Road Test: Skoda Yeti 2.0 TDI 170 4×4 Elegance
Sector: Small SUV Price: £23,790 Fuel: 47.9mpg CO2: 155g/km
You can have a Skoda Yeti for £15,000, which seems like good value to me. Chunky styling, left-field brand appeal, versatile interior and stand-out looks make the quirky Skoda a refreshing alternative to a mundane Euro-box.
Granted, £15,135 only gets you a 1.2-litre petrol engine under the bonnet driving the front wheels, but even so, it’s a fair amount of car for the money.
Unfortunately, the same value argument can’t be made for the range-topping Yeti on test – all £24,000 worth of it. Maybe it’s because this car is a "crossover" that straddles several sectors, and this has confused the pricing team a little, but this is serious money for a lower-medium-sized car.
Which is not to say the Yeti isn’t appealing in this guise: the 2.0-litre TDI 170bhp diesel engine is punchy and grunty, the four-wheel drive system reassuring, the Elegance trim level luxurious and, its piece de resistance, the versatile interior layout and sliding seats gives myriad possibilities for carting kids/pets/samples/shopping about.
As well as its Matra Rancho-eqsue styling, the clever Varioflex seating system is a big draw in the Yeti. This brings individual sliding, folding and removable seats, so you can have a two-seater with acres of luggage space, five seats and still a decent boot, and anything in between that you might require. Allied to a loftier than normal seating position and the Yeti has the feel of a go-anywhere, do-anything kind of car.
In Elegance trim it is also very well equipped with leather seats, Bluetooth telephony, dual-zone air conditioning and electric windows all round, although for this money I’d have thought satellite navigation and heated seats would be standard too.
The Yeti is a really likeable car, but in top-spec guise it is hard to justify. Venture a little further down the price list and it starts to make more sense again – a 1.4 TSI SE at £18,095 makes a great user-chooser option.