
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Default Re: Black Panther - Skoda Laura vRS

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Originally Posted by anandpadhye View Post
Good to read the long term experience of your Laura. I own a 2010 Laura TSi (kit from 2009) and completed 55k so far in a little less than 8 years. Absolutely trouble free ownership and what a car, can't have enough of it.

BTW, what are the symptoms that make you feel that front wheel bearings are gone?
You can feel this on steering wheel and little bit of thud inside cabin as well. This is more visible during low speed and you are moving over rough patch.
But then few weeks back, it started giving ABS senor indication on dash and after ECU check bearing mechanical failure was confirmed. I had this problem with earlier Cedia as well, so I knew the these symptoms
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