How can you spot one of these on the road? Changes have been made to the front end of the Citigo body to improve aerodynamics, LED running lights have been added and the Toyota badge is blue.
Skoda is in transition. The Czech car company has long since left its jokey past in the rear view mirror, and has been gaining increasing respect for its well made, soundly engineered, keenly priced models. The winged arrow company badge has been given a clean-cut new look, with a streamlined design that sheds all the old fussy detailing of the previous logo, and with modern chrome in place of the old traditional green. This is the first car to wear it, the Skoda Citigo, new in the range from summer 2012.
The Citigo is one of the Volkswagen Group’s city car triplet models, three small hatchbacks all built in the same factory in Bratislava. They are fundamentally the same underneath, and share a similar bodyshell, but each one has its own unique external design features to differentiate them. Their cabins designs are also quite different. The other two are the VW up! and the Seat Mii.
Skoda’s design chief Jozef Kaban is responsible for the styling of the Citigo, and he and his team have given it a strong Skoda family face with a slatted front grille between eye-shaped headlamps. It is instantly recognisable at the back as Skoda’s baby model by its C-shaped tail lights.
The Citigo is available with a choice of two engines, both three-cylinder one-litre units, with differing power outputs: 60 bhp or 75 bhp. The transmission choice is five-speed manual or five-speed auto. Trim options are S, SE and Elegance. Prices start from £7,630 for an S 1.0 manual 3-door and rise to £10,415 for an Elegance 1.0 ASG auto 5-door.
With such a small engine, the Citigo punches above its weight on performance. Under the bonnet is a 999 cc, six-valve, three-cylinder petrol engine. Its power output is 60 bhp at 5,000 to 6,000 rpm, and the peak torque figure is 70 lb ft at 3,000 to 4,300 rpm.
The Citigo will do a ‘ton’ – just. Its top speed is spot on 100 mph. The 0-62 acceleration is a rather leisurely 14.4 seconds, but it actually feels livelier than that. It has a kerb weight of only 865 kg and the gross vehicle weight is just under 1.3 tons, so it only takes a tiny three-cylinder engine to haul it around quite effectively.
This Greentech version has environmental features including brake energy recuperation, low rolling resistance tyres and automatic engine start/stop which combine to lower fuel consumption by around nine per cent, resulting in an mpg figure in the upper-60s and CO2 output of 96 g/km. This means that the car qualifies for a free annual tax disc and congestion charge exemption.