Skoda wouldn't be where it is today if it hadn't launched the Favorit. Designed by Bertone, the brand's first front-wheel-drive, front-engined car was one of the decisive factors behind the Volkswagen Group's interest in the Czech marque. The model came to be following a decision made by the Czechoslovak government in December 1982 to have the car fully developed by June 1985 and start production within five years.
It was launched in July 1987 at the Brno Engineering Fair and went to receive upgrades in the second half of its life cycle following VW’s takeover in 1991. The hatchback was retired in 1994 to make way for the Felicia, which was subsequently replaced by the Fabia we all know. This facelifted 1993 Favorit is a veritable time capsule since it has been driven for just 21 miles (34 kilometers) since the original owner from Athens bought it 30 years ago.
World's best-preserved Skoda Favorit
The story goes those miles were done on the way from the showroom to a communal garage near the owner's home. Skoda says she "simply decided that driving wasn't for her," so the car sat there for three decades before changing hands. The vehicle was found in the fall of 2022 and went up for auction. Racing driver Jiří Mičánek Junior purchased the hatchback for the princely sum of €24,000, which these days buys you a nicely equipped Fabia.
The new owner collected the car from Frankfurt and he also doesn't plan to drive it a lot. Save from a few scratches, it's factory-fresh and it even comes with a protective plastic cover on the seats. This Favorit is an LX trim with dealer-fitted faux wood trim and nifty graphics running along the sides of the car.
Being a lesser version, it doesn't even have a tachometer as all you got was a massive clock. Since it’s a later model that benefitted from VW’s know-how, the 1.3-liter engine with a mighty 54 horsepower (40 kilowatts) had Bosch electronics instead of a carburetor. It should still hit its advertised top speed of 85 mph (137 km/h) after changing the oil, filters, and battery.
We're used to seeing expensive, limited-run cars being locked up for years on end but this Favorit is a humble hatchback that would be perfect for the Skoda Museum in Mladá Boleslav.