Fiat Punto Review Australia | Features, Specification, Price
- Car Reviews,
- Feb 20, 2021
This subcompact vehicle is something that demands some extra effort to get driven smoothly. No doubt, in the past years, magnificent refinements have been made but still, there is room for more advancements. Available in 4 styles (3-door and 5-door hatchback, convertible, and van), every Fiat Punto is an FWD with an engine placed at the front under a sturdy hood. If you are buying from its latest models, it will be an economical choice.
Where the technology fitted inside the cabin shows good connectivity, the exterior has a uniqueness. Manufactured from 1993 to 2018, the 3rd generation is named the Fiat Grande Punto (2005-2009), and the Punto Evo (2009-2012). The drive seems well-behaved in the town infused with a little twist of fun. Overall, the interior feels pleasant despite the lacking features. The chassis has a good fit and finesse but still feels like a cheap car.
The engine is the most essential part that decides whether you are going to have a pleasant ride or the rugged one. Well, in the case of Fiat Punto, you can say the rides are firm, stable and the motor is durable enough to last years. In the three-generation, 2nd and 3rd have more satisfactory engine setup of various sizes. Unfortunately, the road handling is quite unresponsive and uninteresting at times. But, the grip levels are impressive.
The gear can be jerky as well as smooth, depending on the engine size and mating of the gearbox type. If you are worried about the engine noise, then you must know that it sounds pretty loud to disturb a soothing drive. In short, the journey can be somewhat uncomfortable particularly for the longer journeys.
Coming to the complete motor, the independent (F) and multi-link (R) suspension supports comfortable road performance along with offering a better fuel economy. The engines in the latest versions are known to be smoother and subtler. The highlight is its nice and lightweight clutch.
As far as the transmission is concerned, Fiat Punto is available in auto and manual options. If you want to keep your option expanded, choose the Pop model with both manual and auto gear shifter. The Easy and top-spec Lounge models are only equipped with an automatic option. You will experience a smooth gear changing. Well, another option of the “semi-automatic” is something you won’t like. It lacks the smoothness of a traditional auto and has no dual-clutch auto.
The long list of engines can be pretty confusing. Apparently, the best option you have are:
✓ A 1.9-L JTD 8v offered on the models from 2002 to 2003
✓ A 1.9-L MultiJet 8v offered on the models from 2003 to 2005 and only in a 3 three-door hatchback
Fiat Punto Pop models have a 12.L engine that runs on petrol. The variations are 8v and 16v producing power of 45 kW at 5000 rpm and 60 kW at 5000 rpm, respectively. The complementary torque of 102 NM at 2500 rpm in 8v and 114 NM at 4000 rpm in 16v are exceptional.
The diesel option is available in a 1.9L size featuring a turbocharger. In place of the turbo, you can get a naturally aspirated motor with mechanical injection.
The Fiat Punto Sport is powered with a 1.2L 16 valve engine combined with a 6-speed manual gearbox. The option for the auto-mode is “Speed gear CVT” having 7-speed. The alternative is the 1.8 HGT engine capable of delivering 96 kW at 6300 rpm power. Whopping speed!
✓ The entry-level Pop variants have smaller 1.2L engine with the 8valves configuration
✓ The Punto compact-sized van is fitted with a petrol 1.2L 8v, a petrol/CNG 1.2L 8v, and a diesel 1.3L MultiJet 16v engine
✓ The 2013 trims might be an ideal option for those who prefer comfort and performance over speed. It is powered by a 1.4L petrol engine with significantly low power of 57kW. The highlight is the 5-speed Dualogic robotized semi-automatic transmission.
✓ The Fiat Punto EVO has one Diesel and one Petrol Engine on the option. Both are mated with manual transmission. The average fuel mileage ranges within 15.7 to 20.5 kmpl.
Moving on to the inside, the specs are acceptable as well as cheap in Fiat Punto. One thing we all can agree on is that the boot is sufficiently large and footrests are well shaped in all the trims.
2013-2015 model specs:
Along with a robust bumper, the black-finessed honeycomb grille is an absolute luxury. But, the interior is loaded with cheap-looking hard plastics. The seats are pretty comfortable even the rearward seats providing adequate headroom and legroom. The cabin and luggage space are reasonable for a car of this size. We can sum it up as the interior being simply designed but offering full functionality and practicality. Even in the Pop, the gauges and switch feel well put together.
Standard features in the Pop model:
✓ 15’’ steel wheels
✓ Bluetooth connectivity
✓ Hands-free calling
✓ Audio connectivity
✓ 6-speaker setup
✓ Electric windows (front)
✓ Denim highlights in the seats
✓ Height-adjustable and tilt steering
✓ Keyless central locking
✓ Smoker’s kit
✓ Powered windows
✓ 2nd-row split fold
✓ Trip computer
✓ Electric and heated mirrors
✓ Multi-functional and speed-sensitive steering
Standard features in the Easy model:
✓ 15’’ alloy wheels
✓ Premium dashboard trim
✓ Leather-trimmed steering and gear knob
✓ Cruise control
✓ USB inlet
✓ AUX audio connectivity
✓ Darkened headlight housings
Standard features in Lounge model:
✓ 16’’ alloy wheels
✓ Automatic two-zone climate control
✓ Leather-wrapped seats with electric lumbar support
✓ Automatic wipers
✓ Adaptive fog headlights
✓ Electrochromatic interior mirror
✓ Ambient lighting
✓ Electric anti-glare windows
✓ Rain-sensing automatic wipers
✓ Dark rear windows for privacy
✓ Rear roof-mounted spoilers
✓ ISOFIX child-seat points
✓ Minimum 6-airbags (Easy and Lounge get an additional knee airbag)
✓ Vehicle dynamic control
In the latest 3rd generation, the safety is enhanced with:
✓ Hill-hold system
✓ Cornering fog-lights (standard on the Easy)
✓ Traction control
✓ Electronic stability
Cons/Problems of buying Fiat Punto:
✓ Lacks Emergency Brake Assist, lane-keep assist, and blind-spot warning
✓ The electric steering feels vague and ultra-light giving a disengaging feels
✓ Old-styled single-color display screen
✓ The Microsoft-powered music management system in the earlier models is uninspiring
✓ Semi-automatic gearbox lacks the nimbleness
✓ Engines are low powered
✓ Gear Lever in 2013 models might be a bit confusing. Besides, it has no D for drive
✓ Noisy engines
Being an Italian supermini vehicle, Fiat Punto comes with a reputation of smooth driving manners but noisy engine, spacious cabin but cheap quality and satisfactory safety features. All three trims (Easy, Pop, Lounge) are quite affordable options. It is an impressive off-road performer. As the users say, the base Pop trim mated with a manual transmission is a preferable option.
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