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Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has launched the all new Fiat Tipo hatchback and its sedan sibling to the South African market. The Tipo family was developed around the brief “Skills, no frills” and combines the brand’s historic concepts of functionality, simplicity and personality in an extraordinary value-for-money offering. Personality-wise, the Fiat Tipo projects a dynamic style and a strong character in all versions with simple choices provided to the customer resulting in a range of engines and trim levels appealing directly to the heart of the market.

Locally two body styles, three trim levels, three engines and three transmission types will be available at launch. The sedan will be available in the POP or EASY versions whilst the hatchback will be available in the POP, EASY or LOUNGE configurations. The engine range offers one diesel and two petrol derivatives that target the heart of the 70 to 81 kW market. The transmissions can be 5 or 6-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic transmission depending on the engine. Fuel consumption ranges from a claimed 3.3 litres per 100 km.

Personality, comfort and load capacity

Like its sedan sibling, the Tipo hatchback is welcoming, practical and ideal for comfortable journeys. The designers adhered to the most modern ergonomic criteria in defining the parameters that measure the car’s capacity to respond to the need for onboard comfort. The result is excellent ergonomics: comfort, space configuration, accessibility, visibility and driving position. The Tipo easily accommodates five passengers, even tall people up to 1.87m in height at the front and 1.80m in the rear travel in comfort. Legroom is also class-leading; 1.07 m between the edge of the front seat and the passenger’s heel and 934 mm for the rear seat (typical of higher segment cars).

Furthermore, the centre rear seat has been designed as full-sized offering enough legroom to make every trip pleasant, even for adult occupants. The load capacity is also class-leading: 440 l for the hatchback and 520 l for the sedan. The boot sill is low and stepless, to facilitate loading even the bulkiest of packages. At the sides of the luggage compartment two panels for holding small items can be removed to further increase the width of the luggage compartment. The roller-blind on the hatchback covers the load and can easily be removed and stored under the floor panel. Two lights, two bag hooks and four load-retaining hooks positioned on the floor provide added convenience.

Finally, in case 520 l were not sufficient, the flip-and-fold rear seat with 60/40 split can be folded down to obtain a flat and even loading surface (not available on sedan POP versions). The interior of the Tipo features numerous compartments with a variety of shapes and capacities totalling no less than 12 l.

Engines and transmissions

The Fiat Tipo models offer an updated range of engines in three different capacities with two fuel options. They are the turbodiesel 1.3 MultiJet II, the Fire 1.4 16v and 1.6 E-torQ petrol engines. There are also three types of transmissions: 5-speed manual for the 1.3l diesel engine, 6-speed manual for the 1.4l petrol engine and a 6-speed automatic transmission for the 1.6 E-torQ petrol engine.

1.4 16v 70 kW

Solid and reliable, the 1.4 16v Fire is the entry-level petrol engine of the Tipo family. This engine delivers 70kW at 6,000 r/min and reaches maximum torque of 127Nm at 4,500 r/min. The engine, combined with a six-speed manual gearbox, is a four cylinder with twin overhead camshafts and direct valve control.

1.6 E-torQ 81 kW

For those looking for a vehicle that offers maximum comfort, the best choice is the version with 1.6 E-torQ petrol engine delivering 81kW of power at 5,500 r/min and 152Nm of torque at 4,500 r/min, mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission. . This power unit stands out for its light structure, owing to the adoption of exclusive components and graphite-coated pistons that are optimised to reduce friction and weight. Furthermore, the forged steel connecting rods and aluminium oil sump further reduce engine weight.

1.3 MultiJet 70 kW

The 1.3 MultiJet II engine ensures good performance and extremely low running costs, thanks to the standard inclusion of the Start&Stop system. The pride and joy of FCA engineering, this engine provides comfort and driving enjoyment. It is equipped with a manual five-speed gearbox and develops 70kW at 3,750 r/min, while the variable geometry turbocharger ensures high torque from low revs and a maximum torque of 200Nm from 1,500 r/min.

A feature of the third-generation Common Rail MultiJet II system is a high-tech solution for controlling injection pressures, whatever the engine speed and injected fuel quantity.

Tipo range

The new Fiat Tipo meets the needs of informed, pragmatic and solution-oriented customers who are looking for a car that meets their personal, family and work requirements with style, economy and favourable pricing.

The Tipo features the latest-generation audio systems including a hands-free Bluetooth interface, audio streaming, text reader and voice recognition, AUX and USB ports with iPod integration, controls on the steering wheel and, on demand, the optional rear parking camera and the new TomTom 3D built-in navigation system is optionally available on all models except the EASY.

Besides the generous array of safety devices, comfort and practicality are assured by the fitment of manual air conditioning (on the POP versions) and Automatic air conditioning (on the remainder of the range), electric front windows, electrically adjustable door mirrors with defrosting function and the 60/40 split rear seat (excludes sedan POP version). POP models feature 16″ steel wheels fitted with stylish covers.
EASY models incorporate 16″ alloy rims, LED daytime running lights, chrome door handles, body-coloured mirror covers and a leather steering wheel. A reverse camera is standard on the hatchback LOUNGE model, and an optional extra on all models except the POP.

The LOUNGE trim, exclusive to the hatchback, features 17″ alloy wheel rims, chrome details and a leather steering wheel and gear shift knob for an even more refined touch. Comfort and safety features include rear parking sensors, front fog lights, automatic climate control, cruise control, front armrest and driver’s seat with optional lumbar adjustment. The LOUNGE also features the UConnectTM infotainment system with Navigation as standard.

In terms of style, the POP and EASY trim levels are practical and functional without scrimping on flair and attention to detail. The hatchback seats are upholstered in black fabric whilst the sedan is available in Black and Silver on the POP or black/grey Structured Weave design on the EASY.

In the hatchback LOUNGE trim level, the comfortable seats feature quality materials and are available in grey fabric or black Techno Leather.

Safety

The Fiat Tipo targets the heart of the market offering modern active and passive safety devices such as standard, driver and front passenger airbags (with side and curtain airbags as an option). Also standard is electronic stability control (ESC), an effective but non-invasive driving aid. This sophisticated system helps to maintain steering control under extreme conditions, such as on wet or slippery roads, or when tackling tight corners or making sudden emergency manoeuvres.

The ESC system monitors numerous parameters such as wheel rotation speed, lateral acceleration and steering angle. If the driver exceeds the performance limits for the road conditions, causing the vehicle to oversteer or understeer, the system intervenes by braking one or more wheels so as to maintain stability. The ESC system includes a number of devices including Panic Brake Assist (PBA), which intervenes in case of emergency braking by increasing the braking force; ABS; traction control (TCS), which detects wheel slip under acceleration and intervenes by reducing engine torque; and Hill Start Assist, which maintains brake pressure for approximately two seconds after the driver releases the pedal.

Also available is Cruise Control on all EASY and LOUNGE models and can be selected as an option on the Hatchback POP model. Comfort and safety are assured by equipment such as rear parking sensors and a rear view camera, which returns crystal-clear reversing images on the radio screen, not forgetting the rain and dusk sensors and electrochromatic rearview mirror.

South African Range

The all-new Fiat Tipo Hatchback and Sedan is available from Fiat dealerships countrywide.
The range consists of:

Fiat Tipo Sedan

1.4l Pop – R229,900
1.4l Easy – R249,900
1.3l D Easy – R274,900
1.6l Easy Auto – R274,900

Fiat Tipo Hatchback

1.4l POP – R249,900
1.4l EASY – R269,900
1.4l LOUNGE – R289,900
1.6l EASY Auto – R294,900

All Fiat Tipo models come with a standard three year or 100,000 km warranty and service plan.

In other motoring related news, Volvo Cars recently partnered with Google to build Android into the next generation of connected cars.