Skoda Fabia hatchback
Price £10,600 - £17,875
- Generous standard equipment
- Very spacious for a supermini
- Large, well-shaped boot
- No longer as good value as it was
- 1.0-litre engine not strong enough
- Some rivals are better to drive
At a glance
“Like many of the brand’s cars, the Skoda Fabia puts practicality and space ahead of all other considerations. It’s comfortable, too, but not as good to drive as some rivals.”
In recent times, the Skoda Fabia has been carving out its own niche as the car in the supermini class that puts space, practicality and comfort above all else. While the Ford Fiesta prioritises a fantastic driving experience, the Audi A1 dominates the upmarket end of the class, the Renault Clio majors on style and the Kia Rio focuses on value choice, the Skoda continues to go its own way.
Yet although the Fabia isn’t the top-value choice it once was, it's hardly overpriced. And when you consider the quality of the interior, the ever-improving image of the Skoda badge and the generous standard equipment, you shouldn’t feel short-changed.
The Fabia benefits from a wide range of efficient and powerful engines that are shared across the Volkswagen Group, also being used in the Volkswagen Polo and SEAT Ibiza. We’d avoid the underpowered 59 and 73bhp 1.0-litre petrols, as they just aren’t powerful enough for a car this size car.
Our pick of the range is the 90bhp turbocharged 1.2-litre. It has a good spread of power across the rev range, while also being smooth and economical. It’ll return 60.1mpg fuel economy and emits just 107g/km of CO2, resulting in a tax bill of £20 a year.
If you’d prefer a diesel, our recommendation is the 104bhp 1.4-litre. It's easily quick enough to keep up with traffic – both in and out of town – and will return 70.8mpg. This means CO2 emissions of 95g/km, exempting it from road tax and putting it in the 17% Benefit-in-Kind (BiK) company-car tax band.
Our favourite trim level is the mid-range SE, which gives you alloy wheels, a multifunction leather steering wheel and air-conditioning. It also boasts an upgraded stereo and MirrorLink (a system that allows you to control your mobile phone's apps – including navigation – from the car's touchscreen).
As is becoming the norm in this class, the Fabia scored the maximum five stars when Euro NCAP crash-tested it. It gets plenty of standard safety kit, including a plethora of airbags, anti-lock brakes, traction control, stability control, two rear ISOFIX child-seat mounts and a tyre-pressure monitoring system.
Every Skoda Fabia model is cheap to run, with the fuel-efficient GreenLine returning more than 90mpg
The Skoda Fabia still trails the Ford Fiesta for outright driver enjoyment, but it feels stable at high speeds and quiet around town
There’s no denying the new Skoda Fabia is a step up from its predecessor, but it lacks some of the soft-touch plastic seen in rivals
The Skoda Fabia is an extremely practical supermini, offering more boot space than a Ford Focus
The new Skoda Fabia should follow in the footsteps of the rest of the range, with top-notch owner satisfaction and a five-star safety rating