The 245’s pricing has as much to do with its ranking in the VW Group as it does with any like-for-like rival.

Consequently, the hatch starts at £27,595 (around £2k cheaper than the Golf GTI Performance with which it shares a drivetrain) and the wagon is from £28,795 (around £2.5k cheaper than the more powerful – but smaller – Leon Cupra ST).

Nic Cackett

Nic Cackett

Road tester
It’s expected to have poorer residuals than an equivalent Ford Focus ST but far better than a Renault Mégane GT

This puts Skoda’s estate in good stead with the competition: a Focus ST-3 Estate is £28,565. That the list essentially ends there illustrates the convenient idiosyncrasy of the vRS. There are other fast estates, of course – just none at the 245’s output or sticker price.

As the top-spec Octavia, it is also notably well equipped: our test car’s 19in wheels, Amundsen touchscreen, cruise control, heated seats, dual-zone climate, parking sensors, full LED headlights, auto wipers and wi-fi hotspot were all standard.

Only the glaring absence of the Dynamic Chassis Control and a variable boot floor stands out – although even with both ticked (as you certainly must) the estate remains shy of £30k.

Given our 32.6mpg average, the 245 will probably not be cheap to run – a fact corroborated by its inability to best 40mpg even at a steady cruise – but hot hatch performance obliges hot hatch economy.

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Only secondhand values give real cause for worry: expect the 245 to lose half its value by the end of the second year.

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