It turned heads when it was launched at the 2009 Geneva motor show as the brand’s first SUV and it has dramatically moved on since then and now includes or offers the most advanced technical features you could expect, even from a luxury car maker.
For 2014 there are two versions, a front wheel drive model and 4WD Outdoor in the 12-strong line up and four trim levels from about £16,600 to £27,050 with petrol or diesel engines and manual or semi-manual gearboxes.
Our first drive impressions on 8 February of the anticipated best selling SE 2.0 TDI left us wanting more so we turned to the financially more attractive 105 1.6 TDI for this test.
The familiar VW Group 1.6 litre engine has been tuned for lean burn and low emissions, and the Greenline series backs this up with stop&start technology, low rolling resistance tyres, kinetic energy recovery and even a slightly lower set body to smooth airflow. All combine to push the emissions below 120gkm and without even trying we managed to attain 58.4mpg, which is remarkably close to the claimed combined consumption in test-cell calm conditions.
What’s more, the Yeti SE Greenline II is fairly lively and pulls well once underway and with careful gear selection it is brisk overtaking and can be eased along main roads and motorways without any effort and little fuel consumption. It’s quiet and composed even when pushed hard and all noise levels were low.
The powertrain is a delightful match with a long travel but light and progressive clutch, precise and effortless gearchange and well weighted steering offering a good turning circle. Brakes were nicely balanced and the parking brake securely held it on a steep test slope.
Secondary controls are large and well placed for ease of use, the usual stalks are backed up by console and panel mounted switches and the straightforward instruments are clear, and also include multi-function displays for journey information.
Climate control is standard and works well throughout the big cabin and the oddments space is what you would want in a family car. The fitting of Varioflex seating offers truly useful options with the rear trio of seats moving forwards, backwards and you can even remove the central one to create a very roomy four-seat configuration.
The carrying capacity rises from 322 to 1665 litres and the rear is simple to access and fill and this roominess combined with the clever Varioflex seating is a big attraction to families, who can build on the versatility with a thoughtful range of options including bike racking for the sportier souls.
Visibility is excellent with big windows, low waistline, very effective wipers and bright, wide-beamed long-range lights.
Its up to you whether or not you stick with 2WD or choose the 4WD powertrain but for the majority of drivers the front wheel drive versions are perfectly acceptable and you loose nothing in terms of roominess and versatility but save some money.
With the saving you might want to splash out on some useful features such as a sat-nav, park assist or rear camera. Who thought Skoda was boring?
|Fast facts: Skoda Yeti Greenline||Price: £19,605|
|Insurance group: 14E||Mechanical: 4cyl 105ps 1598cc, 5sp manual 2WD|
|Max speed: 109mph||0-62mph: 12.1secs|
|CO2 emissions: 119gkm||Fuel consumption: 58.4mpg on test( combined 61.4mpg)|
|BIK rating: VED band C/ 19%||Warranty: 3yrs/ 60,000miles|