Paris Auto Show – 2005 Skoda Fabia Share Comments As of August 2004 Škoda Auto will start to sell Fabia for the model year 2005. The Škoda Fabia has undergone many important innovations with the main aim of diversifying and enlivening the model range. This will make the innovative small Škoda even more attractive to customers. Changes are apparent throughout the whole car. The exterior of the car is especially eye-catching because of the new front bumper and the newly-designed rear light cluster. The range of equipment has also been modified and the Comfort middle equipment specification has been renamed Ambiente. The design of the interiors has also been revamped and they include new colours, new patterns and new seat upholstery. Additional modifications such as the new steering wheel and the newly designed surface of the instrument panel, the front part of which below the windscreen now has a different design, underline the cosiness of the interior. Description of the Škoda Fabia model range The Škoda Fabia model range is the only one in its category to offer three body specifications. The range consists of the five-door hatchback, the spacious, elegant estate and the four-door saloon. All three models have many common elements and they can be distinguished mainly by the shape and design of the body. Like the chassis and the majority of the interior, the power units – engines and transmissions – are virtually the same for all models. The compact Škoda Fabia hatchback with a length of 3,970 mm gives the customer above-average interior space. The 260 l luggage compartment can be increased up to 1,016 l with the rear seats folded down (split rear seats 1/3 to 2/3 are available with the Ambiente and higher specifications). The Škoda Fabia estate has an elegant extended rear section, of which the overall length is 4,232 mm. The estate’s luggage compartment holds 426 l and has a roller cover that includes a compartment for an umbrella or other small items. The luggage compartment can be increased to 1,225 l by folding the rear seats (split rear seats are available with the Ambiente and higher specifications). The Škoda Fabia saloon is 4,232 mm long and has a luggage compartment of 438 l. In addition the car is equipped with split rear seats so that the luggage compartment can be increased to 789 l. The RS sports model is a hatchback derivative. The most significant feature of the exterior design is the new robust front bumper with an integrated spoiler. The bumper protrudes forward and its design blends perfectly with the style of WRC cars – the rear section of the car clearly demonstrates its sporty character. This is emphasised by the spoiler over the rear window, the rear bumper with its integrated spoiler and the stainless steel tailpipe. The large, sixteen-inch light alloy wheels add to the sporty dynamics of the car. The interior design lives up to the external appearance of the car, incorporating features that clearly demonstrate the character of the Fabia RS. Above all they include sports seats with original Cross-Tuck upholstery that provide more than adequate luxury and comfort and also the necessary support during fast driving. The sporty character of the car is emphasised not only by the three-spoke steering wheel wrapped in leather, as are the gear lever handle and the hand brake handle, but also by many other items such as the silver data display on the instrument panel, the sports pedals with stainless steel covers, the door-sills with the RS symbol and mats also decorated with the RS symbol. Design of the car The Škoda Fabia has a timeless design and still produces an elegant, charming and attractive impression even after several years of production. The car has a progressive appearance without fashionable excesses in its design. In addition the Fabia is easy to identify because of its typical features and it can be easily distinguished from cars of other makes. The Fabia range of cars has a sophisticated and compact design where individual design items blend in a logical manner and create a compact, harmonious unit. Any significant changes could easily disturb this harmony and balance and therefore an approach of only partial changes to the exterior, retaining the character of the car, was implemented during the facelift of the Škoda Fabia. The most significant modification of the exterior of the updated Škoda Fabia is the new front bumper. Compared to the current model the new Škoda Fabia has rounder and finer shapes but the overall concept gives the car a much more dynamic expression. The current horizontal air opening in the bottom part of the bumper has been divided into three parts by coloured diagonal partitions. The side openings now contain new circular fog lamps. Another detail is the black protective strips, which are slightly higher than normal. This significantly increases the overall balance of the front section because it reduces the impression of robustness and visually reduces the height of the car.A clearer design of the front section is evident from the modified radiator grille. The fins of the radiator grille are slightly inclined, producing a smoother, finer expression. The appearance of the rear section has been changed by the new rear light cluster glass. Its design makes the car optically wider and helps to produce the impression of a solid, spacious, safe car. The car’s appearance is also enlightened by the large new wheel trims and the new alloy wheels. Interior Great attention has been paid to the interior when updating the Fabia for the 2005 model year. The instrument panel has been successfully modified. The front part of the surface below the windscreen has been newly designed. This modification makes the instrument panel visually lighter; it now looks airier and stresses the fresh atmosphere of the interior. The new ergonomically-designed steering wheel contributes significantly to this. The instruments have also been modified, specifically the design of their scales has been changed to match the current Škoda models. Another important modification is the new colour design of the interior of individual equipment specifications with the option of choosing the interior colour for the Classic, the Ambiente and the Elegance. The upper part of the instrument panel on all specifications is in Onyx Black which prevents reflections in the windscreen. The elegant, all-black interior is now available starting from the Classic specification. All upholstery fabrics for the modified Škoda Fabia (except the Junior and RS versions) are completely new. In addition, leather upholstery is now available for the Elegance as an option. Equipment The Škoda Fabia still has five equipment specifications: the basic Junior, the Classic, the Ambiente and the Elegance; whilst the special RS sports version crowns the range. The structure and scope of the equipment of individual specifications remains the same; only partial modifications have been made to the range. The standard equipment includes a driver airbag, front seat belts with pretensioners, an immobiliser, and progressive electro-hydraulic power steering (available as an option on cars with the 1.2/40 kW engine). The surface of the instrument panel is soft and touch-friendly because it uses material produced by Slush technology. The heating and ventilation system has a pollen filter and interior air re-circulation. Higher equipment specifications feature such items as alloy wheels, a front passenger airbag, automatic air conditioning, height-adjustable driver seat, central locking, an on-board computer and electric front windows. The standard equipment of the RS model matches the character of the car and provides a high degree of safety and more than adequate comfort for passengers. Standard equipment includes driver and front passenger airbags, the ABS and ASR systems, a tilt and rake-adjustable steering wheel, height-adjustable driver seat, remote-control central locking with a folding key, an on-board computer, electronically-controlled front windows and radio preparation with eight speakers. Safety Cars in the Fabia range comply with the safety legislation requirements valid in global markets where they are exported and even with those that will become valid in the future. The Škoda Fabia hatchback has successfully passed the requirements of the extremely demanding consumer test Euro NCAP and achieved one of the best results in its category – four stars. If the airbag is deployed during a crash an automatic sequence of strictly defined operations will be activated; to name a few, the warning lights and the interior illumination are turned on, the central locking system is unlocked and the fuel supply pipe is immediately switched off. Standard security on the Škoda Fabia comes with an immobiliser and a VIN code label on the windscreen frame. The immobiliser uses a variety of “floating code” combinations, rejecting any combination that has already been used, thus decreasing the risk of theft. As an option, the car can be fitted with an alarm system with interior monitoring and a backup horn. Power units and transmissions The Fabia is available with five petrol and three diesel engines. Another alternative is the 1.9 TDI-PD/96 kW engine designed exclusively for the RS model. The petrol engines comply with the most stringent EU IV emission standard, which will come into force in EU countries from 2005. Depending on the conditions in individual countries some petrol engines are required to comply with EU II. The diesel engines comply with EU III. The most important change under the bonnet for 2005 is the increased functions of the EOBD system for petrol engines, which now monitors the distance driven with the emission warning light on. This allows the service shop staff to say how long harmful substances were released into the air. Petrol engines complying with the requirements of the most stringent EU IV standard have two catalytic converters and two lambda sensors. The new three-cylinder engines producing 40 kW and 47 kW use only one catalytic converter because of their advanced technology. The following petrol engines are available with ?koda Fabia cars: – 1.2 HTP/40 kW (54 bhp) – 1.2 12V HTP/47 kW (64 bhp) – 1.4 16V/55 kW (75 bhp) – 1.4 16V/74 kW (100 bhp) – 2.0/85 kW (115 bhp). A range of three diesel engines with direct injection has been prepared for customers. The engines supercharged with a turbocharger are equipped with a high-pressure system using compound injectors (the Pumpe-Düse System) – the high injection pressure and better combustion of these engines produce not only excellent output and torque but also incredibly low consumption. The following diesel engines are available: – 1.9 SDI/47 kW (64 bhp) – 1.4 TDI PD/55 kW (75 bhp) – 1.9 TDI-PD/74 kW (100 bhp). All engines come with five-gear manual transmission as standard. The 1.4 16V/55 kW engine is also available with four-gear automatic transmission with a hydraulic torque converter and the Fuzzy-logic function, which adapts the gear-changing regime to the actual driving style. The 1.9 TDI-PD/96 kW engine is exclusive to the Fabia RS sports model. Combined with a six-gear transmission it gives the car outstanding dynamic parameters. The engine with a displacement of 1.9 l has a more than ample output of 96 kW (130 bhp) produced at 4,000 rpm. The engine also has great torque, 310 Nm at only 1,900 rpm, giving the car extraordinary flexibility. Owners of the Fabia RS with the 1.9 TDI-PD/96 kW engine will be pleased not only with its power and dynamism but also with its economical operation. Not many sports cars can produce a maximum speed of 206 km/h, accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in 9.5 s with a combined fuel consumption of only 5.4 l/100 km. Chassis Fabia cars are built on a chassis with a wheelbase of 2,462 mm. The wide wheel track (1,435 mm in the front and 1,424 mm in the rear) makes the car “sit” perfectly on the road and its appearance produces the impression of a solid and safe car. The front axle has McPherson struts with wishbone arms and is supported by a torsion stabiliser. In the rear the car has the proven compound-link axle with a torsion cross member. Compared to the hatchback, the estate and saloon versions have reinforced springs and shock absorbers. The dual-circuit braking system is diagonally arranged and equipped with a braking booster. Versions equipped with ABS have electronic distribution of the braking effect according to the load on the front and rear axle (EBV), versions without ABS are equipped with a mechanical braking effect limiter on the rear axle. In addition, all models equipped with ABS are fitted with engine drag control (MSR) which prevents the driving wheels skidding on a slippery road when decelerating or changing to a lower gear. Depending on the engine Fabia can also be supplied with the ASR anti-skid system on the driving wheels and, as an option, with the ESP electronic stability programme. The chassis of the Fabia RS has been specifically modified to give the car a more sporting design and to provide even safer driving characteristics. Compared to standard Fabia cars the chassis of the ?koda Fabia RS has been lowered by 15 mm. All wheels are fitted with efficient disc brakes with internal cooling on the front wheels. The car is equipped with the ABS and ASR electronic systems that safely transfer the driving force from the wheels to the road. As standard all versions are equipped with electrohydraulic power steering (except cars with the 1.2/40 kW engine and cars with 13″ wheels in which it is an option). The electric motor of the pump only works when required to maintain easy control of the car (when turning and parking) so that it does not permanently drain part of the engine output, which helps to reduce fuel consumption. The electronic engine control unit regulates the effect of the steering booster according to the speed of the car. The majority of the electronic systems in the car (engine control unit, accelerator pedal control, engine sensors, steering booster and automatic transmission control, ABS, MSR, deployment of airbags, air-conditioning, central locking, indicators on the instrument panel, etc.) are interconnected via the CAN-Bus interface. It is used to quickly and reliably exchange digitalised information between the electronic control units. This system optimises the use of electronic elements and equipment in the car according to the driving regime and thus significantly increases passenger comfort. For more discussion on this story, click on the link to our discussion forums to the left. For more photos of the car in this story, click on the link to our gallery at the right.