​UK drivers losing more than three hours a year defrosting their windscreen while leaving their engine running, research from Škoda finds​

​More than half (51%) of UK motorists are unaware that they could face fines of up to £80 for leaving their engine idling when defrosting their windscreen in cold weather on a public road.**

Defrosting a car’s windscreen is a common chore in winter, with Škoda research finding that a third (35%) of motorists spend between five and seven minutes on average doing it, while a further tenth of drivers (13%) spend a total of eight to 10 minutes. A quarter (25%) of drivers spend at least two to four minutes clearing their screen when it is iced over.

When asked what methods they commonly use to combat the frost, the most popular answer was using the car’s heating system (63%), followed by an ice scraper (57%), de-icer (44%), windscreen wipers (27%), boiled water (15%), while more than one in ten (13%) admitted to using their bank card or plastic card. The same research found more than three quarters (76%) turn their engine on and keep it running while defrosting their car to ‘aid’ the process.

Nearly three quarters (74%) of UK drivers are also unaware that electric vehicles (EVs) can be ‘preconditioned’ via an app to defrost the screen before they even get into their car on a frosty morning.

​The Skoda Enyaq iV may be preconditioned to defrost the windscreen, heat the cabin, and charge the battery in cold weather so that it is ready to drive for a predetermined time using the Skoda Connect app or by setting the parameters on the infotainment system.

Drivers who keep the charging cable connected when preconditioning the car, avoid drawing energy from the battery and ensure the maximum possible driving range when they set off.

Drivers could save up to 10 minutes a day by using the preconditioning feature of Škoda’s electric cars. More than two thirds (67%) of drivers would be likely to use preconditioning to save time, fuel, and standing in the cold by remotely defrosting their windscreen in advance if they had an EV.

To increase heating efficiency and comfort during winter, the Enyaq iV also features a heated steering wheel, heated front seats, heated front washer nozzles, and tri-zone climate control.

Unbeatable: Superb Estate takes record-breaking eighth title in a row as Škoda drives off with five What Car? Awards

Škoda has added to its remarkable collection of What Car? titles by securing no fewer than five more accolades for 2023. The Czech brand enjoyed another busy night at the annual awards ceremony - widely regarded as the ‘Oscars’ of the automotive industry – with the Superb named as an overall category winner and the Scala, Octavia and Karoq all recognised as Best Buys in their respective categories.

Leading Škoda’s 2023 silverware haul was the Superb Estate, which extended its remarkable winning streak by taking home the What Car? Best Estate award for a record-breaking eighth year in the row. The Czech estate has now been named as the best in class since 2015, with its combination of value, practicality and comfort proving to be an unbeatable combination.

The Škoda Scala also recorded a back-to-back victory, being named Best Family Car for Value for the second year in a row. The Octavia was another repeat winner, retaining its title of Best Family Car for Practicality. As in previous years, the Octavia wowed the judging panel with its broad range of talents. The Octavia was another repeat winner, retaining its title of Best Family Car for Practicality. As in previous years, the Octavia wowed the judging panel with its broad range of talents. "As a hatchback that dwarfs most cars for interior and boot space, the Skoda Octavia remains the family car to beat for practicality.” explained Steve Huntingford. “It offers six-footers loads of room for lounging in comfort, plus we managed to fit 10 carry-on suitcases in the boot – four more than most rivals cars can take."

Completing Škoda’s impressive trophy haul was the recently updated Karoq, which was named Best Family SUV for Value by the What Car? judging panel. In total, Škoda has won 18 What Car? titles in just three years, making it one of the most decorated brands in the industry. In total, Škoda cars won 43 industry awards across all sectors of the automotive media in 2022.