Written on: 04/05/2014 by Duke_Nukem (16 reviews written)
I wanted a small 4x4 and there are not many on the market. I live in the hills of South Wales where I'd be cut off in heavy snow without a 4x4, but with this last mild winter (2013-4) there has been no chance to test this aspect yet.
Anyway, it is pleasant to drive although a bit harsh under acceleration (expect with a diesel), seems well made, and practical for a small car. I am not interested in high performance. Some minor gripes are the excessive amount of "nagging" from a bleeper and the instruments (eg advice to change gear), that the rim of the steering wheel obscures the critical 30-50 mph part of the speedometer, that you cannot switch off the running lights (salesman told me they are a legal requirement now?!), and the level external "shelf" below the tailgate collects puddles and mud (they should have sloped it down).
I am suprised that there is the 2-cyl "Twinair" engine option on the 4x4. That is a motorbike engine, with the very opposite characteristics that are desirable for a 4x4. Even to pretend to be serious, a 4x4 needs a low-rev-high-torque slow-slogging type of engine. I see Fiat try to compensate by adding an extra low gear withthe Twinair. Ditto that a spare wheel is only an option (I opted); even to pretend to be a serious 4x4 you need to carry a spare wheel (rather than a blow-uo goo aerosol) because you might have cut your tyre to ribbons on rocks, or dented the wheel rim when you slide in that snow.
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