What is it?
It's the hottest version of the plucky Skoda Fabia supermini, which seems to have taken ages, but is finally here. Two surprises: one, it's fuelled by petrol this time around, and two, there'll be an estate version at some stage.
Why's it here?
Because Skoda's last Fabia vRS was something of a hot hatch legend, back when 'diesel' and 'hot hatch' were pretty much mutually exclusive. Diesel still is a dirty word to some though, so Skoda's gone old school and made this vRS petrol. It gets a 178bhp 1.4-litre TSI twin-charged unit, as found in the new Polo GTI, no less.
Show stopper or floor filler?
Amid nine VW Group launches it wasn't the most noteworthy, but it is a car that most of us are likely to get quite excited about in an 'everyday' sort of way. It's good looking, practical, will do 44mpg, hit 62mph in 7.3 seconds, and start at just £16,000. Winner. Expect it in the summer.
Mark Nichol - 2 Mar 2010