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The third-generation Fabia hatch was aimed toward retail customers, and so it has been left to the more practical estate to tempt fleets.
Skoda is hoping to increase fleet from 40% to 50% of the brand's volume and the Fabia estate will play a part in that.
The new wagon offers fleets a high-value proposition, with low running costs and a big boot. The closest rival is the Ibiza ST from fellow VW Group brand Seat. There are lower medium estate models from Ford, Hyundai and Kia (the Focus, i30 and Ceed), with similar, or even lesser, boot capacities, but as they're from the class above they're over £3000 more.
That leaves the Fabia to trump all other rivals at this price point for practicality and space. The estate boot offers 530 litres of space with the seats up and 1395 litres with the seats down. Despite being on the same platform as the Ibiza ST, the Fabia offers 100 litres more space with the seats up.
While the Fabia isn't as strong as competitors in terms of kerb appeal (something the brand is looking to address with new models for the future), it's a really compelling package when looking at the running costs. At just 94g/km of CO2, the 1.4TDI offers best-in-class running costs at 38.8p per mile, just slightly better than the Ibiza ST's 40.0ppm.
It's an impressive feat due to the fact the Fabia tested here comes with VW Group's slick-shifting dual-clutch automatic gearbox, which would usually bump up CO2 and running costs as a result.
There's an impact on CO2 due to the auto box, with the manual offering emissions as low as 89g/km, and there will be an even more efficient version available in September this year, which pushes CO2 down to 82g/km.
But regardless of what model fleets choose, they're all in the 16% BIK bracket, which covers 76-94g/km. The Fabia loses points due to the lack of refinement on the diesel, though, which is quite clattery, particularly on start up.
Skoda Fabia estate SE 1.4TDI DSG
Model price range £9945-£18,405
Residual value 30.5%
Service, maintenance and repair £1344
Vehicle Excise Duty £0
National Insurance £1230
Cost per mile 38.8p
Fuel consumption 78.5mpg
CO2 (BIK band) 94g/km (16%)
BIK 20/40% per month £47/£93
Boot space (min/max) 530/1395 litres
Engine size/power 1422cc/105hp
Trumps rivals on costs and practicality
Good value and DSG gearbox is smooth
Styling isn't the best and diesel lacks refinement