SKODA FABIA: Fabia-lous version of popular seller

1600091_FabiaTwinVALUE for money’ and class leading space – two of the virtues that have built up a worldwide following for Skoda and their range of cars.

The Czech manufacturer has certainly benefitted from being under the VW Group umbrella in recent times and cars like the Fabia have been the mainstay of their success, playing a crucial role in moving the brand along to what it is today.

Sales worldwide of the Fabia total over four million in its 19 year span, and last year the UK was Skoda’s fourth biggest market for Fabia with 19,400 registered. A lot of us must think they’re Fabia-lous….

1600089_FABIA_front-leftThe newly launched fourth generation model is set to build on that, hitting showrooms with a bolder new look front and rear and better levels of equipment, although it still retains the generic look of the Fabia that motorists have bought into in the past. Instantly noticeable is the bold new grille with its vertical slats and chrome frame.

The new range is all petrol and boasts new safety systems with trim levels everyone will recognise – S, SE, SE L, Monte Carlo and Colour Edition.

The engines are 999cc three cylinder units, used across the VW Group, with the entry level MPI unit having an output of 75PS and the two turbocharged and direct injection TSIs dishing up 95PS and 110PS.

Opt for the range topping 110 and you can specify a seven speed DSG gearbox, which makes it a very refined and smooth operator, and very responsive into the bargain. Otherwise you get a five speed manual, which itself has a workmanlike and precise feel to its operation.

1514736_Fabia_FL_FRONT_REDThe option is hatch or estate and while some might question whether the Fabia is really a supermini, because there’s not a lot miniscule about its dimensions, it offers you a healthy sized slice of metal which will carry a family of five in more than adequate comfort and with room to spare.

The hatch has one of the biggest boots in the small car segment while the estate does have the largest boot in its segment.

Which is immediately evident inside inside. The driver can adjust the seat to allow for a lot of legroom without crippling anyone behind. And there’s a decent sized soft headrest which can be adjusted to suit most drivers.

A good level of equipment has always been a feature with Fabia, and the latest version comes with LED daytime lights, Front assist and a multi-function trip computer across the range.

885618_76953skoAnd no new Skoda would be complete without their Simply Clever features, now improved as the ice scraper now features a tyre tread depth. There’s also a brolly under the passenger seat.

The suspension seems very compliant, not harsh in any way shape or form, and it coped well with some bumpy Buckinghamshire country roads on the launch. There was certainly no thumping and crashing as various assorted potholes were negotiated on the test route.

Driven sensibly any car will give you pretty decent fuel consumption, and the Fabia was well into the high 40s on the launch, proving you can eke out your tankful if you really want to.

The new mk 4 Fabia – proof you can have your cake and eat it.

FASTFACTS: Skoda Fabia SE L hatchback; Price: £17,585 (£18,550 as tested); Engine: 1.0 litre, three cylinder, petrol; Power: 110PS; Torque: 200Nm; Transmission; seven speed DSG; Top speed: 120mph; 0-62mph: 10.1secs; Economy: 60.1; CO2 emissions: 106g/km.

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