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I'd long suspected that the car had an internal SIM for core services such as emergency call and certain GPS related services. On a closer look, there are a range of about 10 services that seem to be reliant on it. There are a further 10-15 services that run off either 3rd party data SIM (if your car has a slot. My Edition does not) or hotspot, for things like Google Earth, etc.

There's an important differentation here between what appears to be an internal SIM that is built into the car, supporting core services, and a 3rd party SIM slot for users to insert their own paid for data SIMs, for other services.

One of the things I'd noticed was that the Skoda Connect phone app was able to interrogate the car, to pull driving distance, location, fuel consumption, mileage, locked/unlocked, etc AND also push requests like 'flash' and 'honk and flash', remotely. This was all achievable without being in the car and several buildings away so: not reliant on 3rd party SIM slot (it doesn't have one), and no hotspot (phone not in the car), so... there must be a built in, internal SIM.

It would also explain why the Edition comes with a subscription for some Skoda Connect app online services - I remember the Skoda Connect app informing me that my Edition came with a 2 year subscription to some services. In the car's settings, you can see licenses for each of the Skoda Connect online services - many running until 1/6/2018 and some (emergency call) running until 2031.

As of a month or so ago, ALL of the services reliant on the internal SIM - including emergency call - stopped working. All of the services dependent on the internal SIM are reporting 'no connection'. A test emergency call additionally reports 'no signal' even when my own phone is attached by cable and connected via Bluetooth - so it must be dependent on the internal SIM. Hotspot enabled services continued working just fine with my phone as a hotspot.

It is worth noting that the Skoda Connect services that seem reliant on the car's internal SIM died at around the same time I successfully tested a remote 'honk and flash' via the app. This may be coincidence but it might not.

I've had a ticket open with Skoda Customer Care for a month. They're very good at phoning me back but little progress has been made. Today's advice is to take it into a dealership. The agent was suggesting that this had been encountered before and that it had been fixed with an ECU reset and terminal replacement (!).
 

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2017MY Editions didn't come with the SIM slot as standard.
 
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