Turn the clock back three years, and the previous generation Yeti was a long-term fixture in the Diesel Car garage, with me as its lucky guardian. I say lucky, because I loved that car, and was so taken with its honest brilliance that I came close to buying one when the time came for us to part. There is something about the Skoda Yeti that seems to unerringly endear it to anyone who drives one.
The first generation Yeti we ran was a 2.0-litre TDI CR 4×4 140 in a metallic shade of bronze. The new generation equivalent of that car has a list price of £24,525. This time we have gone for the green edition, a Yeti Outdoor GreenLine II, with front-wheel-drive, a 1.6 litre TDI 103bhp engine, and almost no optional extras. This car’s list price is £21,365 and the only extras it has are metallic paint at £525 and a set of floor mats at £65, bringing the total to £21,955. The car is in a smart shade of Brilliant Silver Metallic that suits its crisp, no-nonsense lines.
Our new Yeti arrived in early April with just 570 miles on the clock and that wonderful new car smell permeating its lofty cabin. The only option we might miss is satellite navigation, but my trusty portable TomTom unit will fill that gap. Otherwise it is a well-equipped car with a long list of standard kit that includes dual-zone air conditioning, heated front seats, cruise control, all-round electric windows, electrically adjustable and foldable door mirrors that are also heated, bi-Xenon headlights and front fog lights with cornering functionality and Bluetooth mobile phone connectivity. The audio system is a ‘Bolero’ radio with six-CD autochanger that is MP3 compatible, and there is also a 3.5 milimetre auxiliary socket. The list goes on. The cabin has leather for the seats, multi-function steering wheel, handbrake and gear lever, and both the driver and front passenger seat are height adjustable, and there’s a handy storage box under the front passenger seat. Tucked in under the driver’s seat is a useful little slot especially designed to house a high-visibility safety jacket, that modern ‘elf ‘n safety’ requirement for any savvy driver.
Safety is well catered for. As well as front, side and curtain airbags, there is also one for the driver’s knees. Electronic hill hold control ensures that you can pull away on a hill without risk of rolling back and without straining the handbrake. There is also a list of eight acronyms telling you that the car is equipped to protect you in slippery and potentially skid-risky conditions, and also when emergency braking might be called for. Rear parking sensors are another item on the inclusive kit list, to facilitate safe and dent-free reversing.
The Yeti has some standard comfort niceties too. Privacy glass is fitted from the B-pillar back, to help shade the cabin in bright summer light. Spotlights are integrated into the door mirrors, and the car also has a standard light assistant package that comprises illumination for getting into the car, paving a way to your front door, driving in tunnels and daytime running lights. There is a rain sensor to trigger the wipers, too. One very handy little provision is a removable LED light sited in the boot, to double up as a luggage compartment light and as a take-away torch. There is also the benefit of a rather handy removable box built into the boot.
Compared with other Yetis, the GreenLine II models have a ride height set 25 millimetres lower for improved aerodynamics, and to help optimise fuel economy. The car rides on 16-inch wheels shod with 205/55 R16 tyres that are designed for better rolling resistance, another fuel-saver. I am generally not that keen on this kind of ‘green’ tyre, as ultimate grip can sometimes be compromised, but I have no complaints so far about the Yeti’s grippiness, both in the wet and the dry. We’ll see whether there is any change in that view during the months ahead.
Meanwhile, it is good to be back in a Yeti, and to relish its airy cabin and phenomenal headroom. It feels like coming home and re-acquainting with an old friend. One with some nice subtle updates that I’ll have pleasure in exploring in future updates.
It is very handy to have a pull-out drawer under the front passenger seat, and so useful for tucking away items you want to keep away from prying eyes, or for storing items that you might need in an emergency.
Satellite navigation is an option on this version of the Yeti, but our car doesnít have it. So itís back to using a portable unit and remembering to remove it from the car when parking to avoid unwelcome attention from thieves.
|Date arrived:||7th April 2014|
|Mileage to date:||996 miles|
|Fuel consumption:||61.4mpg (official combined)
54.1mpg (on test)