First drive: Skoda Fabia Greenline

* We test low-CO2 Fabia * CO2 emissions of 109g/km; 68.9mpg * Saloon costs 11,495, estate 12,145...

04 June 2008

First drive: Skoda Fabia Greenline

Skoda says the Fabia is 'full of lovely stuff' - with the new Greenline version, the company is trying to make the stuff that comes out of it a bit lovelier, too.

The Greenline is Skoda's answer to the VW Polo BlueMotion and Seat Ibiza Ecomotive. It uses the same 79bhp 1.4-litre diesel engine, and has undergone similar tweaks to the gearing and aerodynamics, all in an effort to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and increase fuel economy.

Unfortunately, the Fabia's figures aren't as impressive. A CO2 output of 109g/km can't match the 99g/km for the Polo and Ibiza.

It isn't as frugal, either, returning an average of 68.9mpg to its rivals' 74.3mpg. Suddenly, the Fabia starts to look a bit pointless.

It suffers from the same drawback that blights the others, too - the engine is rougher than a teenager's complexion.

There's a loud, agricultural clatter from under the bonnet whatever your speed, and you feel engine vibrations pulsing through the steering wheel, gearlever and pedals.

In its favour, the Skoda is the cheapest of the trio at 11,495 in hatchback form. The Seat costs 135 more and the VW costs another 1095 on top of that.

You can also have the Fabia as the estate model we have here, which gives it a slightly different appeal. You'll pay 12,145 for that version. Both versions are on sale now.