2011 Skoda Yeti - Click above for high resolution picture gallery

Car tested: 2011 Skoda Yeti Elegance

Price OTR Mumbai: 19,42,225/-

Skoda first showcased the Yeti at the 2009 Geneva motor show and it was only at the 2010 Auto Expo, the “Snowman” stepped onto Indian soil. Designed by top Volkswagen brass, the Yeti is the first SUV from Skoda and packs a strong 4 x 4 punch into a promising compact hatchback design. Skoda’s ad campaigns with the Nat Geo channel have already established the Yeti as an all terrain vehicle. We take the Skoda Yeti for a spin and find out is it really has the right of way.

Skoda Yeti Front

Exteriors – Many people have criticized the size of this SUV. In layman terms, a SUV is supposed to be large and flashy, well, the fact is that the Yeti appears much smaller in photographs than it really is. One has to appreciate the Yeti in person to know the actual size of this car. Skoda has packed the Yeti in about 4.2 metres (length) and this makes it a practical city car with ease of parking.

The front is what the steals the show with strategically placed large fog lamps on the front bumper along with the new signature Skoda grille. The side profile of the Skoda Yeti flaunts 7-spoke alloy wheels with blackened out A, C and D pillars. Roof rails define the top of the car and its evident that Skoda has improvised on the tall boy design used by many manufacturers.

The Yeti’s butt is rather flat with black bumper as standard. Notice the tray under the bumper which prevents the underbody from damage.

Interiors – Buckle up and one can’t miss the interior quality which deserves a special mention with fit and finish being one of the best. A touch of wood on the dash amplifies the appeal of the Yeti further.

Seats are comfortable and provide adequate thigh support and the tall boy designs makes sure there is abundant headroom too. Rear seat comfort in the Skoda Yeti is just as good as the front and the seats can be folded, either separately or together to make van like room at the rear. Both front seats offer adjustable lumbar support. Rear legroom is just about enough.

The Yeti comes equipped with a touch screen audio head unit which supports CD/MP3 and Aux and also doubles up as the rear parking system display. Sound quality is well above average and can be tweaked to quite an extent. Audio controls on the steering give way to a comfortable driving experience. Under the Audio system lie the Ac controls. Similar to what is seen in luxury cars, the Skoda Yeti has dual front Ac with automatic climate control and a vent at the rear, which chills the cabin quickly and efficiently.

The Skoda Yeti has a lot of smart features which contribute to the overall driving experience. For instance, the inside rear view mirror has a small button, which once pressed will activate anti glare function on the inside as well as the drivers side ORVM for glare free driving at night. The ORVM’s have a defogging option too.

Instrument cluster shows all the basic criteria including real time mileage, distance to empty, tip meter etc.

Boot space is a bit restricted as the freely available area lies between the two wheel arches while the sides have been utilized well for for various extras such as hooks and nets, not to mention a 12 V charging point at the back. Fold up the rear seats and you get almost Van like area at the back. Parcel tray is large and a bit heavy too, but can be put to good use.

On the Move – Turn the ignition and the Yeti will remind you to depress the clutch before the engine comes to life. Slot into first and you will be amazed with the engine refinement. Floor the pedal and the Yeti responds, no lack of power surely. In jam packed Mumbai traffic, it was rare to get into the sixth gear but on the highway the sixth gear came in handy.The car is well insulated from outside noise. Built quality is superb, with no rattles whatsoever and the doors shut with a loud reassuring thud.

Ride, Handling and Braking – The Yeti proves itself as a car for most situations. Even though its an off roader, the ride on tarmac is reasonably comfortable thanks to its all wheel independent suspension and with 180 mm of ground clearance, there wont be too many ground kissing moments. However at slow speeds the ride tends to get to the harsher side. The car also tends to oversteer on hard cornering but the electronic stability program ensures you stay on the road. Under normal circumstances, about 90 percent power is supplied to the front wheels but this can vary depending on the conditions and the same power may be supplied to the rear tyres if the need arises. Steering feedback is good and it it feels a bit heavy, it fares well in both city and highway conditions.

The 215/60/16 Goodyear tyres grip well and braking is spot on with all four disc brakes.

Skoda had provided the spare wheel in the form of a space saver mounted on a steel wheel (195/60/16), just 20 mm short of a full blown tyre. ABS, EBD and ESP are standard. The Yeti is also fitted with the Hill Descent assist which prevents the car from rolling down a hill too fast. Few other features on the Elegance model include Off-road ABS, ASR & TCS and Electronic Differential Lock

Performance – The Yeti is powered by a 2-litre, 4 cylinder, common rail diesel engine which churns out 140 bhp of power @ 4200 RPM and a torque of 320 NM @ 1750 – 2250 RPM. There is just a hint of turbo lag initially after which this engine delivers power on demand.

The Yeti stopped the clocks in exactly 11 seconds on a 0 – 100 dash. This robust TDI engine is mated to a 6 speed manual gearbox which is slick to shift. The worst mileage we got was 9.5 kmpl and we expect the Yeti to deliver an overall mileage of 14 – 15 kmpl.

Conclusion – The Yeti is a complete package but may not appeal to the SUV lover due to its smaller size. It a superb offroader and at the same exudes the comforts of a sedan. Loaded with safety features such as 6 airbags, ABS, EBD, ESP, active head restaraints etc, the Yeti does not compromise with safety and at the same time delivers a comfortable and power packed driving experience. Price may be one factor but if you want a car for regular city driving and occasional off roading, the Yeti might just be the right car for you.

Whats Cool

* Built quality
* Safety
* Handling
* Serious off roading capability
* Performance

Whats Not So Cool

* Small Size
* Boxy rear
* Skoda Service

Skoda Yeti Specifications : –

* Engine: 2 ltr, 16V, 4 Cylinder TDI
* Power: 140 BHP @ 4200 rpm
* Torque: 320Nm @ 1750 – 2250 rpm
* Transmission: 6 speed manual
* Top Speed: 200 kmph
* 0-100kmph: 11.00 seconds
* Fuel Consumption: 14-15 kmpl
* Fuel Type: Diesel
* Suspension: All wheel independent suspension with limited slip differential, McPherson suspension with lower triangular links and torsion stabilizer (front), Multi-element axle, with one longitudinal and three transverse links, with torsion stabilizer (rear)
* Tires: 215/60/16 Tubeless Radials
* Brakes: All 4 Disc Brakes
* Safety: ABS, EBD, 6 airbags, ESP, Immobilizer With Rolling Code, Active head restraints etc

Skoda Yeti Dimensions : –

* Overall length x width x height: 4223mm X 1793mm X 1691mm
* Wheelbase: 2,578 mm
* Ground clearance: 180mm
* Boot Volume: 415 liters, 1650 liters (with rear seats removed)
* Fuel Tank Capacity: 60 litres
* Kerb Weight: 1543kgs