Used Skoda Fabia Hatchback 2000 - 2007 review

Category: Small car

The Fabia is a brilliant, grown-up supermini that's unfairly overlooked by badge snobs

Skoda Fabia Hatchback (00 - 07)
  • Skoda Fabia Hatchback (00 - 07)
  • Skoda Fabia Hatchback (00 - 07)
Used Skoda Fabia Hatchback 2000 - 2007 review
Star rating

What's the used Skoda Fabia hatchback like?

Some buyers still won't touch a Skoda because of a perceived downmarket reputation. It's the buyer's loss, though, because Skoda no longer builds cheaply made, ramshackle cars, and hasn't for some time.

Even the earliest Fabias were constructed after the company's rebirth as part of the VW Group empire, so anyone who buys one is getting a quality product. Mechanically, it's pretty much the same as the Volkswagen Polo of the same era, and yet the Fabia is more reliable, just as classy and better to drive.


The Fabia is a brilliant, grown-up supermini that's unfairly overlooked by badge snobs

  • Lots of car for the cash
  • Good to drive, solidly built
  • Not as exciting to drive as a Fiesta
  • Cabin is a bit drab

The Fabia gives an outstanding balance between ride and handling. It may not be as much fun as a Ford Fiesta, but it's agile enough. The ride is great and refinement is excellent, making the Fabia very relaxing. Interior space is impressive, with enough room for five adults, while the cabin is classy and solid, if a bit drab. Build quality is top-drawer and, best of all, the car's cheap to buy and run.

Ownership cost

What used Skoda Fabia hatchback will I get for my budget?

How much does it cost to run a Skoda Fabia hatchback?

The Fabia was great value for money when it was new and, because Skodas don't hold their value as well as other Volkswagen Group cars, it makes an even better prospect as a used buy than some of its sister cars.

The majority of the engines give very strong fuel economy, so running costs won't be huge, either, especially as insurance costs are a big plus point. Our favourite 1.2 petrol engine sits in group 1, so premiums are rock bottom. Most of the range varies between groups 2 and 6, while the vRS will cost the most to cover, but even that's only in group 9.

Servicing costs will be similar to what you'll pay for a VW Polo or a Seat Ibiza, but the Skoda will be a tiny bit cheaper to maintain. You may pay a bit more than Corsa or Fiesta owners, though.

Our recommendations

Which used Skoda Fabia hatchback should I buy?

There are plenty of versions to choose from, but we'd avoid the gutless 1.0-litre petrol. Two 1.2 petrols are available, one with 54bhp and one with 64bhp, while there are also two 1.4s, with either 75 or 100bhp. There's also a 2.0 petrol. All are good all-rounders, but the less powerful 1.2 is our favourite. It's far from quick, but performance is just about adequate, while it's cheap to buy and you get 47.1mpg.

There are plenty of diesels, too. The 1.4 TDI comes with outputs of either 70, 75 or 80bhp, and all give good economy and reasonable performance. We'd leave the sluggish 1.9 SDI alone, but the 100bhp 1.9 TDI is much better. It's pricier, but it returns 56.5mpg. The range-topping vRS uses a 130bhp diesel, so even the hot version gives 55.4mpg.

Choose basic Classic trim. It'll give you air-con and a CD player, while keeping things as cheap as possible.


What alternatives should I consider to a used Skoda Fabia hatchback?