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Used Fiat Panda Review

The used Fiat Panda is frequently overlooked by consumers as its styling resembles a shoebox,

By Stephen Turvil
Jan 13, 2011
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The used Fiat Panda is frequently overlooked by consumers as its styling resembles a shoebox, its low price suggests mediocrity, and Fiat's variable build quality can be more alarming than an air-raid siren. However, the Panda is actually a pretty decent supermini and a three year old example could be yours for only £4,000.

One of the main issues with Italian cars is their 'questionable' build quality. Fortunately, Fiat worked hard to raise their game when designing the current Panda, and it shows. So, the interior feels properly screwed together, the electrics last more than five minutes, and there are no major mechanical horror stores. That said, the Panda is still a cut-price Italian supermini so there are more robust choices if longevity is your priority. VW Polo, anyone?

The Panda is available with a choice of four engines - the 1.1, 1.2, and 1.4-litre petrols, and the 1.3-litre diesel. My preference is the 70bhp diesel manual variant, as this has adequate performance and is the most economical. This cash savers dream hits 60mph in 13 seconds, reaches 99mph, and averages a highly creditable 65mpg. This aversion to gas-guzzling means its emissions are only 114g/km, so it sits in road tax band C/£30.

As well as costing less to run than a second-hand skateboard, the used Fiat Panda's driving characteristics are reasonably accomplished. The suspension, although firm, provides a comfortable ride and does a decent job of controlling body roll The five-speed manual transmission is slick, and the light steering makes low-speed manoeuvring easier than reciting the two-times table. These characteristics make the Panda ideal for nipping around the urban jungle.

Further Panda plus points include the spacious cabin, its 861-litres of luggage space (with the rear seats folded flat), and its reasonable specification. This includes power steering, electric front windows, twin air-bags, and a CD player. Original owners may also have specified extras such as an electric sunroof, metallic paint, and Bluetooth. That's a lot of car for less than the price of a family holiday.

More On This Car
Take one for a spin or order a brochure
Request a FIAT PANDA brochure
Request a FIAT PANDA test drive
By Stephen Turvil
Jan 13, 2011