Unlike the Fiat 500 city car and the 124 Spider cabriolet, the 2018 Fiat Tipo favors space and value.
The 2018 Fiat Tipo also featured the Type Two platform, an early example of the kind of modular front drive architecture that is now dominating the industry. The General Motors-Fiat Small platform that underpins the 21st century variant is unrelated but in many ways. Fiat has been using it since 2005 to support a series of models. All will be considered accessories for most buyers of the new Tipo. From Fiat’s point of view, the ideal combination with the past would be a repeat of the popularity of Tipo’s first sales. The board of directors of the company would turn again if this new assault on the C segment proved even half less worthy.
There is a bit of soft-touch plastic on the top of the dashboard, but hard plastic almost everywhere else. The hard stuff has a weird texture and some of the buttons and switches on the dashboard feel a bit low-rent. It’s hard to complain about it if you choose one of the cheapest versions, but you would expect a more upscale interior by paying for the kind of cash range-topping 1.6 diesel controls. The comfort is quite easy thanks to the adjustment of the steering wheel and the driver’s seat. If you plan to travel long distances regularly, it’s worth adding the Comfort Pack which provides adjustable lumbar support for the driver’s seat, as well as temperature control and a rear armrest. The high-end Lounge models receive these items as standard.
So far, we have only tried the most powerful petrol and diesel engines, which both have 118 horsepower. Although both can go from 0 to 60 mph in under 10 seconds, the Tipo never feels particularly keen. On paper, the 1.4-liter turbocharged gasoline engine is the fastest, although on the road, the 1.6 diesel engine is more muscular thanks to its rumble at very low speed.
Prices start at £ 12,995, which is below a Ford Fiesta base cost. And yet the Tipo is the size of a Focus.