I like the new stubby face of the Fabia but I’m not so sure about the proportions of the estate.
The Skoda Fabia GreenLine Estate is priced at £12,145 and the hatch comes in at £11,495, for which you get 14-inch alloy wheels, powered and heated door mirrors. Plus front fog lights, Halogen headlights, manual air-conditioning, height adjustment for the front passenger seat as well as the driver’s and a rake-and reach-adjustable steering column. This is on top of the Fabia 1 specification which includes electric front windows, larger, 15-inch alloys and a radio/CD/MP3 player with four speaker (the GreenLine has eight speakers).
There is a long list of optional extras and, as well as the ESP, the test car came with rear parking sensors £245, climatronic air-conditioning for £250 and curtain airbags, to go with the standard, front and side airbags, for £205.
There are no less than 14 body colours to choose from although, the Amazon Green is only available with the GreenLine, while the Spirit Yellow is not. Eight of the shades can be combined with a white roof, when the Fabia 2, 3 or Sport is selected but this has a tendency to make the car look a little squat. This was the case with the test car, in Candy White; the shape is accentuated and the height appears reduced.
I like the new stubby face of the Fabia but I’m not so sure about the proportions of the estate. From some angles it looks heavy with perhaps, a tad too much metal. That said, there is no doubt that the new version has solid, dependable and imposing aspects, for its size.
Inside, there is 42mm more headroom than before and the front seats are set 30mm higher for better all-round visibility. The estate version is just 7mm longer than its predecessor but strangely, the boot capacity has increased by 19 per cent to 480-litres with the seats upright and 1,460-litres with them folded.
The interior features a great deal of hard but textured plastics, on the doors as well as the fascia. In most cases the use of these materials, while lightweight, can look cheap but, somehow, Skoda have managed to make the cabin feel inviting. The mix of black and beige helps and it has its practical points – a quick wipe down and it looks as good as new.
Along with many colleagues, I was very impressed by the Skoda Fabia GreenLine estate. There is plenty of room and a comfortable driving position, and good all-round visibility, are just some of the highlights, but best of all is the incredible fuel economy. You’ve heard the saying, ‘less is more’ - in this case it is true.18 September 2008
Skoda Fabia Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Skoda Fabia GreenLine Estate|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||13.2 mph|
|Top Speed||105 mph|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||83.1 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||TBA|
|Warranty||3-Year / 60,000 Mile Warranty|
|Price (when tested on the 18/09/08)||£12,145|