Skoda Citigo (2013-2020) Review
The Skoda Citigo is a fun, practical and top-value city car
Strengths & weaknesses
- Roomy interior
- Nimble to drive
- Cheap to buy and run
- Noisy at speed
- No sat-nav option
- All versions are rather slow
Skoda Citigo prices from £6,700 Finance from £121.59 per month
The Skoda Citigo is a fun and stylish city car that fulfils its purpose perfectly. It's small enough to enjoy driving around busy city centres, its engine is lively enough to dash between traffic lights and junctions, and it's economical enough not to have to worry about emissions restrictions either. It's also incredibly cheap, making it a great first car for image-conscious students, while it's reasonably modern so there's no concerns around safety.
Those coming from a larger model will also appreciate the Citigo’s ‘big car’ feel - particularly thanks to the suspension, which is surprisingly comfortable for such a short car. Combine this with supportive seats and responsive engines and this is one of the very best cars of this size to take on a longer journey.
Anyone who has driven either the Volkswagen Up or the Seat Mii will also feel right at home, as all three are built on the same skeleton, with only minor differences in the styling and interior quality.
While it’s more likely to be used as a two-seater, there is room in the back for a six-foot adult behind a similarly sized driver. Further back still, the boot is up there with the class leaders in terms of size - and its deep, square shape makes it practical to stack bags on top of each other.
Driving the Citigo is great fun - much more so than competitors like the Renault Twingo and Kia Picanto - thanks to its agile feel and loads of grip. It’s not fast, though - the 1.2-litre engine in a Peugeot 108 is much more powerful and makes it faster than even the more powerful version of the 1.0-litre Citigo.
At launch the Citigo was one of the most economical cars on sale - but it’s been overtaken by rivals like the Toyota Aygo which offers a completely tax-free range (now only available on second-hand models). By contrast you had to pay £360 extra for a ‘Greentech’ Citigo when new if you wanted to make the most of free road tax.
All Citigos offer strong fuel economy levels with around 50mpg possible. If you want lower fuel costs, keep an eye out for the electric Citigo e iV.
While the petrol-powered version has been discontinued, the Citigo e iV remains on sale. Although not as cheap as the older model, it's still a cheap way to get started with an electric car.
|Warranty||3 years / 60,000 miles|
|Boot size||251 litres|
|Tax||£0 - £145|
Best Skoda Citigo for...
Best for Economy – Skoda Citigo 1.0 MPI 60PS 5-speed Manual GreenTech SE - 3dr
The ‘Greentech’ tweaks on this car include stop-start technology and ‘eco’ tyres which help this Citigo return 68.9mpg and emit just 95g/km of CO2.
Best for Families – Skoda Citigo 1.0 MPI 60PS 5-speed Manual GreenTech SE - 5dr
The two extra doors turn this car from a city runabout into a genuine small family car, especially as both rear seats have Isofix points for child seat mountings.
Best for Performance – Skoda Citigo 1.0 MPI 75PS 5-speed Manual Greentech SE-L - 3dr
The higher-powered 75hp engine here doesn’t add much extra performance, but aids with overtaking and is smoother on the motorway.
One to Avoid – Skoda Citigo 1.0 MPI 60PS 5-speed ASG SE - 3dr
The automatic gearbox in the Citigo is such a terrible unit that it ruins the whole car. It’s slow and jerky at all times, so it’s best avoided.
2012 Model launched alongside nearly-identical Volkswagen up! and Seat Mii.
2014 Citigo ‘Sport’ trim is replaced by Monte Carlo.
2015 ‘Elegance’ trim is renamed SE-L.
2019 Petrol-powered versions of the Citigo are replaced by an electric-only 'e iV' model.
Understanding Skoda Citigo names
Trim level SE-L
The Citigo trims (Trims: S, SE, Monte Carlo, SE-L) tell you the amount of equipment and general level of luxury of the car. SE-L is the top-spec car.
Engine 1.0 MPI 60PS
The Skoda Citigo is available with a 1.0-litre engine. The letter MPI indicate that it's petrol-powered and the final figure is the engine's horsepower (also known as PS).
ASG means an automatic gearbox.
Economy model Greentech
GreenTech is a set of tweaks to the car, made to improve economy and emissions.
Skoda Citigo Engines
1.0 MPI 60PS, 75PS
The Skoda Citigo is available with one engine in two states of tune. It’s a three-cylinder engine with just 59 or 74bhp - but that’s actually plenty in such a light car, and around town the Citigo is fast enough to keep up with traffic. It’s somewhat outclassed on faster roads - the turbocharged 0.9-litre engine in a Renault Twingo makes short work of overtaking compared to the Citigo, but with forward planning overtaking is possible.
The best part about the engine is that it’s non-turbocharged, which means it’s far easier to achieve the stated fuel economy than on a turbocharged engine. Where a Fiat 500 Twinair might only achieve 40mpg compared to a claimed 65mpg, the Citigo will easily return economy in the high 50s.
The engine revs smoothly and around town it’s very quiet - it’s only at speed that the noise begins to intrude. Even then, the offbeat thrum of its three cylinders is more pleasant than most engines.
The 75 horsepower engine is only available on top-spec SE-L cars. It’s slightly more refined on the motorway but for the majority of people the lesser-powered 60hp unit will be all that’s needed.
0 - 60
1.0 MPI 60PS
1.0 MPI 75PS
Skoda Citigo Trims
S, SE, Monte Carlo, SE-L
As with many city cars, the entry-level trim is best avoided on the Skoda Citigo. It’s cheap, but misses out on vitals like electric windows, air-conditioning and remote central locking. These will make it much more difficult to sell so it’s worth spending the extra to move up to SE trim, which adds those missing features along with body-coloured mirrors and door handles.
Monte Carlo is the sporty, youthful trim level which features lowered suspension while adding interior and exterior styling details, along with alloy wheels.
For those after a touch of luxury, SE-L trim adds big-car features like heated seats, electrically heated and adjustable door mirrors, front foglights and a leather steering wheel.
All cars benefit from the addition of the PID system, which is standard on Monte Carlo and above. This adds bluetooth, a trip computer and sat-nav. It's also worth looking for cars that were specified with the optional ‘Entertainment’ and ‘Safety’ packs, which add extra speakers to the stereo and autonomous emergency braking which helps to prevent collisions.
Skoda Citigo Reliability and warranty
After some gearbox issues on early cars the Citigo has been reliable, as has its Volkswagen and Seat siblings. Most Citigos were bought with a three-year servicing plan which means they are likely to have been well maintained over their lifetime.
The Skoda Citigo performed very well in the 2014 Driver Power survey, coming in 2nd place overall, but dropped to 32nd place in 2015. It ranked 65th for reliability.
The simple, three-cylinder engine is already seeing service in other Skodas, Volkswagens and Seats, so there should be few worries for reliability on that front.
Used Skoda Citigo
As with any used car, make sure service intervals have been met. On small cars like this especially look out for dings or dents from parking or rogue shopping trolleys. Look carefully, too, at alloy wheels if fitted as they may have suffered curbing in crowded city centres.
It’s unlikely too many Citigos will have covered huge mileages - as a city car, it’s likely to have spent most of its life in town.
The Skoda Citigo loses value more quickly than its Volkswagen and Seat siblings, however it still has strong used values compared to the Kia Picanto or Citroen C1.