Skoda’s fourth-generation Fabia moves onto the Volkswagen MQB A0 platform, which brings fresh styling and new technology
Skoda has announced prices and specifications for the fourth-generation Fabia. The all-new supermini will be available to order from 28th September, with prices starting from £14,905. First deliveries are expected to arrive by the end of the year.
From launch, the new Skoda Fabia will be available in a choice of four trim-levels called S, SE Comfort, Colour Edition and SE L. A Monte Carlo model will also follow in 2022, bringing sportier styling to the supermini. The trim-level has proved popular on the company’s Kamiq and Scala models, accounting for up to 14 percent of sales.
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The cheapest Fabia S comes as standard with LED headlights, manual air conditioning, a 6.5-inch infotainment system and host of driver assistance technology, such as front assist, lane assist and an e-Call system, which contacts the local emergency services in the event of a major accident.
Next up, there’s the Fabia SE Comfort, which is priced from £16,795. Upgrades over the base-model include 15-inch alloy wheels, front fog lamps and rear parking sensors. Inside, there’s also a two-spoke leather multifunction steering wheel, leather trim for the handbrake gaiter and gear knob and height-adjustable front seats with lumbar support.
Colour Edition cars are priced from £17,495. They come as standard with 16-inch alloy wheels, rear privacy glass and contrasting paint for the roof and door mirrors, which can be had in either graphite grey or magic black. Inside, there’s an eight-inch infotainment system and a 10-inch digital gauge cluster, along with an umbrella mounted in the door trim.
The Fabia SE L gets a host of cosmetic and technology improvements over the Colour Edition, such as chrome window surrounds and four electric windows. Inside, there’s also an ambient lighting system, dual-zone air conditioning, a front centre armrest, a removable cup-holder and a 9.2-inch infotainment system with a one-year subscription to Skoda’s connected navigation service. Prices start from £18,980.
New 2022 Skoda Fabia: engines
There are no plans to electrify the Fabia’s MQB A0 platform, so the supermini’s engine range is heavily based on three-cylinder petrol engines. At the lower end of the line-up, there’s a pair of naturally aspirated 1.0-litre units with either 64bhp or 79bhp. Both engines come as standard with a five-speed manual gearbox.
Above those, there’s two turbocharged versions of the same 1.0-litre engine, which offer either 94bhp and 115Nm of torque or 109bhp and 200Nm of torque. The less powerful unit comes with a five-speed manual gearbox only, while the more potent model can be specified with either a six-speed manual or a seven-speed automatic.
Eventually, Skoda will roll-out a turbocharged 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine with 148bhp and 250Nm of torque, which we expect will coincide with the launch of the Fabia Monte Carlo next year. It’ll only be available with a seven-speed automatic gearbox, and will propel the supermini from 0–62mph in 7.9 seconds.
The lack of even mild-hybrid tech means the cleanest motor will be the 94bhp TSI, with official economy of 55.4mpg and CO2 emissions as low as 113g/km. The 148bhp auto will deliver a best of 142g/km, depending on spec and equipment levels.
New 2022 Skoda Fabia: design and interior
The Fabia has long been one of the more conservative choices in the supermini market, offering less driving flair but more space than the stalwart Ford Fiesta. However, Skoda has looked to turn that formula on its head with the fourth-generation model.
It’s the last of the Volkswagen Group superminis to finally move off the ageing PQ26 platform and onto MQB A0 which, as we found in our recent review of the new Fabia, has brought improved driving dynamics, more space and greater access to the powertrains and technology from cars higher up the company’s pecking order.
The Fabia’s design takes its leave from other recent Skodas like the Kamiq, while its overall stance is helped by an increase in length and width over the old model, offsetting a slightly raised roofline. In fact, the new car is a full 111mm longer, taking its bumper-to-bumper figure to 4,108mm. The front gets Skoda’s latest grille and swept-back headlights, plus active cooling vents in the lower bumper that can shut to improve efficiency when cruising.
At the side, there’s a neat crease at the bottom of the doors (designers claim that the triangle motif at the leading edge of this is a nod to the Czech flag) and the window line sweeps up to meet a characteristically thick C-pillar. The rear gets wider lights than before, along with a spoiler integrated into the top of the tailgate and Skoda’s new lettering stretched across the centre of the bootlid.
Skoda is offering a choice of nine body colours, including the new Phoenix Orange shown in these official images. The car will be available with either 14-inch and 15-inch steel wheels on entry-level cars, or alloys ranging from 15 inches to 18 inches on higher-spec models.
The profile also reveals that Skoda has stretched the Fabia’s wheelbase by 94mm, to 2,564mm. That’s longer than the original Octavia’s was back in 1996, but it’s still around 19mm shorter than the latest Renault Clio’s.
The new arrival gains a full 50 litres of boot space, taking its load bay to 380 litres – or roughly the same as many family hatchbacks from the class above. Even so, this figure is 11 litres shy of the Clio’s, although the new Fabia trumps its French rival by offering 1,190 litres when the rear seats are folded down.
Inside, the dashboard gets a fabric coating on SE-spec models upwards, along with a line of body-coloured trim to help break up the grey plastic. The car will have conventional dials and a 3.5-inch information screen as standard, but a 10-inch digital instrument panel will be available as an option.
Skoda chose to retain a 6.5-inch infotainment system with DAB radio for entry-level cars, but most Fabias will come with an eight-inch Bolero touchscreen system that features Bluetooth and wireless Android and Apple smartphone integration.
There’s a 9.2-inch system for the most expensive models that features online-supported navigation and a WiFi hotspot, along with gesture control. The car also has up to five USB-C ports, including one mounted in the rear-view mirror, making it easy to mount a dash cam.
Skoda has also fitted up to 43 of its trademark clever features to the Fabia. Stalwarts such as the parking ticket holder and umbrella in the driver’s door return, but there’s now flexible space in the boot and a storage box for rear passengers that clips into place between the centre console and back seats.
No hybrids of vRS model planned
Skoda believes that customer requirements for equipment, practicality and value for money make it impossible to electrify the all-new Fabia. Currently no VW Group models on the new generation’s MQB A0 feature even mild-hybrid technology – but while Skoda’s powertrain and chassis boss Martin Hrdlicka says the firm is “prepared” to use these assisted engines in the Fabia, the car’s project leader Jiri Dytrych insists the focus remains elsewhere.
“As a brand, Skoda is now concentrating on this segment with the Enyaq iV, a pure-electric car, and also with the plug-in hybrid versions of the Octavia and Superb,” Dytrych said. “But from a customer point of view, we’ve reached the best value for money because of the best fuel consumption, and this means we are not currently planning any solution for electrification on Fabia. We are focused on customer expectations, and the customers are asking us for value for money. We’ve had the discussion many times already, but this is still the decision.”
Dytrych also confirmed that there will not be a hot vRS version of the new Fabia. The first-generation of the car had a hot diesel variant (the successor to that car got a petrol vRS version), but falling demand for high-performance superminis across Europe means it has not been possible to build a case for a faster Mk4.
“With Fabia, the expectation is that the car will start from 14,000 euros and the end of this price list will be 24-26,000 euros before options,” Dytrych said. “So in this segment, to find big potential in these volumes to do a vRS version is really not so easy. We don’t expect such big volume potential, so we don’t find a business case for it.”
However, Skoda is pushing ahead with development of a new R5 rally version of the Fabia, to support its burgeoning motorsport division. Skoda doesn’t compete at the top level of the World Rally Championship but its vehicles have proven popular and successful in the tiers immediately below, often in the hands of customer teams whose purchases have made the Fabia R5 programme a lucrative one for the Czech manufacturer.
Hrdlicka said, “We are celebrating 120 years of motorsport tradition in our company this year, and of course we are planning to keep this tradition. Rallying is the segment where we see Skoda competing because it shows the advantages of our brand.
“So we are working on the new model based on the MQB A0 platform, and we will soon homologate the new generation [for competition]. I think Fabia has been very successful, not only in championships but also in terms of sales; it’s good business we do with our cars.”
What does the new Skoda Fabia have to beat? Check out our run-down of the best superminis on sale here…
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