There are cars which drive so nice and let you feel so confident behind the wheel, that you instantly feel fit to go anywhere with it, and this in comfort: this is how we would summarize our test drive experience with the Yeti. Just read on…
Hans Knol ten Bensel
The Yeti is a truly formidable road companion, to say the least. Sliding behind the wheel, one immediately finds a very good seating position, and all the controls are pleasantly at hand.
The leather covered steering wheel and the quality of the used materials give you an up market feeling in this car.
This is further confirmed when we start the engine: the turbocharged 1.2 TSI engine jumps ever so smoothly to life, the change into first is ever so slick, the clutch is silky smooth. Undoubtedly, this is a well engineered machine. Despite its smoothness, the engine is powerful. The 1.2 TSI is “only” 105 HP strong, but the good torque (175 Nm between 1500 and 3500 rpm) and the well chosen gearing gets you very well of the mark. 0 to 100 is reached in 11.8 seconds, and top speed is a good 175 km.
But this is not enough. The engine is also beautifully flexible, vibrationless and silent. This means you can drive smoothly in fifth or sixth gear on city boulevards, with the engine being virtually inaudible, but one feels it will always rise to the occasion, and on a firm blip of the throttle, will pull swiftly out of every situation.
This marvelous engine can also be coupled to the seven speed automatic DSG, and this will treat you to smooth but lightning fast gearchanges.
The 1.5 tonne Yeti can be driven quite frugally, if you don’t rev it too hard and drive with anticipation, it is easy to go below 6 litres even in city traffic! Of course, this version we tested has only front wheel drive, and this is good for the average consumption. The factory gives an average consumption of 6.4 litres, and CO2 emissions are set at 149 g.
The off road qualities of the Yeti are well proven (the car was elected in 1010 in Belgium 4 x 4 of the year) and indeed the car has an excellent balance in rough terrain. But even the Yeti which is not equipped with the multidisc Haldex clutch, is a good performer on unhardened terrain.
What is even better is that this is done in very good comfort. Indeed, the ride of the Yeti is one of the (very) best in its class, and this makes it indeed a great car for long distances. On the comfort side, it is also worthwile to note the good interior space of the car.
2 adults find easily enough room in the back. The rear has three seats, but the narrow middle seat can be taken out and the two outer seats can be moved inward. This means increased shoulder room, nice for these longer trips…
The boot of 405 litres can even be enlarged to 510 litres, and this is about the size of a Passat estate, no less.
It is also worth noting that all Yetis come with air conditioning standard… so is this a “cool” car? You bet!
Hans Knol ten Bensel
Note on the photos: for this report, we used our faithful Nikon D40 with a "standard" fixed focus 35 mm 1.8 lens. The images are well proportioned, and "natural". Exceptions are the last two last images here above, the headlamp and the Yeti emblem. These were taken with the Sony Cyber-Shot W170 with a wide angle setting. Subsequently color saturation was reduced to match the more subdued Nikon setting. We also introduced a graphic representation of the Skoda emblem on the radiator.