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In-depth reviews

Skoda Fabia Estate

"The Skoda Fabia Estate is a practical, affordable and generously equipped small family car"

Carbuyer Rating

4.2 out of 5

Owners Rating

4.3 out of 5

Read owner reviews

Pros

  • Mostly excellent engine range
  • Very spacious inside
  • Well equipped

Cons

  • Lacks upmarket touch of VW
  • Best engines are quite expensive
  • Entry-level 1.0-litre engine disappoints

The Skoda Fabia Estate is a small supermini-based estate car, offering impressive space, along with very low running costs and an affordable price.

Its nearest rival is the significantly cheaper Dacia Logan MCV, which offers plenty of space but feels less well built, while former rivals like the estate version of the SEAT Ibiza and Renault Clio are no longer available in this country.

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A mild facelift in mid-2018 saw diesel engines discontinued but there are three petrols, all returning around 50mpg. The non-turbo 1.0-litre MPI petrol, with 74bhp, is worth avoiding because it can feel slightly out of its depth when the Fabia has a few passengers on board with luggage, and on faster roads.

With 94 or 108bhp, the 1.0-litre TSI feels far more capable thanks to its turbocharged power delivery and we’d recommend the latter considering it doesn't cost a huge amount extra. Acceleration from 0-62mph in 9.7 seconds is quite brisk, while economy of 50.4mpg and CO2 emissions of 107g/km are respectable figures.

For such a small car, the Fabia Estate’s boot is remarkable: its 530-litre capacity is five litres larger than that of a Ford Mondeo Estate, a car from two classes above and costing around 50% more than the Skoda.

There are four trim levels, called S, SE, SE L and Monte Carlo, with SE offering a tempting balance of equipment and affordability. The S is too basic for most, making do without alloy wheels or air-conditioning, but it does at least get LED daytime running lights, Bluetooth and a 6.5-inch touchscreen. The SE L and Monte Carlo trims are more opulent and desirable, with convenience and styling upgrades.

The Skoda Fabia finished 64th out of the 100 cars ranked in our 2019 Driver Power owner satisfaction survey of cars currently on sale in the UK, with just 11.5% of owners reporting a fault. Further reassurance comes in the form of the Fabia’s five-star Euro NCAP crash-test rating, with all cars getting an impressive roster of airbags and electronic safety kit.

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Richard is a former editor of Carbuyer, as well as sister site DrivingElectric.com, and he's now Deputy Editor at Auto Express. Having spent a decade working in the automotive industry, he understands exactly what makes new car buyers tick.

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