Four generations of the popular Škoda Fabia - How she grew up and matured

Updated: Sep 4


The first generation of the Škoda Fabia first appeared to the world in Frankfurt in September 1999 and confirmed what everyone had known since the arrival of the first Octavia three years earlier - a carmaker from a post-communist Eastern European country is now kicking the top league and everyone must consider it a very strong opponent. Now, with the upcoming introduction of its fourth generation, we have the perfect opportunity to recall the history of this popular model across generations.


The favorite for Škoda was a breakthrough in Mladá Boleslav, Felicia progressed, but Fabia meant a real revolution. In the development of the new small car, the carmaker has invested all available resources, the most modern available technology, and all the creative talent of skilled designers and creative designers. Everything fit together perfectly and Fabia became a star. The real master, however, was how successful it was followed by the next two generations.


Fabia I. (1999–2007)

The first Fabia became an icon (and in pistachio paint in particular)
The first Fabia became an icon (and in pistachio paint in particular)

Based on the brand new PQ24 platform (Fabia was the first to use it, Polo did not see it until two years later), a compact, unexpectedly spacious car full of clever ideas was created from the inside, honestly simple but honestly made, exemplary economical and unexpectedly reliable. Who wouldn't like him ?!

The cabin was relatively simple, but honestly crafted
The cabin was relatively simple, but honestly crafted

The equipment already included elements such as ESP with ABS, side airbags, xenon headlights with washers, alloy wheels, radio with eight speakers, navigation, or cruise control. Fabia could compete with the best in her class - and beat most of them outright.

Fabia was available in several variants
Fabia was available in several variants

Body variants: five-door hatchback, station wagon, sedan


Interesting fact: From the very beginning, participation in the WRC was planned, so the resulting car also had to fit up to four meters in length. The original designs also included a sports version of the RS, which was unexpectedly powered by turbodiesel.


Fabia II. (2007-2014)

In terms of design, the second Fabia was no hit, but otherwise it was a successful car
In terms of design, the second Fabia was no hit, but otherwise it was a successful car

If the first Fabia immediately aroused enthusiasm, the second initially brought more embarrassment. The technology has only slightly improved evolutionarily, on the contrary, the design has changed for the worse (to this day, some people did not like it) - the binary Fabia looked round and looked too narrow and high, not even a roof with the possibility of contrast painting.

The cabin jumped a bit forward again in terms of quality and space
The cabin jumped a bit forward again in terms of quality and space

But that doesn't mean it's a bad car. On the same floor plan, it offered an even more spacious interior, attractive features such as head airbags, electronically controlled air conditioning, or a multifunction steering wheel appeared in the equipment, and the comfort was further enhanced by, for example, the armrest. In addition to the sporty RS (this time with petrol, twice-supercharged engine), a more adventurous version of the Scout and the sporty Monte Carlo also appeared for the first time.

The station wagon looked more balanced
The station wagon looked more balanced

Body variants: five-door hatchback, station wagon

Interesting fact: On the foundations of the second Fabia, a large Roomster was created, from the front to the B-pillar, both cars have a completely identical design.


Fabia III. (2014-2021)

The third Fabia looked more valuable and better. And so it really was
The third Fabia looked more valuable and better. And so it really was

The third generation of the Fabia was to repair the damage caused by its predecessor - this time the dynamic, timeless design was taken care of by the talented Jozef Kabaň, technical progress was ensured by the modern MQB modular platform and the interior grew again (helped by 9 cm body extension).

The cabin offered plenty of space, comfort and equipment
The cabin offered plenty of space, comfort and equipment

Safety has been enhanced by modern driving aids (Front Assist emergency braking system, adaptive cruise control, or driver fatigue detection) and the equipment included attractive items such as LED daytime running lights, keyless entry and start (KESSY), a parking camera, or infotainment systems to mirror the MirrorLink mobile phone. The sports version of the RS has definitely disappeared from the menu (only the slightly sportier Monte Carlo remained) and the adventurous version of the Scout was renamed the Scout line (the name Scout is reserved for all-wheel-drive versions).

The station wagon brought a lot of extra space, it was able to satisfy the needs of a Czech family
The station wagon brought a lot of extra space, it was able to satisfy the needs of a Czech family

Body variants: five-door hatchback, station wagon


Interesting fact: the Fabia R5 became the most successful Škoda race car, and the World Championship (WRC2) was dominated for five years in a row (2015–2019). She also won the championship in 2020, this time in the hands of private individuals. She has collected countless local championship cups.

The Fabia R5 clearly flew on the rally tracks!
The Fabia R5 clearly flew on the rally tracks!

Sales

  • 1st generation - 1.79 million

  • 2nd generation - 1.70 million

  • 3rd generation -over 1 million

  • TOTAL - over 4.5 million

Fabia IV. (2021)

The fourth generation is already knocking on the door
The fourth generation is already knocking on the door

The upcoming fourth generation promises a more emotional design, more space (notice in the table how significantly it has grown), more comfortable equipment, the latest elements of digitization and connectivity, and sophisticated driving assistants while keeping clever practicality for everyone (Škoda promises 14 new Simply Clever elements) and a reasonable price tag. And yes, the body variant of the station wagon has already been officially confirmed, although we will wait for it until the beginning of 2023.


Dimensions


S.No Length Width Height Wheelbase Trunk volume

1. gen 3,960 mm 1,646 mm 1,451 mm 2,462 mm 260 l

2. gen 3,992 mm 1,642 mm 1,498 mm 2,465 mm 300 l

3. gen 3,992 mm 1,732 mm 1,467 mm 2,470 mm 330 l

4. gen 4,107 mm 1,780 mm 1,460 mm 2,564 mm 380 l

The new Fabia is said to be much more mature
The new Fabia is said to be much more mature

We have already ridden a prototype of the new Fabia and we were most impressed by her adulthood, how confident she is, and how comfortable she rides. Behind the wheel, it looks like an even bigger car than it really is, which is also due to the chassis settings and its soundproofing. Fabia can be driven comfortably and naturally on the road, without giving the impression that she is more of a driver. Specifically, the Škoda is highly regarded for setting up the chassis, a small car driving like this is not easy to see.

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