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Skoda Fabia Review & Prices

As small hatchbacks go, the Skoda Fabia is a very solid option. But it doesn’t feel as nice as alternatives, or offer an electric version

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RRP £19,720 - £25,620 Avg. Carwow saving £1,933 off RRP
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Cash
£17,934
Monthly
£238*
Used
£12,500
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wowscore
9/10
Reviewed by Carwow after extensive testing of the vehicle.

What's good

  • All-around practicality
  • Very comfortable
  • Smart design

What's not so good

  • No electric or hybrid version
  • Cabin quality isn't the best
  • Not that exciting

Find out more about the Skoda Fabia

Is the Skoda Fabia a good car?

The Skoda Fabia is a small hatchback that shares its mechanical bits with the Volkswagen Polo and Seat Ibiza, but it has always been the most sensible option of the trio. It’s the most practical and usually the cheapest, but has never been the most exciting or upmarket version.

That direction has been continued here on the design front, with the new Fabia featuring Skoda’s recognisable Ned Flanders moustache-like grille, simple but effective creases and smart alloy wheels – nothing to set the heart ablaze, but completely inoffensive.

Inside it’s a similar story. It’s been smartened up compared to its predecessor, but it’s relatively simple. Dashes of colour, a large enough infotainment screen and enough space help this cabin do the job, but you’ll find a fair amount of scratchy plastics.

You’ll be able to get comfortable very quickly though, as the Fabia has plenty of adjustment so you can find the right position. Add to that the comfort seats, which are excellent on longer journeys, and you’ve got an interior that definitely ranks function over form.

Passengers will also be pretty happy as rear space is good. There’s plenty of head and legroom, while there’s easy access to ISOFIX points for child seats.

The Fabia’s boot is also very practical. This class-leading one has 380 litres on hand, which is very impressive for a car of this size. It beats the Volkswagen Polo by around 30 litres, but it smashes the Ford Fiesta by almost 90 litres. That’s extended to 1,190 litres when folding the rear seats down – but you’ll need to buy the optional variable boot floor for a flat space.

It’s a shame there’s no electric version, but the Fabia is a small hatchback worthy of your consideration

Mat Watson
Mat Watson
carwow expert

Under the bonnet, you get the choice of three petrol power options. The entry 1.0-litre naturally-aspirated petrol develops 80hp, while the 95hp and 110hp versions are offered from a 1.0-litre turbo-petrol. The two least powerful engines get a five-speed manual, while the 110hp can be paired to a six-speed manual or a seven-speed automatic transmission.

One thing that’s certainly missed is an electric or hybrid option. In this day and age, small hatchbacks are the perfect type of car for zero-emission power as they’re in and around towns the most, so it’s a shame Skoda has suffered from a bit of oversight here.

Although performance isn’t too important with the Fabia, the 110hp option gets a sub-10 second 0-60mph time – while it can reach a top speed of 125mph.

Where it performs well is in town, as the short wheelbase helps make manoeuvring easy. Its turning circle is under 11 metres, making turning in and out of junctions and tight spaces simple. Although the engines aren’t the most powerful, the turbo options are pretty peppy – making getting in and out of traffic a breeze.

On the motorway, you won’t be complaining too much either. It feels stable and refined, with limited wind and tyre noise getting into the cabin. The suspension also soaks up almost any bumps you come into contact with – making this a great small car to take you long distances. Just don’t expect lots of fun when you reach a twisty back road.

The Skoda Fabia is definitely worth having in your small hatchback considerations and should be in your final selections. It may fall down on some plush materials and excitement, but it won’t disappoint for practicality.

If you want to see how much you could save on a new Skoda Fabia, check our deals page and configure your own model too. You can check out the latest new Skoda deals and used Skoda deals available through carwow. To change your car completely, you can sell your car through carwow, where our trusted dealers will bid on your car to get you the best price.

How much does the Skoda Fabia cost?

The Skoda Fabia has a RRP range of £19,720 to £25,620. However, with Carwow you can save on average £1,933. Prices start at £17,934 if paying cash. Monthly payments start at £238. The price of a used Skoda Fabia on Carwow starts at £12,500.

Our most popular versions of the Skoda Fabia are:

Model version Carwow price from
1.0 MPI 80 SE Comfort 5dr £17,934 Compare offers

The Skoda Fabia offers great value when you compare it to rivals like the Volkswagen Polo and Ford Fiesta.

It’s significantly cheaper than the mechanically identical Volkswagen Polo, although it is possible to see where the money has been saved. Basic versions of the Fabia do without the Polo’s matrix LED headlights that make it look more modern, while inside the Volkswagen comes as standard with a digital dashboard that isn’t fitted to the basic Fabia.

Performance and drive comfort

The Skoda Fabia is easy to drive and very comfortable for a small car, although it isn’t that fun to drive quickly

In town

Small cars can feel a little lumpy over poor road surfaces in town, but the Skoda Fabia just soaks them up, making it very comfortable at slow speeds. You also get decent visibility with large windows and wing mirrors that show you exactly what’s going on.

Okay, so the gearbox is a little notchy but the clutch is light and the accurate steering makes it easy to place the Fabia on the road, and it’s also light. Parking is a doddle for all these reasons and the Fabia comes as standard with rear parking sensors. Want some more help? Then the Park and Go Package adds front sensors and a reversing camera.

On the motorway

The Skoda Fabia is great on the motorway for a small car. It’s got good sound insulation from road noise, there’s not too much wind noise, the seats are comfy and generally it feels like a much bigger car than it is.

If you’ll spend your time driving up and down the country, the optional Travel Assist system could be a wise buy. With it fitted the Fabia can accelerate, brake and steer itself on the motorway and in queues of traffic, which helps take the edge off long drives. And note that not every equipment level even has cruise control as standard.

On a twisty road

In corners, the Skoda’s steering wheel doesn’t communicate how much grip the front tyres have but that doesn’t matter in a family hatchback. It goes where you point it and handles pretty well, you don’t have to deal with loads of body lean and the little Skoda has got plenty of grip.

Space and practicality

The Skoda Fabia has loads of room for a car this size, but you will find some evidence of cost-cutting

All Skoda’s have a decent driving position and the latest Fabia is no different. It has loads of adjustment for the steering wheel and the driver's seat so getting a comfortable driving position isn’t an issue. All models come with front seats that move for height and have lumbar adjustment, but only top-end versions have a front-centre armrest and it isn’t adjustable.

Want to stay nice and toasty in the depths of December? Then hit the button for the Winter Package on Skoda’s configurator – it adds heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, heated windscreen and gives you dual-zone climate control, with an air vent for your rear-seat passengers.

Keeping the interior looking tidy should be easy, too, because there are plenty of smaller storage areas scattered around the cabin. You get a storage space under the front centre armrest with a 12V charging socket, plus there are two cupholders in the centre console and a tray for your phone with two USB-C plugs and optional wireless charging. SE L models get extra interior lighting and have Skoda’s trademark handy feature – an umbrella hidden in the driver’s door for emergencies.

Okay, so the glovebox is an average size but all four door bins are huge, they can hold a large bottle of water, and there's a small lidded cubby below the steering wheel which is perfect for hiding keys and change. You also get vanity mirrors behind the sun visors, although they’re not illuminated like the ones in the Volkswagen Polo.

Space in the back seats

The new Skoda Fabia is surprisingly big for a small car. It’s about 100mm longer between the front and the rear wheels than the car it replaced, and you feel every one of those extra millimetres in the back seat where tall adults get plenty of head and legroom. Shout out also to the panoramic glass roof which is a new option available on all models – it makes the cabin feel nice and light. It is a bit odd that there’s no blind to pull across though.

That extra length in the Skoda’s body also means you get plenty of room behind the front seats to fit a baby’s seat, plus the ISOFIX points are easy to locate and don’t have the removable covers that you’re bound to lose on other cars.

In terms of handy features, the Fabia’s back seat doesn’t come up short. Depending on what model you go for you can have a rear-centre armrest with moulded cup holders, two USB-C plugs (part of the optional Comfort Package) and map pockets on the backs of the front seats that have a smaller pocket for your phone. 

Boot space

The Skoda Fabia’s 380-litre boot is the biggest you’ll find in this size of car – a Polo’s boot is 350 litres, while a Ford Fiesta only offers 311 litres. Skoda has sprinkled the boot with handy features like hooks for keeping your shopping upright and you get a smaller storage space that’s handy for smaller items like a bottle of screenwash.

Want more features? Then the £195 Simply Clever Package adds smaller storage spaces, a pull-out cover that protects the bumper from your dog’s claws, storage nets and a boot floor with a wipe-clean side.

Drop the back seats and you get a maximum capacity of 1,190 litres, although loading isn’t helped by the nasty hump in the floor that you’ll have to lift longer items over when you’re sliding them into place. The optional Comfort Package solves this issue by giving you an adjustable boot floor but it’s a feature that comes as standard in the Volkswagen Polo.

Interior style, infotainment and accessories

The Skoda Fabia has a smart interior, but it's best to go for a mid-range car with a larger infotainment screen and a digital dashboard

The Skoda Fabia has a neat interior with a variety of shapes and surface finishes that keep things looking interesting. Even the hard plastics on the tops of the doors and the dashboard are textured so they look cool, although they don’t feel great.

You can have neat features like copper highlights and a band of fabric trim that stretches from the centre of the dashboard to the passenger side, although we’ll not mention its wonky stitching. On the upside, you get flowing interior door handles which look cool (although they’re not that easy to hold) and a smart two-spoke steering with controls for the car’s infotainment and safety features. They’re proper buttons which are much easier to use than the touch-sensitive controls you get on cars like the Volkswagen Golf.

What’s not so good is the 6.5-inch infotainment screen fitted to the basic model that has a thick plastic frame that makes it look like an antique TV compared to the 8.0- or 9.2-inch displays fitted to the rest of the range.

Even the upgraded touchscreens can be a little unresponsive to use, but it’s best to side-step the inbuilt system and use your smartphone’s menus via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. You’ll also like the Skoda’s proper ventilation-system buttons, which are a lot easier than having to trawl through infotainment menus just to turn up the heater.

From mid-range level and above, all Fabias come with a digital dashboard display which makes the interior feel that bit more modern than in basic versions which have analogue dials with a tiny LCD display squeezed in between them.

MPG, emissions and tax

The Skoda Fabia is available with a choice of four petrol engines – a 1.0-litre with 80, 95 or 110hp and a 1.5-litre with 150hp. The 80 and 95hp models get a five-speed manual gearbox as standard, while the 110hp model has a six-speed manual, with an optional seven-speed twin-clutch automatic. The 150hp car is automatic as standard.

The 80hp Fabia is the cheapest to buy and makes sense if that’s your priority. If it’s not, it’s worth jumping a couple of levels to the 110hp petrol engine, which is just as cheap to run and a lot quicker – getting from 0-62mph in 9.9 seconds versus the 15.5 seconds it takes the 80hp version.

Sure it sends a few vibrations into the cabin at low speed and can get quite raucous under hard acceleration – but it’s quiet at a cruise and gives the Fabia plenty of performance. Road tax costs £190 in year one – £230 if you specify the automatic – and it’ll return more than 50mpg without trying.

The 150hp petrol is the only four-cylinder (the rest have three) so it’s smoother and has hot hatch-worrying performance with 0-62mph taking eight seconds. If you want a true hot hatch experience, though, you’d be better off buying something like a Ford Fiesta ST.

Safety and security

The Skoda Fabia should be one of the safest small cars on sale because it was awarded five stars when it was crash-tested by Euro NCAP in 2021.

Standard safety kit includes automatic emergency brakes, a lane assist that gently nudges the car back into lane if you cross the white lines and E-Call+, which can automatically call an ambulance if you’re involved in an accident. 

Reliablity and problems

Skoda generally scores well in owner satisfaction surveys and you’d expect the new Fabia to be no different, although it’s too new to say for sure. Having said that, there have already been a couple of recalls for the passenger airbag and right-hand rear seat backrest, both can be checked and if needed fixed at the dealer. All Skodas come with a three-year/60,000-mile warranty.

Buy or lease the Skoda Fabia at a price you’ll love
We take the hassle and haggle out of car buying by finding you great deals from local and national dealers
Spring Sale
RRP £19,720 - £25,620 Avg. Carwow saving £1,933 off RRP
Carwow price from
Cash
£17,934
Monthly
£238*
Used
£12,500
Ready to see prices tailored to you?
Compare new offers Compare used deals
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