A range of technical details of the 2022 Skoda Fabia have been released overnight, ahead of the next-generation city car's full debut in the northern spring of 2021 (March to May inclusive).
As part of a prototype drive event with European media, Skoda confirmed the fourth generation of its city hatchback will measure 4107mm long, 1780mm wide and 1460mm tall, with a 2564mm wheelbase – 110mm longer in overall length, 48mm wider, 7mm lower and 94mm longer in wheelbase than the outgoing, third-generation Fabia.
Despite the dimensional increases – which will also enable a larger boot, increasing by 50 litres to a total of 380 litres with the rear seats in place – the Czech brand claims there has been no notable increase in weight, with the new car likely to stick close to its predecessor's circa-1110kg kerb weight.
Making the above possible is the new Fabia's switch to the Volkswagen Group's newer MQB A0 platform, replacing the ageing PQ26 architecture employed by the outgoing Skoda city car since 2014.
The new platform will allow the fitment of the Group's latest interior technologies, with overseas media reporting a 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster will be optional on higher grades, alongside a choice of 6.8- and 9.2-inch infotainment touchscreens.
Nine airbags will be available – including front knee and rear side airbags, though these will be optional in Europe – joining a roster of advanced safety technologies including adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go, lane-keep assist, traffic-sign recognition, and semi-autonomous parking.
Isofix anchor points will also be fitted to all four passenger seats.
While the images released by Skoda still show the new city car clothed in stylised camouflage, design highlights peeking though the wrap include LED headlights and tail-lights, a slimmer front grille reminiscent of the latest Skoda Octavia, and a sporty rear roof spoiler.
Wheel sizes ranging from 14 to 18 inches in diameter will be available, while aero-optimised wheel designs, active cooling slats in the front bumper (which can open or close to improve aerodynamics), the aforementioned rear spoiler and additional underbody panels help lower the drag coefficient from 0.32 to 0.28Cd – said to be best in class.
43 of Skoda's signature 'Simply Clever' practicality touches will feature, including a USB-C port in the rear-view mirror to power a dashcam, a car park swipe card holder, a pocket on the underside of the parcel shelf capable of supporting up to 3.5kg, a removable cupholder, and smartphone storage pockets in the front seatbacks.
Power in European markets will come from one of five engine options, as per the Skoda's Volkswagen Polo and Europe-only Seat Ibiza platform-mates, with all mills said to be compliant with Europe's latest emissions regulations.
Opening the range on the Continent will be a 1.0-litre naturally-aspirated three-cylinder petrol engine, available in 48kW/95Nm or 59kW/95Nm guises, paired to a five-speed manual gearbox.
Most likely of the quintet to reach Australian shores is the pair of 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol three-cylinder engines – which are shared with the related Volkswagen Polo, albeit in different states of tune.
70kW/175Nm and 81kW/200Nm variants will be on offer, the former fitted exclusively with a five-speed manual, and the latter offered with a choice of six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmissions.
Sitting atop the line-up will be a 1.5-litre turbo petrol four-cylinder, sending 110kW and 250Nm to the front wheels (like all Fabia models) through a seven-speed dual-clutch auto as standard.
Diesel power has been axed due to declining sales, while mild-hybrid and full hybrid powertrains are understood to be off the table at launch, in order to reduce costs and maintain the current Fabia's strong value proposition.
The 2022 Skoda Fabia will be unveiled between March and May 2021, with an Australian launch locked in for the next 12 months (by February 2022).
The fan-favourite Fabia wagon is expected to return in new-generation form, though European media reports an unveiling isn't slated until the second half of 2022 – meaning we likely won't see the fourth-generation long-roof in Australia until at least 2023.