New Ford Fiesta & Seat Ibiza vs Skoda Fabia

New version of the UK’s favourite car. New version of one of its toughest rivals. Not-so-new current Small Car of the Year. New class leader?...

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What Car? team
4 Aug 2016 06:00 | Last updated: 14 Jun 2018 00:03

Our verdict

The agonising thing for Ford will be that this new Fiesta has overcome every rival that existed when it was conceived. It’s great to drive, its interior and infotainment have taken big steps (they needed to) and it’s reasonable value for money, especially as a company car. Ford simply couldn’t have foreseen the quantum leap Seat would make at the same time.

Make no mistake, then: the new Ibiza is a brilliant small car that genuinely has no real weakness, being superb to drive and, apart from the MPV-shaped Honda Jazz, easily the most practical car in the class. That it’s cheaper than the Fiesta to privately own or buy on PCP, despite coming with much more kit, is merely a bonus. So, the Fabia slips from first to third in the small car rankings – although that’s hardly shameful in a class of nearly 30 models. We’d go for SE or SE L trim, although even in this top-end Monte Carlo spec the Fabia is keenly priced and a fine all-rounder.

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1st – Seat Ibiza

New Ford Fiesta & Seat Ibiza vs Skoda Fabia

For Grown-up driving manners; great driving position; roomiest in the back; biggest boot; loads of standard kit; best infotainment

Against A bit too much road noise; limited optional safety kit

Must-have options Storage pack (£160)

Rated 5 out of 5

2nd – Ford Fiesta

New Ford Fiesta & Seat Ibiza vs Skoda Fabia

For Wonderful to drive; cheapest company car; lots of advanced safety kit on options list; six-speed ’box

Against Priciest on PCP; most cramped in the back; smallest boot; no rear parking sensors

Must-have options Adjustable boot load floor (£75)

Rated 4 out of 5

3rd – Skoda Fabia

New Ford Fiesta & Seat Ibiza vs Skoda Fabia

For Cheapest to buy and own privately; lowest PCP repayments; decent boot

Against Unsettled low-speed ride; suspension noise; worst equipped

Must-have options Auto lights and wipers (£200); third rear headrest (£50)

Rated 4 out of 5

Specifications: Ford Fiesta 1.0 Ecoboost 100 Titanium 5dr

Engine size 1.0-litre engine

List price £16,795

Target Price £16,297

Power 99bhp @ 6000rpm

Torque 125Ib ft @ 1400-4000rpm

0-60mph 10.0sec

Top speed 113mph

Gov't fuel economy 65.7mpg

CO2 emissions 97g/km

Specifications: Seat Ibiza 1.0 TSI 95 Xcellence

Engine size 1.0-litre petrol

List price £17,310

Target Price £15,810

Power 94bhp @ 5000-5500rpm

Torque 129Ib ft @ 1500-3500rpm

0-60mph 9.9sec

Top speed 113mph

Gov't fuel economy 60.1mpg

CO2 emissions 106g/km

Specifications: Skoda Fabia 1.0 TSI 95 Monte Carlo

Engine size 1.0-litre petrol

List price £16,100

Target Price £14,913

Power 94bhp @ 5000-5500pm

Torque 118Ib ft @ 1500-3500rpm

0-60mph 10.1sec

Top speed 115mph

Gov't fuel economy 64.2mpg

CO2 emissions 101g/km

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