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Skoda Citigo: Test Drive Review

Date: 06 March 2012   |   Author: Jack Carfrae

Category: City car
P11D Price: £8500 (est.)
Key rival: Fiat 500

Along with the Seat Mii, the Skoda Citigo marks the expansion of VW's Up city car platform to other brands in the VW Group in rebadged form. Small, cheap and cheerful, it offers low running costs courtesy of three models, each with a 1.0-litre petrol engine.

The Citigo is a small car in an old-fashioned sense, in that the peaky engines need to be worked hard to make progress, although keen drivers will find that enjoyable.

The top model, the 75hp Greentech, which sits 15mm lower than the entry-level, non-Greentech 60hp car and is fitted with stop/start, brake energy-recovery and low rolling-resistance tyres, is the one to have. Its extra power renders it slightly more capable, while emissions of 98g/km mean it qualifies for the same tax benefits as the cleanest model, the 60hp Greentech version, which emits 96g/km. The base 60hp car is actually the dirtiest of the lot at a still not unreasonable 105g/km, while economy overall ranges from 62.8mpg to 68.9mpg.

Skoda has completely ruled out the idea of a diesel, claiming that the P11D premium would be too excessive to justify. It also said that the Citigo would not be offered with a performance option akin to the 112hp VW Up GT warm hatch. It did, however, suggest that the current engine range will be subject to economy and emissions improvements in the long run.

Comfortable and surprisingly refined for such a compact car, the Skoda's ride and handling are equally polished, and complement the willing engines. While it isn't incapable on motorways, it isn't exactly at home either, and better suits urban driving. An optional emergency braking system brings the car to a halt if an impending collision is sensed at below 19mph, further enhancing the Citigo's capability around town.

The more practical five-door is expected to account for around 60-70% of sales, when it joins the three-door driven her, and while exact equipment levels have yet to be confirmed, the mid-spec SE model is tipped to be the most popular with fleets. Skoda claims the 251-litre boot and rear shoulder room are the best in the class. We would agree that the boot is reasonable for the size of car, but over long distances rear space is really only suitable for children.

A portable satnav option is available on the top-spec Elegance model and optional lower down the range, but it proved less than effective during BusinessCar's test. Our only other complaint is the parcel shelf, which doesn't raise or drop automatically when the tailgate is opened and closed.

Skoda has yet to release prices for the Citigo, only confirming that the five-door will cost £350 more than the three-door, but it's a safe bet to suggest it will undercut the VW Up's starting P11D price of £7928.

Skoda Citigo 1.0 60hp SE
P11D price£8500 (estimated)
Model price range£7600-£10,500 (est.)
Fuel consumption62.8mpg
CO2 (tax) 105g/km (10%)
Service interval10,000 miles
Insurance (1-50)group 2 (estimated)
Warranty3yrs/60,000mls
Boot space251/951 litres
Engine size/power999cc/60hp
Top speed/0-62mph99mph/14.4secs
On sale June 2012
Score8/10
VerdictAn accomplished and
entertaining small car
with low running costs


Verdict


An accomplished and entertaining small car with low running costs
8/10

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