- Two 1.0-litre petrols provide the power
- Choice of 60 or 75hp power ouputs
- Both need working hard, but good performers
There’s one three-cylinder, 1.0-litre petrol engine providing the power in the Citigo, available in one of two power outputs: 60hp or 75hp.
Entry-level 60hp 1.0-litre
The expected best-seller, the base 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol produces just 60hp and 95Nm of torque, driven through its front wheels via a five-speed manual gearbox.
Performance for this engine is leisurely, taking 14.4 seconds to complete the 0-62mph jaunt, and it will soldier on to a top speed of 101mph.
These figures shouldn’t be a concern for most buyers though. Granted, getting up to motorway speeds does take some patience and certainly gives the Citigo a workout, but the process is enjoyable thanks to an engine sound that makes it feel like a shrunken Porsche thanks to a great three-cylinder thrum.
It’s refined and relaxed when you don’t ask too much of it, though, making it perfectly fit for purpose.
More punch from the 75hp version
If you do regularly venture away from busier towns and cities, it’ll be worth considering the 75hp of the same engine. The torque figure is the same at 95Nm, so you’ll still need to work it hard when overtaking, but it could be worth it for the extra power.
It’s just as eager to be revved though, which means it’s enjoyable to make progress and, with a 0-62mph time of 13.5 seconds, it is slightly quicker. It’s still no fireball though, so we’d recommend trying both before you buy to see which better suits your needs and which you prefer. It’s worth noting that 75hp version is only available in SE L trim, though, which could limit its appeal to those wanting to keep costs to a minimum.
In both outputs, you’ll need to enjoy using a manual gearbox, as you’ll regularly find yourself changing down a gear or two to successfully make it up a hill without slowing down – the Citigo can get caught out in these situations. The throw of the lever is very light indeed, but it’s not as slick-shifting as Skoda’s other models.
Greentech for fuel saving, ASG auto for ease
Greentech versions of both engines are available, which in short means it comes with stop-start technology to reduce CO2 emissions to less than 100g/km. You can read more about how much the Citigo will cost to run in the Running Costs section of this review.
There’s no implication on performance though, with identical figures to the non-Greentech models.
For buyers looking for an automatic gearbox, there’s the ASG automated manual offering. With a 0-62mph time of 16.7 seconds, you’ll need the patience of a saint for quick getaways, while top speed maxes out at 101mph.
- Citigo offers very tidy handling
- Body control is good
- Steering is light and lacking in feel
The Citigo is primarily aimed at drivers who spend a lot of time in city centres or surrounding areas and so it is extremely versatile and easy to drive.
The steering is light and direct, but you don’t get much in the way of feedback through the wheel. However, carrying out manoeuvres such as reverse parking and three-point turns is easy since the car has a small turning circle of just 9.8 metres; perfect for navigating city streets.
The excellent lower-speed handling can mean sacrifices at higher speeds, though. When cornering at higher speeds that light steering isn’t particularly confidence-inspiring, but it’s unlikely many Citigo drivers will be driving like they’re on a rally stage.
There is a little bit of body roll in the corners and, for the most part, the Citigo feels very composed and balanced, making it feel like a much bigger car to drive than it really is.
The Monte Carlo version is lower and stiffer than the standard Citigo, so it's blessed with even better handling and less body roll in bends. There is a trade-off, of course, in terms of ride quality, which comes down to how much you enjoy throwing your Citigo around corners.
- Revised dash from the VW Up
- More personalisation options
- Easy to get comfy and operate
Sitting in the driver’s seat of the Citigo you get the impression this is a grown-up car. There’s switchgear from other Skoda models and the materials used feel robust and of good quality. Fixtures and fittings seem very well screwed together and there’s also surprisingly good visibility, meaning you can always see what’s around you.
It’s very easy to find a comfortable driving position, too, thanks to a wide range of adjustment in the seats and steering wheel, plus there’s a great sense of space thanks to large windows and dashboard/centre console that aren’t too bulky.
The big windows and skinny pillars also mean visibility is very good, and even Monte Carlo models with black headlining feel spacious inside.
Excellent quality and slick infotainment
Before it was facelifted, the Citigo’s interior was solid and easy to use, but offered very little in the way of flair and excitement.
Now though, different colours can be specified for the full-width section of the dashboard to brighten things up, while the controls themselves have been redesigned.
They’re now very slick and easy to use, and while the main infotainment controls don’t feature a touchscreen, it’s very easy to use thanks to a really crisp little screen and easy-to-use buttons below it. It’s the same for the heating and ventilation controls, which are sited high up on the dashboard for easier access.
Some models also come with a smartphone cradle located on top of the dashboard. When fitted, a Skoda app called Move&Fun can be downloaded. Everything – including sat-nav – is controlled through this system. It makes using an infotainment system familiar for drivers who spend a lot of time using their phone when they’re not driving.
- Very composed ride
- Soaks up bumps very well
- Seats especially comfortable
Skoda’s engineers have done a great job when it comes to the quality of the Citigo’s ride. It feels incredibly grown-up and not at all like a small city car. Bumps and holes in the road are soaked up incredibly well and it’s a very comfortable place to be.
It’s especially noticeable when you drive through a city with potholed streets, drain covers and broken surfaces – only the very worst of these will really thud through the cabin. In this sense, the Citigo not only feels incredibly capable, but also very solidly built.
The front seats deserve special mention too – they’re not only extremely comfortable and supportive but they’re stylish too, with the integrated headrests giving it a modern and funky feel.
There’s genuinely enough room for four adults too, but taller passengers won't want to spend extended periods of time in the rear seats if they’re behind a particularly tall driver. There’s a really impressive amount of space on offer for such a small car, though.
You can’t hear much in the way of wind or road noise but that lively engine does tend to get a bit vocal if you edge into the upper echelons of the rev range.
If you're looking to make more use of those rear seats, it's worth buying the five-door version. Although it doesn't look as good, the additional practicality of this bidy style makes it the one to have for small famiies.