If you like your cars compact and affordable but practical with it, here are a couple that should appeal; they’re the new Renault Clio Sport Tourer and Skoda Fabia Estate – both station wagon conversions of sub-£10k superminis and as such, both a bit of a novelty for us Brits.Although in days gone by a load-lugging version of the VW Polo was an option, right now the new Peugeot 207 SW and the old Skoda Fabia estate are the only genuinely small new estate cars you can buy. This new Clio estate will make a third option for us Brits – but the all new Fabia Estate won’t make its first months on sale easy ones.
Va-va-voom with a bit more room
Autocar brought you spy pictures of Renault’s new compact estate car back in February (see related articles below). Then, at the Geneva motor show in March, la Regie showed us the Clio Grand Tour concept. Now, Autocar can bring you the first official pictures of the production version (see gallery), ahead of its debut at the Frankfurt motor show next month.Renault is keeping schtum on many of the specifics relating to its new Clio station wagon until Frankfurt. For now, we know only that the Clio Sport Tourer is 4.2-metres long, or just over 200mm longer than the hatchback version; by the look of these images, most of that extra length is concentrated in the rear overhang. However, since it looks like every panel on the car aft of the B-pillars is new, it could be that the estate’s wheelbase is slightly longer than that of the hatch, giving it a more spacious rear cabin as well as a boot that will accommodate 439-litres of luggage with the rear seats in place – up from 288-litres in the standard car.
Czech there’s room for the dog’s box
The new Skoda Fabia Estate is slightly longer than the Clio Sport Tourer, and it’s also more spacious; Skoda quotes a cargo capacity of 480-litres with the rear seats in place and a useful 1460-litres with them folded; that’s 235-litres more than the last Fabia wagon and, interestingly, almost as much space as many Focus-sized equivalents.It’ll be offered with a choice of 1.2-, 1.4- and 1.6-litre petrol engines and both 1.4- and 1.9-litre diesels. The range-topping 1.6-litre petrol will even be available with a six-speed automatic transmission for those who don’t want to row up and down the five-speed manual ‘box that comes as standard. Prices on the car have yet to be made public on either the Skoda or the Renault, but expect the former to be considerably cheaper; the entry-level 1.2-litre petrol Fabia Estate is likely to start at well under £10,000, while prices on the Clio are likely to begin around £11k.