THE all-new Skoda Fabia was introduced at the start of 2022 and it is a little cracker that is going to be even more popular than its predecessor.
This is the fourth generation of the hatchback that has sold more than 4.5 million models globally during the past two decades and it has real kerb appeal.
This car looks great, offers much more technology and boasts a range of efficient petrol engines.
The five-door supermini is priced from £15,305, rising to £19,380, and there are well-equipped trim levels called S, SE Comfort, SE L and a special Colour Edition to select from.
The engine choices are a little more limited withfour three-cylinder 1.0-litre units with power outputs of 65ps, 80ps, 95ps and 110ps, along with a four-cylinder 1.5-litre option with 150ps.
There are no hybrid or electric versions at the moment but a sportier model is on the way.
I recently tried the SE L model powered by the three-cylinder turbocharged 1.0-litre TSI engine with 110ps and mated to an excellent 7-speed DSG gearbox.
Priced at £21,335 it was good for the 0-62mph sprint in 9.9 seconds, topped out at 127mph and could deliver a combined 50.4mpg with carbon emissions of 128g/km.
On one longer run I achieved over 60mpg so owners will be able to boast about their car's economy.
The new longer and wider Fabia is now a very good looking car and offers its occupants a good deal more space.
Its more dynamic look is thanks to crisp lines, a sculpted bonnet, hexagonal grille, LED lights, privacy glass and smart alloys.
My car came in smart metallic paint at an extra cost of £1,045 but it would be money well spent.
Inside the cabin is modern and clutter free with comfortable fabric seats and an excellent digital instrument display. Available in the higher trim models the 10.25 inch virtual cockpit display can be personalised from four layouts.
There is also a smaller eight-inch infotainment screen a decent sound system, full smartphone connectivity via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a DAB radio, along with air conditioning that is thankfully controlled from a separate panel.
Visibility is good and the little three-pot engine delivers bags of punch and it is happy and willing at all times and cruises comfortably at motorway speeds. The steering is light and so the Fabia is ideal for town and city work.
The suspension is very good and deals effectively with uneven surfaces, providing a comfortable experience for passengers.
There is much more space inside and four adults can travel in real comfort and it is also very practical with stacks of storage space and a large 380 litre boot that can grow to 1,190 litres with the split rear seats folded.
On the safety front the Fabia boasts the top five-star Euro NCAP rating and got a special mention for child safety.
Systems include front assist with pedestrian and cyclist protection and manoeuvre assist, lane assist, side assist, a driver condition monitor, traffic sign recognition and up to nine airbags. An eCall system is standard across the range and will alert the emergency services in the event of an accident.
This SE L model has all the creature comforts and equipment found in much more expensive models and it is a bargain by today's standards.