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Skoda Fabia RS: The new MINI Cooper nightmare from Skoda

Not too long ago the British MINI One, which is sold in Egypt by the Bavarian Auto Group, lost a comparison test against the much cheaper Japanese Suzuki Swift. Now, the powerful MINI Cooper and MINI Clubman will be facing a new nightmare: The new Czech Skoda Fabia RS and Fabia Combi RS, which
? koda Auto just presented today (02.03.2010) at the 2010 Geneva Motor Show. The Skoda Fabia RS and Fabia Combi RS are the second sports-tuned car after the impressive Octavia RS, which we had recently tested in Germany.

The properties of both Fabia RS versions are indeed impressive: for the first time ever, ? koda Auto is using a double-supercharged four-cylinder petrol engine providing 180hp / 132 kW of power, despite just 1.4 litres of its volume. A sophisticated compressor-and-turbo combination increases the engine power smoothly and harmonically, and the maximum speed of 224 km/h (Combi 226 km/h) and acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in just 7.3 seconds in both versions no doubt guarantee a sporty driving experience. With fuel consumption of 6.4 l/100 km, the Fabia RS offers high power, maximum fuel efficiency, as well as excellent environmental parameters.

Both versions boast an attractively designed front bumper and integrated fog lamps that can optionally be fitted with the Corner system or replaced with daytime running LED lamps. The vehicle's unique position in the Fabia portfolio is underlined by 17" lightweight alloy Gigaro wheels developed specially for the RS, red-painted brake callipers, tinted windows, a new rear bumper with a diffuser and a double exhaust tip. Depending on the colour of the body, the roof, the roof spoiler and wheels for the Fabia RS hatchback will be available in three different shades: black, white and silver.

The vehicle's sports-tuned chassis with ESP, ABS and ASR is designed for powerful and dynamic, yet safe driving performance. To enhance the driving experience, the new XDS system electronically brakes the inside front wheel to increase the torque on the outside front wheel. Towing the car down the bend, the resulting torque gives it impressive agility. A tyre pressure supervision system and an uphill start assistant are part of the standard equipment for greater comfort and safety.

Both the Fabia RS and the Fabia Combi RS are fitted with height-adjustable sports seats with RS logos on the backrests. A three-spoke leather-clad sports steering wheel that can optionally come as a multifunctional version with a gear shift control unit communicating with the seven-speed automatic DSG transmission is height- and longitudinally-adjustable, just like the steering wheels in all the other Fabia versions. The purity of the interior design is underlined by an Onyx-shaded dashboard and stainless steel pedals with an anti-slip surface.

In connection with the new design of the Fabia RS, ? koda has also adapted the design of its rally car, the Fabia Super 2000. Under new FIA regulations for the Super 2000 category, the vehicle has been widened to 1,820 mm. To improve the performance parameters of the Fabia Super 2000 race car, ? koda has also adapted the engine's air intake and exhaust system.

With this new 180-horsepower Fabia RS, Skoda Egypt and the brand Skoda could surely become the new synonym for sporty 'Performance Hatchbacks' thus giving the established competitors such as the MINI Cooper, the BMW 1 series, Golf GTI and the Honda Civic a very hard time.

Although Skoda Egypt / Artoc Auto have not announced any prices yet, I am sure the Fabia RS will have a very competitive price-tag especially after the recent 10 % reductions in the Egyptian customs, which started on 01.01.2010 and which will annually be reduced 10 % until 2019 when it reaches 0% custom duties for automotive vehicles imported from the European Union.


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