Used test: Kia Rio vs Skoda Fabia
If you're looking for a great small car the Rio and the Fabia are two of our favourites, but which one makes the most sense bought used? Read on to find out...
Wow, this is a genuinely close contest, and really hard-fought. The Rio runs the Fabia right down to the wire. That cracking engine makes it surprisingly nippy, and it’s genuinely roomy for four adults (even for five at a push), and it’s handsomely equipped and nicely finished too. If only it were a bit more comfortable, and a little bit nicer to drive, it might have won. However, if you found a good one near you and you felt inclined to buy it and benefit from the remainder of its long warranty we wouldn’t blame you.
Once again, though, it’s the Fabia’s package of affordability, decent practicality and fine driving manners that keeps it at the top of the pile. Its steering is nicer, for one, it’s more comfortable and its low-speed and around-town ride is better, too, and as that’s where these two cars will spend the majority of their time that is obviously quite an important factor. The Fabia also has the better infotainment system and, bought as here at two-years-old, it’s cheaper by a fairly considerable amount. So victory to the Fabia then but, as Wellington said of Waterloo, it was the nearest-run thing you ever saw.
For: Sweeter ride and handling; better infotainment; cheaper to buy
Against: Less rear seat space; slower; not as well equipped
Verdict: Great to drive, sit in and live with. Still one of our favourite small cars
4 out of 5 stars
Read the full used Skoda Fabia review
2nd – Kia Rio
For: Stronger performance; more space in the back
Against: Jittery town ride; too much road noise; infotainment fiddly
Verdict: Comes up short in a few areas, but still very recommendable
4 out of 5 stars
Read the full used Kia Rio review
Specifications: Skoda Fabia 1.2 TSI 90 SE
Engine size 1.2-litre petrol
List price when new £14,005
Price today £9000
Torque 118lb ft
Top speed 113mph
Fuel economy 60.1mpg (Official average)
CO2 emissions 117g/km
Specifications: Kia Rio 1.0 T GDi 99 ‘2’
Engine size 1.0-litre petrol
List price when new £14,545
Price today £11,000
Torque 126lb ft
Top speed 115mph
Fuel economy 62.8mpg (Official average)
CO2 emissions 102g/km
Price today is based on a 2017 model with average mileage and full service history, correct at time of writing
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