Used Skoda Fabia Saloon 2000 - 2007 review

Category: Small car

The Fabis is a brilliant, grown-up car that's still unfairly overlooked by badge snobs

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

What's the used Skoda Fabia saloon 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 a Volkswagen Polo of the same era, and yet the Fabia is more reliable, just as classy and better to drive.


The Fabis is a brilliant, grown-up car that's still 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 a very relaxing drive.

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 saloon will I get for my budget?

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

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.

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, with every model sitting in groups 3 or 5.

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 saloon should I buy?

If you go for a Fabia saloon rather than the hatchback, you'll have far fewer models to choose from. Not only did the saloon sell in far lower numbers, only a small portion of the hatch's engine range was available.

There's only one petrol engine, a 1.4. As in the hatch, it came with either 75 or 100bhp, but the less powerful version came with an automatic gearbox, so we'd avoid it and go for the more powerful version instead. Alternatively, you could go for a diesel, but as it's the sluggish 1.9 SDI, we wouldn't bother.

As for trims, it's simple - there's no choice. Each engine came with just one trim, so all you can do is to shop around for a car with some options fitted.


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