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Old 11th September 2013, 04:12   #31
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Default Re: The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta View Post
No engineers to walk you all through the technical differences the new and old?
Not during / after the drive. The person who did the presentation at Timber Trail before the drive began, was apparently from Skoda's design team.
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Should have traded Wildflower for half a day at BIC.
Why trade if I can get both?
Quote:
Originally Posted by R.I.P View Post
well i spotted the new octavia near Mohan Meakin brewery near solan.
Yes, those would have been the cars - making multiple trips over the last week or so, with journalists, us, and a variety of folks whom they're showcasing the car to.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sydras View Post
How is the rear visibility in the new Octavia?
It's not among the best. Tough to reverse if the parking sensors weren't there.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
Bigger ORVMs would have helped too - the rearward view through both the ORVMs and the IRVM (which has an auto-dipping feature) is somewhat restrictive.
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Old 11th September 2013, 04:49   #32
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Default Re: The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert

The new Octavia seems to have taken some design cues from Bentley. The tight lines on this car seem to be direct result of ripping off Bentley's design principles. I guess there is nothing to be surprised about since Skoda and Bentley are under VW.

With my limited experience with Skoda service, the biggest problem i find is the cost of spare parts. It is something they should be able fix by localizing the spare parts production. It makes more sense since all VAG group cars share the same parts bin. VW could hit 3 birds with one stone by making it cheaper to own VW, Skoda and Audi. For Audi that could become a big competitive advantage over Mercedes and BMW in india. Is it the VAT issue that is stopping them?

Awesome thread ss-traveler and congratulations on winning the contest. I loved the reference to the burqa for design cues. I am eagerly waiting for the TSI's review.
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Old 11th September 2013, 04:59   #33
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Default Re: The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert

The morning walk, a swim, a heavy breakfast, and it's time to leave.

The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05409k300.jpg

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The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05436k300.jpg

It's been raining quite heavily since 7:30 AM, and we are headed to the Chail Palace for a short while. The 1.8TSi with 7-speed DSG is our companion, but we could have made as much progress with a bullock cart as we are doing with the Octavia, through the rather heavy traffic along the narrow winding roads.

The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05437k300.jpg

The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05438k300.jpg

How's the ride? asks Ardy.
Expensive.
In the crawling traffic, the 1.8 TSi's fuel economy seems to be approaching race car proportions. It finally averaged out to around 10 km/l going downhill, but involving some hard driving at times.
The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05439k300.jpg

If it wasn't the traffic, it was the dense mist slowing us down...
The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05440k300.jpg

...or just this gentleman who would pop up out of the Superb ahead and ask us to slow down and bunch up around a most inopportune corner, so he could get everybody in the frame!
The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05441k300.jpg

The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05442k300.jpg

Chail Palace. We take a break for a half-hour or so, while the Skoda media team does a photoshoot with the cars.
The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05456k300.jpg

The 3M chaps wait at Chail Palace to prep the cars for the photoshoot. In the rain!
The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05449k300.jpg

Not many opportunities to do our own photography at Chail due to the rain, but here goes...

The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05450k300.jpg

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The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05457k300.jpg

Monkeys aren't deterred by the rain - they're up to their own mischief as usual...

The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05458k300.jpg

The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05459k300.jpg
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Old 11th September 2013, 09:26   #34
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Default Re: The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert

Brilliant! Finally got some authentic insights about the Octavia '13

Quote:
Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
.oo..or just this gentleman who would pop up out of the Superb ahead and ask us to slow down and bunch up around a most inopportune corner, so he could get everybody in the frame!
Why is the superb looking tiny all of a sudden? Is that gentleman standing on the hood?
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Old 11th September 2013, 10:04   #35
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Default Re: The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert

Hi SS traveller

a few questions

Is the boot carpet reversible with the back side rubberised

did you get a chance to check the cruise control.

have you had a chance to check with them why they omitted reverse camera for such a big camera especially when cars lot cheaper provide it

does the rear a/c vent unit have a power outlet. i read somewhere it is missing

how is the overall plastic quality. it looks pretty nice but how is the tactile feel?

are all the versions beige and black or is there an all black option (including carpets)

you mentioned the under thigh support in front passenger is bad. i suppose the front passenger and driver seat to be identical except for the power settings. does it mean the driver seat too has poor under thigh support

Did you get chance to ride in the backseat. how is the under thigh support and the seat back angle. how is the ride quality in the backseat especially slow speed of the diesel with the non-independent setup.

how is the gear change in the DSG in D and S, is it jerk free?

sorry for asking you so many questions but this is the first proper review of the india spec car so pls don't mind

infact i have a quite a few more which i will save for later

Last edited by Mohan Mathew A : 11th September 2013 at 10:06.
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Old 11th September 2013, 10:18   #36
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Default Re: The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert

The official unveiling thread has been closed now, is it because Vidyut's review is coming up.

Back to topic, SS Sir, great pics and mighty congratulations on winning the challenge.

As a 5th generation Himachali and some one who prides himself in being associated with everything about Himachal, your write up and pics did full justice to that. Chail is a paradise on earth, I am sad you couldn't see it on a nice sunny spring day, when Chail is at its very best. Hope you will some other time.

How big is the car, is it like the old Octavia or bigger. In your opinion, how easy or difficult to drive in say Delhi traffic, considering you said that both ORVM and IRVM's are small.
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Old 11th September 2013, 10:33   #37
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Default Re: The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert

The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05467k300.jpg
The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05460k300.jpg

The 1.8 TSi DSG is a breeze to drive. The engine spins freely, and there's power on tap from 1500 rpm onwards. Remember, we're driving this car downhill all the way to TImber Trail and onwards to Chandigarh, and the Sunday traffic on NH22 is simply maddening. The 'box is slotted into manual, and I'm depending on engine braking to take me through the corners.

I am hoping the tyres will chirp on some of those turns on the wet road, but they refuse to; the harder I try, the more my speed gets cuts down by ESC. Where the diesel was hopping and skipping its rear end yesterday (though not exactly stepping out of line, but definitely an appreciable amount of skittering), the TSi's multilink rear suspension is keeping things on a lot more even keel. The car corners flatter, and the rear end is distinctly more sway-free.

The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05461k300.jpg

Overtaking on downhill roads is a lot more fun than when going uphill! The first few times, I misjudged how fast the car will accelerate, and a bootful of throttle got me to the redline faster than I was expecting, before I could shift up. Once used to the engine's behaviour, I enjoy flicking back and forth through the gears as we make progress, while the rest of the group keep flashing brake lights into my eyes (even I'd have been doing that, but for the manual mode!)

One little grouse - even in manual mode, the 'box refuses to shift up at times, noticeably when coasting down at 1500-1800 rpm - it keeps holding on to the lower gear, despite the fact that I want to reduce engine braking to some extent.

And then something went wrong. Or did it?

On a fast curve, I missed noticing a few potholes, and went over them rather hard - maybe I went airborne for a few milliseconds. Ouch! The car responded back with an 'ouch!' of its own - a flashing warning on the infotainment screen about a TPMS error. No information about which tyre bid goodbye, but just TPMS Error. Stopped and checked carefully all round, but the tyres were all intact and inflated. if the weren't, we would have needed to use this - a steel rim with a full sized tyre as spare...

The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05435k300.jpg

Then I learnt about how the Octavia's tyre pressure monitoring system works, thanks to Ouseph Chacko.

It appears that the Octavia has a sensorless TPMS, where the rolling diameter of each wheel is measured and compared, to identify deflation. Obviously, this is prone to generating errors. A similar system is apparently in use in the VW Jetta, and Ouseph has faced this issue earlier on Autocar's long-term test vehicle. All we needed to do was reset the TPMS, and the error warning went away.

Safety-wise, the Octavia is top notch. Six airbags, a heavy bodyshell, ABS, ESC, grippy tyres, stiff suspension, all help to inspire confidence on poor roads.

The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert-dsc05462k300.jpg
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Old 11th September 2013, 10:59   #38
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Default Re: The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert

Quote:
Originally Posted by Warwithwheels View Post
Why is the superb looking tiny all of a sudden? Is that gentleman standing on the hood?
No, he's popped himself out of the sunroof of the moving car. One Superb was fined by the cops at Dharampur on the way up for doing just this.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mohan Mathew A View Post
Is the boot carpet reversible with the back side rubberised
Didn't notice that.
Quote:
did you get a chance to check the cruise control.
Yes, Ardy did. It seems one cannot increase/decrease speed through the cruise control switch, as Ardy reports.
Quote:
have you had a chance to check with them why they omitted reverse camera for such a big camera especially when cars lot cheaper provide it
No idea. I prefer sensors to a camera though.
Quote:
does the rear a/c vent unit have a power outlet. i read somewhere it is missing
No, there's no 12V outlet next to the rear AC vent.
Quote:
how is the overall plastic quality. it looks pretty nice but how is the tactile feel?
It's really top class - feels good to the touch too.
Quote:
are all the versions beige and black or is there an all black option (including carpets)
All the cars were in beige and black combo. The carpets had been removed.
Quote:
you mentioned the under thigh support in front passenger is bad. i suppose the front passenger and driver seat to be identical except for the power settings. does it mean the driver seat too has poor under thigh support
No, the driver's seat has height and squab adjustments, and can be adjusted to be very comfortable indeed.
Quote:
Did you get chance to ride in the backseat. how is the under thigh support and the seat back angle. how is the ride quality in the backseat especially slow speed of the diesel with the non-independent setup.
I got to ride in the rear of the 1.8 TSi for some distance, and the rear seat is better than the front passenger seat - though I would have liked the seat to have little better under-thigh support and to be slightly longer, it was comfortable enough.
Quote:
how is the gear change in the DSG in D and S, is it jerk free?
Seamless in both D and S modes.
Quote:
i have a quite a few more which i will save for later
You're welcome!
Quote:
Originally Posted by eq24 View Post
Chail is a paradise on earth, I am sad you couldn't see it on a nice sunny spring day, when Chail is at its very best. Hope you will some other time.
Thanks. I've been to Chail a few times before, and I love the place except for the monkeys!
Quote:
How big is the car, is it like the old Octavia or bigger. In your opinion, how easy or difficult to drive in say Delhi traffic, considering you said that both ORVM and IRVM's are small.
On paper the 3rd generation Octavia is just about 100-odd mm longer and ~80 mm wider than the 1st generation Octavia, but I don't think that should be detrimental in any way when driving in heavy traffic. ORVMs and IRVM do restrict overall visibility to the rear, but that has more to do with wanting a wider field of view in the mountains at high speeds. At city speeds, it shouldn't be too much of a handicap.

Last edited by SS-Traveller : 11th September 2013 at 11:01.
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Old 11th September 2013, 12:32   #39
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A wonderful writeup. I thoroughly enjoyed and relived the whole experience again. Great Work Doc.

Forgot to mention. A fellow unofficial expert - Pratiik

Last edited by Samurai : 11th September 2013 at 12:56.
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Old 11th September 2013, 12:57   #40
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Default Re: The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert

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Originally Posted by car-o-phile View Post
Forgot to mention. A fellow unofficial expert - Pratiik
Aah - you didn't introduce yourself! So that makes it 3 BHPians in the group of Unofficial Experts. Let's also read about your views and impressions.
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Old 11th September 2013, 13:16   #41
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Default Another Unofficial Expert's review on 2013 Skoda Octavia

Firstly, a great work done by Doc (SS Traveller).
It is so very well explained, that i don't need to go over that experience again.
So will keep my self only to the views i have for this car.

Before that, let me brag about myself.
I was like Doc, the Unofficial Expert 1 winner as well where i got a chance to review the Skoda Rapid. The short review also got posted on AutocarIndia magazine on Page 86, March 2012 issue.



Here goes my review:

They say “Return of the Legend”
And hell Yeah! They are right.
We are talking about the New Octavia recently unveiled by Skoda.

Octavia when launched in 2001 was an instant hit and it became synonymous to Skoda. And because of this response Skoda continued selling the 1st gen Octavia till 2010 alongside Laura (2nd Gen Octavia). There was a lot on Skoda’s shoulders to live upto that image and boy they performed superbly under pressure.

The new Octavia is a tremendous car and leaps and bounds ahead of the Laura.

Looks – The new vision D Concept design philosophy has been very well incorporated in the new Octavia. The clean and sharp lines look elegant. It carries the new Skoda Badge. The butterfly grille, the clear headlamps, the straight sharp character line and the C shaped tail lamps (that made the debut in 2005) are some of the typically Skoda features. The C pillar has been stretched more towards the boot to make the typical Skoda large fifth door. The car is striking and the trim with the Bi-xenon Headlamps and daytime running LEDs did turned many heads during the drive. The TSI version can be differentiated from the TDI by rear decklid spoiler.

Inside the cabin – The Clean and clear sharp lines have been carried over to the inside. There is no messing around with curvy lines here and the dash and center console in black and beige look simple and classy. The center console carries a beautiful 5.8” screen which multifunctions as a media display, parking assist display and the interface for setting up your car. Underneath that comes the A.C. unit with two dials for the Dual zone climate control. The music system has the option of Bluetooth, Aux, CD and a connector for the smart phones and USB. The 8 speakers do the job perfectly. There are cubby holes all around the car but surprisingly the rear door pockets are not big enough to hold a 1ltr water bottle which otherwise can be placed on the rear armrest leaving no space for your arms to rest on. The boot is generous at 560 ltrs of space with the rear seats up and grows to 1580 ltrs. The seats can be adjusted in 12 ways electrically with a memory option (only in the Elegance trim). With the steering wheel adjustments you can have a perfect position for you to drive. The steering wheel has the controls for the media and for picking up calls.
How ever some features like Proximity sensor on the display (Which senses your finger approaching the touch display and highlight the icons) were of no use at all.

Mechanicals and features – The Octavia comes with the new Skoda MQB (Modularer QuerBaukasten) hat was designed for the transverse engine mounting. It emphasize mainly on strength and weight reduction. The Octavia will be launched in 3 engine options: a 1.4 TSI (140 ps), 1.8 TSI (180 ps) and a 2.0 TDI (143 ps).
The car comes with a lot of Safety Features like ESC (Electronic Stability Control), Multi collision break, Crew Protect Assistant pro-active occupant protection and 6 airbags.

Other features include AFS (Adaptive Frontlight System), Corner function in the front fog lamps, electrically adjustable and foldable rear view mirrors with automatic dimming, TPM (Tyre Pressure Monitoring), Panoramic sunroof with automatic closing in the rain and other Skoda’s “Simply Clever” features.
All said and done, shockingly Skoda does not offer reverse parking camera as standard making reversing a slightly difficult task. The parking assist for most won’t be a big help either. And the absence of the keyless start is hard to believe.

The Drive – The best segment for the review for me is surely the drive. With around 180 and 143 horses in the 1.8 TSI mill or the 2.0 TDI mill respectively the car is practically never runs out of breath.

The 1.8 TSI only comes in Elegance trim with the DSG. And boy it is amazing. This is the best of the lot and the one to go for the driving enthusiasts. The only glitch is slightly less responsive automatic but the sports/manual mode overcomes the lack smoothly. There is no noise/vibration whatsoever at the idle and the engine music can only be heard at high rpms. (I referred the noise as music as it is indeed pleasing to your ears)

The 2.0 TDI is also a proper diesel, easy to start but requires a slight push on the throttle to get this going if you pick up from the second gear (a common habit of many). There is a turbo lag till around 2000 rpm which is annoying but after that the car never is short of power and it was fairly comfortable to wander around the hilly roads of the Himalayas in the third gear.

After driving these machines the 1.4 TSI does feel a little less punchy but with initial torque band close to the 1.8 TSI, this engine will never be underpowered for lower rpms where the driver will spend most of the time. A good 18 ps more than the 1.4 TSI of Jetta gives the car sufficient punch and makes a good difference to the drive.


The Ride – The ride of the Octavia is perfect. Both the front and rear bench are one of the most comfortable in the segment. Add to that space and you have a perfect cabin. The car is less bouncy on the bad roads than the Jetta and the flattens out the potholes brilliantly. The suspensions work beautifully and so does the Skoda engineers to keep the thud out of the cabin.
The 1.4 TSI has a torsion beam on the rear and a slightly softer setup is the most comfortable. The 2.0 TDi felt a slightly stiffer on suspension setup which makes the car slightly bouncy on bad roads at low speeds but never so annoying or uncomfortable.

With ESP in place you will feel very confident pitching the car in the corners at high speed. The tires always stick to the asphalt making the Octavia a fun place to be behind the wheels.

The Verdict – It is bigger, roomier, more powerful and more comfortable. The car is surely a winner in terms of ride, handling, performance and interior space. It is the most beautiful of the lot and with ARAI figures (in kmpl) of 16.8, 14.7, 20.6 and 19.3 for 1.4 TSI, 1.8 TSI, 2.0 TDI and 2.0 TDI (A) makes it a good affordable car. My pick of form the engine options is the 1.8TSI (and will be more for the driving enthusiasts) but the 1.4 TSI offers the best package and value for money and eventually will be the most selling variant.
Everything will depend upon how Skoda will price the cars.
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Old 11th September 2013, 13:26   #42
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Default Re: The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert

So the bottomline Sir, would you buy it?
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Old 11th September 2013, 13:26   #43
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Default Re: The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert

Quote:
Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
Yes, Ardy did. It seems one cannot increase/decrease speed through the cruise control switch, as Ardy reports.
Seems odd and unlikely since the Laura cruse control does let us increase and decrease speed through the cruise control switch. They must be having something on the steering or stalk to enable this to happen.

PS:
Definitely a 5 start thread. Superb narration.

Last edited by ACM : 11th September 2013 at 13:29.
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Old 11th September 2013, 13:39   #44
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Default Re: The 2013 Skoda Octavia | Views of an Unofficial Expert

Nice report Doc. I have been following Octy reports n reviews for quite some time now. Hope this time they come up the proper vRS.

As for Cruise control , the speed can be increased with the rocker button towards RES and decrease press towards SET position. Cant comment if ESC deactivates CC when it comes into effect.

As it rained , did the rain sensing wiping worked ? It never worked properly in my vRS.
Read somewhere that now the control is there to switch it on or off from infotainment menu.
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Old 11th September 2013, 13:40   #45
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Originally Posted by dkaile View Post
So the bottomline Sir, would you buy it?
Only if Skoda offers a 100,000-km/5-year all-labour-and-materials-inclusive service package for Rs.100,000 + taxes. If so, then a definite YES. It isn't the car that's bad, it's the service support. And I'm not interested to fight over minor issues with an asinine Skoda ASS. I hope you're listening, Mr. Rao.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ACM View Post
Seems odd and unlikely since the Laura cruse control does let us increase and decrease speed through the cruise control switch. They must be having something on the steering or stalk to enable this to happen.
Ardy is a vRS owner as well as a former first-gen Octavia diesel owner. He ought to know. Will wait for a clarification from others too, esp. from Viddy after his drive.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ACM View Post
PS:
Definitely a 5 start thread. Superb narration.
Thanks!
Quote:
Originally Posted by v&v View Post
Nice report Doc.
Thanks, Vinod.
Quote:
As for Cruise control , the speed can be increased with the rocker button towards RES and decrease press towards SET position. Cant comment if ESC deactivates CC when it comes into effect.
No idea. Ardy tried a few times, and he was miffed at the fact that he couldn't do it.
Quote:
As it rained , did the rain sensing wiping worked ? It never worked properly in my vRS.
Read somewhere that now the control is there to switch it on or off from infotainment menu.
The rain sensing wipers work, but not exactly perfectly. You need to run manual mode a couple of times before the sensors decide that this is the cleanest the glass can get - and then the system maintains wiper movement for sometime - before going back to square one. Not sure if it can be turned on/off separately, but there is a control slider to change the rate of intermittent wipe.

Last edited by SS-Traveller : 11th September 2013 at 13:52. Reason: Responding to v&v
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