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Old 24th February 2009, 18:16   #1
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Default Skoda Laura L&K DSG, Finally took the plunge

Hello,

I have been looking for an upgrade over my Baleno going to complete 6 years in April and have been vacillating between Civic, Captiva, CRV, Outlander and Skoda was never under consideration for most part of the deliberations over 6 months preceding the purchase. The logic said Civic and the heart wanted an SUV until someone suggested Laura. From the feature and specifications perspective there was no issue; laura was the winner but serious doubts remained over the running costs (They still remain and I have to keep all my fingers crossed on that) and the number of horror stories on this forum itself.

Then I changed my job and had an option of a company lease therby being able to afford an upgrade over civic in the same price to me (Saving 33% over the EMI being coming out of the taxable salary).

I did some crude calculations on the TCO for the options I had and factored in the cost of maintaining the Skoda at double that of a civic (actually more than that as I used it as a percentage of the price and made it double for Skoda over the civic), so basically I tricked myself with a set of logics to convince me that it has to be Laura!! .
The TCO for the SUVs just could not work out because of 3-4 lac additional premium over Laura (Which is already over the same amount on my original plan of a Civic) and the running costs due to most being petrol

Also I compared it to Jetta as well, afterall both Laura and Jetta are supposed to be essentially the same. I was put off by the “stiff upper lip” attitude of the VW dealership in Delhi wherin they did not have anything to say on the positives which Jetta has over Laura in terms of features, reliability etc. but a motherhood statement like Jetta is much more superior and quality product as it if from the parent company VW. Also I did not like the car over Laura and the dealership network is non existent so far.

Finally got the machine, Laura L&K DSG Silver color on 22nd February along with the 3 years 50K regular services package and have already clocked 1300Kms @ 13.6 KMpl.

Im not really an enthusiast and an auto techie, so I will not be able to comment much on the detailed aspects, but so far the experience has been very good and the ride is great. I have driven it on highway as well as the bumper to bumper traffic in Delhi and it does feel like a worthy upgrade!

Most of the members would be aware of the standard features which Laura L&K has, but Im listing below a few which are not mentioned in the sales brochures and are pretty neat and practical. Im discovering more as Im putting in more kilometers and time.


1) Pinch control for all windows including the sunroof. I have by mistake hurt my kids and my wife more than once while closing the windows from the driver seat on my Baleno.
2) Split driver side rearview mirror where the outer part is angled outwards thereby reducing/eliminating the blindspot.
3) Windows including the sunroof can be closed with the remote after getting off the car.
4) On an upslope, the brake remains activated for 2 seconds even after releasing the pedal, giving time to press the gas and avoid the use of the handbrake. I have read it in the booklet but have not tested it yet.
5) Useful and well thought of storage spaces eg. Little clips inside the passenger side glove box compartment cover for keeping the RC etc. handy.

The above is not really a technical ownership review but I plan to learn a lot from the experts here and make the right observations to avoid, identify and fix the problems and try to keep those surprises in running costs away.

Cheers!

Dancc

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Old 24th February 2009, 19:52   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danc View Post
Hello,

I have been looking for an upgrade over my Baleno going to complete 6 years in April and have been vacillating between Civic, Captiva, CRV, Outlander and Skoda was never under consideration for most part of the deliberations over 6 months preceding the purchase. The logic said Civic and the heart wanted an SUV until someone suggested Laura. From the feature and specifications perspective there was no issue; laura was the winner but serious doubts remained over the running costs (They still remain and I have to keep all my fingers crossed on that) and the number of horror stories on this forum itself.

Then I changed my job and had an option of a company lease therby being able to afford an upgrade over civic in the same price to me (Saving 33% over the EMI being coming out of the taxable salary).

I did some crude calculations on the TCO for the options I had and factored in the cost of maintaining the Skoda at double that of a civic (actually more than that as I used it as a percentage of the price and made it double for Skoda over the civic), so basically I tricked myself with a set of logics to convince me that it has to be Laura!! .
The TCO for the SUVs just could not work out because of 3-4 lac additional premium over Laura (Which is already over the same amount on my original plan of a Civic) and the running costs due to most being petrol

Also I compared it to Jetta as well, afterall both Laura and Jetta are supposed to be essentially the same. I was put off by the “stiff upper lip” attitude of the VW dealership in Delhi wherin they did not have anything to say on the positives which Jetta has over Laura in terms of features, reliability etc. but a motherhood statement like Jetta is much more superior and quality product as it if from the parent company VW. Also I did not like the car over Laura and the dealership network is non existent so far.
Dear Danc; Congrats and can we all know the on road cost price of the same. One of my friend is planning to buy the same. Also some feedback about the dealer, discount offered, freebies etc. would be helpful in deciding the next course of action.
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Old 24th February 2009, 20:07   #3
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congrats dancc! great review - I didn't know about those features. The upslope brake feature seemsto be very clever.
please post pics soon - interior and exterior!
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Old 24th February 2009, 20:12   #4
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Congratulations for your new car

Please keep us updated with long term reports and add to the humongous collection of knowledge that is T-BHP.
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Old 24th February 2009, 23:20   #5
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congrats danc on that super buy!
laura with an auto transmission is real fun to drive. enjoy her to the fullest.
waiting for some pics now.
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Old 25th February 2009, 01:35   #6
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Default Congratulations Danc

Congratulations on a good buy. The laura is a good car and is fun too. The costs are not as high as you fear, they might sky rocket if you push the car really hard and thrash it about causing damage.

I have found the Laura to be solidly built, rock steady on the road and pretty quick. Service costs are about 5K each time.

Cheers,
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Old 25th February 2009, 09:06   #7
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Good going Danc and congrats on your new purchase. Laura is the right upgrade over baleno.
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Old 25th February 2009, 14:49   #8
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Congratulations on the Laura, Danc! The Laura DSG is an awesome diesel; fabulous road manners, high level of equipment, best automatic gearbox in India & good fuel economy. It's a pretty nice car to drive.

I only hope that the Laura doesn't give you any trouble. 70% of Lauras are problematic, here is to hoping that your car is part of the other 30%. And watch out for those dealers : Don't accept their statements at face value.

Do keep updating this thread as your odometer keeps ticking. And what about pictures?
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Old 25th February 2009, 15:59   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
70% of Lauras are problematic,
Really? And I thought that its a premium, luxury and issue less car. GTO can you please let us all know what kind of problems people are facing in laura. One of my friend is going to buy one and should better warn him beforehand.
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Old 25th February 2009, 16:19   #10
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Thanks a lot for your wishes,

I got the car at the On Road price of 1,721,496 including Registration Insurance and 11,111 for the 3 years service package and the corporate discount of 30,000. I got the dealer to give me the Teflon coating, the Laura decorative door sill covers (Listed at 6376 on the skoda website). It also came fitted with the floor mats and the front and rear mud flaps.

One correction, I got this car on 22nd January and not 22nd February as I mentioned earlier.

Am a bit concerned by the 70% problematic comment by GTO, but hey, Ive already taken the plunge and only hope for the best. I plan to keep the car for 3 years and hopefully it will survive till then!

Regarding the pictures, yes I will take some over the weekend and post.

Best Reagrds,

Danc
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Old 25th February 2009, 16:47   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sparkguy View Post
Really? And I thought that its a premium, luxury and issue less car. GTO can you please let us all know what kind of problems people are facing in laura. One of my friend is going to buy one and should better warn him beforehand.
Just do a search on the forum. There are plenty of threads detailing the problems faced by Laura owners.
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Old 25th February 2009, 16:50   #12
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Congratulations on your Laura, Danc.

Have a good time with her.
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Old 25th February 2009, 16:55   #13
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congrats danc, laura sure is hoots to drive and in L&K trim it has tons of features to keep you exciting. What color is it?
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Old 2nd March 2009, 13:02   #14
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Hello All,

Thanks again for your wishes and interest. I do not have the pictures so far as I could not prime up my car for the photoshoot. I have 2 little kids and it is a bit hard for them to understand my feelings and keep the chips and cookies out!

It was a busy weekend though, 250Kms on the road (almost 200Km bumper to bumper and 50 odd late in the night on the hilly highway).

My drive from Gurgaon to Faridabad and back late at night on the hilly road was blissful to say the least. My wife, two kids (2.5 and 5) and my mother in law at the back were very comfortably asleep at the back while I enjoyed my time at the wheel.The car handled extremely well on the winding hilly road and the headlights gave perfect visibility. I do not think that you need the Bi-Xenons or the pencil beams at all.

Tested the upslope brake feature, it works on a reasonable slope but on a steep gradient you still need the hand brake (as I expected).

Im also getting some comfort from the real stories from the people who have either had their Skodas working fine or have known people owning the trouble free Skodas.

Cheers and I will keep the forum posted.

Danc
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Old 2nd March 2009, 15:56   #15
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Yup, the Laura has awesome road manners. She'll keep you happy. How about pictures? Any mods / add-ons planned?
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