Rosie Price-Smith navigates out of the city and to Wales in the Skoda Yeti Outdoor, a spacious family car that fares well around small country roads and off-road.
It's a long way to Wales from London, and since I moved to the big city seven years ago, I gave up my car and there have been few and far between long car journeys since - like the odd trip to Cornwall with a group of friends to share the driving. But coming up was a six hour drive on my own, navigating my way out of congested London and on to roads that weave and wind through the country farms and occasionally off-road. I felt challenged.
Although without any children of my own, this was very much a family affair. I was heading to Wales for a family get-together for my mum’s 60th birthday celebration. It’s rare that she gets her four children together in one place for more than 24 hours - not even at Christmas these days - so we were on a promise. Added into the mix, a mid-term pregnant sister, her husband and their toddler, a heavily pregnant sister-in-law along with my older brother, and the youngest: my little brother and his girlfriend.
Short of getting a train to the depths of Pembrokeshire in the South West of Wales, delivered to me was the Skoda Yeti Outdoor on the promise I would do lots of driving while we were away to give everyone else a rest and Skoda promising that the car could handle Wales’ roads…
Space: This was everyone’s first impression: the feeling of space inside. Compared to some of the car beasts reserved for families in south west London, it looks smaller on the road. But once you’re in, it feels spacious. What it makes up for inside the ‘living’ space, it does sadly lack in boot space. There’s ample room for a weekend away with a smaller family though.
Navigation: I took some advice of a friend and got to know the touch screen navigation and radio system before I set off on a long journey, connected my iPhone (all ready with a driving playlist so I didn’t have to fiddle with the radio when I was driving on my own), and was guided effortlessly through the streets of London and on to Wales with the build- in sat nav.
There’s also a mini-nav in front of you next to the spped-o-meter so you’re not looking to your left to read the next move. Skoda safety, I presume!
Apart from space being ample, my favourite part of this car is how easy it was to drive. Despite looks, the Yeti is very light, and so navigated easily through the windy roads as I took the troops to a tiny village in the depths of the Welsh coast where we used to holiday as kids. There are one-car-wide roads for both-way traffic and to get to the little pub (The Point, in Angle), you’re forced to drive directly next to the water’s edge where there is copious bumps in the road. Admittedly on the way home from here in the dark, the navigation tried to make us turn left into the water, but it was all part of the fun in taking the Yeti off road, and otherwise it fared very well.
Extras: Complete with my Skoda Yeti came an in-car fridge also, which meant I could take the journey with sandwiches prepared and no smelly foods coming in to the car, perfect for a family in case you get stuck in traffic or there are fidgety fingers in the back…
Other extras for the Skoda Yeti include a dog guard and protection mat for your family pooch, in-car entertainment for those long journeys, and bike clips to keep your treasured two-wheels in place when you go off to explore cycling trails.
Engine: 4-cylinder in-line engine
Combined mpg: 46.3 mpg
Max speed: 190mph
On the road price, inc VAT: From £16,600