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Fiat Punto Evo 1.3 16V in the test: The Grande Punto becomes the Evo

Hans-Dieter Seufert
Fiat Punto Evo 1.3 16V in the test
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Evolution - that sounds nice. Certainly nicer than its big sister, the Revolution. When you hear this term you think of upheaval, chaos or rolling heads. So let's dedicate ourselves to evolution, to gentle improvement. Although she also sifts out unnecessary in the long term - Darwin sends his regards. Maybe the F iat troop in the back of their minds when they prescribed a delicate fitness program for the Grande Punto.

The Fiat Punto Evo doesn't seem particularly rocky

Away with Grande, here with Evo - plus a redesigned face plus technical changes such as optimized acoustic seals. In addition, the new Fiat Punto ESP as standard , seven airbags and a hill start aid. The latter is something that Italy freaks think of as the very last thing when referring to the term Evo. Their glowing hearts prefer to pay homage to the Lancia Delta Integrale Evoluzione, which rocked wide-gauge and turbo-whipping over asphalt and gravel. The Punto Evo doesn't seem particularly rocky, especially since it parted with its Maserati-like grill.

The line of the new Fiat Punto looks harmonious

Its new face goes straight through as something Far Eastern - albeit a very clean one. In interaction with the sills of the racing version, the line looks harmonious - from the headlights with standard cornering lights to the aluminum wheels to the redesigned taillights. Not to forget the inner values. For example, the Punto Evo Racing provides stereo and air conditioning as well as a speakerphone at a price of 18,300 euros. Users of Tom-Tom navigation devices might be interested in the corresponding dock in the dashboard (60 euros).

The dashboard of the Fiat Punto Evo is extremely tasteful

Speaking of the dashboard: Here, the Fiat people have topped up on the attractive predecessor. The synthetic leather cover stretches even more extensively over the dashboard, combined with high-gloss passages in piano lacquer look plus a silvery frame. And so tastefully that one graciously overlooks the still existing hard plastic surfaces. It prepares more anywayPleasure to look at the chic round instruments in caves, which are even forgiven for the impractical scaling.

The 1.3 liter multijet diesel in the Fiat Punto comes out of the blocks relatively tough

In between is the digital display known from various Fiat models, from which, after a short period of familiarization - the controls are operated via steering wheel levers and buttons - you can elicit various information on average consumption and more. To forgive the sometimes sluggish run of the needles is much more difficult. The 1.3 liter multijet diesel is to blame for their phlegmatic movement. Despite revised common rail injection (1,600 bar), variable charger geometry and more power and torque than its predecessor (now 95 hp and 200 Newton meters), it comes out of the blocks relatively tough. Which is also because they stole sixth gear from Fiat in the course of evolution.

At high engine speeds it gets loud in the Fiat Punto Evo

This improves the starting position for the measurement procedure of the ECE standard consumption, but in return it forces it to take large gear jumps on. Subjectively, the descent is not very pleasant due to the combination of a long accelerator pedal travel and deep turbo lag. Well, the 1.3-liter just needs speed, you mean? But then it gets loud in the interior. Metallic, groaning and vibrating, the Multijet documents that higher tours are just as unsuitable for it as a burly acceleration from the lower speed range. Anyway, it should be economical, which is why it has a standard start-stop system and gearshift indicator in the cockpit.

The Fiat Punto Evo consumes 6.3 liters per 100km

According to Fiat, that alone saves up to 15 percent diesel. In the test, the Fiat Punto Evo consumed 6.3 L /100 km, 0.2 liters less than its predecessor, but almost one liter more than a 105 hp VW Polo 1.6 TDI. In order to reduce consumption even further, Fiat would like to mobilize an additional 15 percent savings potential between the driver's ears and offers free software on the Internet that analyzes and evaluates one's own driving style and gives tips for improvement. The electrically assisted power steering could do with a bit of improvement, as it is a lot synthetic. This does not prevent the 1.2-ton truck from sharpening corners in a nimble and predictable manner.

The four-meter-long Fiat Punto Evo is comfortable to travel

The chassis, which has better noise-insulating rubber bearings compared to the Grande Punto, still remains in the small car. Stuck in midfield. Woody response to short bumps as well as a pronounced stucco tendency on bumpy concrete slab highways cost sympathy. In return, the interior noise level remains unobtrusive apart from the diesel engine, which is always present, and both wind and chassis are acoustically restrained. With that it travels wellfour meter long Punto Evo comfortably. The space available on the satisfactorily upholstered seats in the airy interior is easily enough for four adults. Even on long journeys, mutinies are not to be expected from the back seat.

Lots of storage space with the rear seat backrests folded down

If the standard luggage space of 275 liters requires a little restraint when packing your suitcase, the Punto offers 1,030 liters with its flat rear seat backrests. Consequently, Fiat saw no need for evolution here. With the diesel engine and the chassis, the improvement could have been a bit more tangible. The harmonious look of the Punto Evo deserves it.


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