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Saturday, August 14, 2010

COMPREHENSIVE REVIEW: Fiat Punto Nuova ELX Speedgear

In this blog entry, I'm doing a COMPREHENSIVE review on Fiat Punto Nuova 1.25 ELX Speedgear.
THis subject's on sale in Malaysia from 2000 to 2003, about 400 units +/- made their way to
Malaysia thanks to TORINO Motors. About A quarter (1/4) of the 400 +/- units were Punto 1.8 HGT 3dr (photo below).

The Punto's resale value in Malaysia are as follows:

Price (RM)...13.8k....16k......19k......23k

Note this is Averaged asking price. Actual price depends on Mileage, Engine and gearbox Conditions,
Bodywork, Trim AND Lastly, it's Buyer's market since this is a RARE and COLD car in Malaysia (ie.
Buyers determined the pricing).

As usual, I don't have a car to test and brag/write about.

ALL ISS NOT LOST: I'm dishing out 1 Main review from Parker's UK, Specifications and Colour choices and top it off with a WHOOPING 15 owner's reviews...

Main review from Parker's UK


Fiat Punto Hatchback (99-03) ***--

 PROS   * Attractive inside and out, generous cabin space, easy to park.
 CONS   * Ride and handling sometimes lack composure. Inconsistent build quality
 With lively engines, unusual Speedgear sequential transmission and a funky TV
 ad campaign the second generation Punto was aimed at younger drivers. It is
 one of the best-looking hatchbacks around and exudes cheeky Italian charm.
 It's spacious, practical, easy to drive, safe and cheap. Reliability was
patchy and although most problems have been fixed under warranty, this is a
car for which an aftermarket warranty makes sense.

Performance  ***--

All are adequate for all kinds of driving. Most popular is the 1.2-litre Fire
 unit which manages to feel quite nippy. The 1.9JTD is probably the most
desirable for its mix of strong performance and exceptional economy.

 Handling ***1/2--

Easy to drive, well-controlled in or out of town, suspension takes care
of the potholes well and doesn't roll too much in corners. Power steering
has light 'City' mode that makes parking a doddle.

Comfort   ***--

Good head and legroom, supportive seats when new, but lots of wind/road
 noise on the motorway. The three door looks good but can be tricky to
get Grandma in and out of.

Practicality  ***--
Luggage space could be better for the class, but split-fold rear seat
s are available on most models, adding versatility.

Equipment  ***--

Later cars are much better and there are lots of special editions.
Speedgear is a six- and seven-speed sequential auto option on 1.2 ELX
and Sporting models.

Behind the wheel  ***--

Looked funky when launched, but starting to look dated now. Controls
 are reasonably logical and straightforward to use. Easy to get comfy,
but older cars can have saggy seats.

Safety  **1/2---

Standard equipment wasn't always brilliant, passenger and side airbags
 were optional, but a revision in 2002 was enough to get a four star
Euro NCAP rating. All models had an immobiliser. Alarm on the HGT only.

Reliability  *1/2----
Nothing major, but plenty of niggling faults that cost in both time and
money to get fixed. Inconsistency means you could get a good one but
plenty of 'Friday cars' abound.

Car check problem points

Body: Paint chips easily, door seals can fail leading to water leaks.

Engine/Gearbox: Can misfire when starting from cold.

Other: Premature rear suspension wear, electronics fail, so check radio,
 electric windows and lights.

Buying used ****-
Huge choice of cars. Many are 1.2s - the 16v unit is worth paying more for.
 Three-door Punto still looks good, later cars were better built and better
equipped. Don't pay too much, most were bought cheap when new.

Selling  ***--
Strong demand but very price sensitive. Service history helps it sell faster,
 but isn't worth a lot more money.

Running costs  ***--

Good fuel economy even from the 'hot' HGT engine. Servicing, insurance and
parts costs are reasonable, but you might need to budget for some repairs -
Punto isn't the most reliable car in class by some distance.

Estimated fuel cost for 10,000 miles/year:

£975 to £1575

The estimated fuel cost figure is designed to give you a rough idea of how
much this model will cost to fuel each year, so you can compare between cars.
It's calculated by using the combined drive cycle (town centre and motorway
driving) and the average fuel price. It's based on the following cost-per-
litre: petrol 112p, diesel 123p, and LPG 57p. Prices are updated annually.


Without further ado, let me present you the Specifications:


Body style      Hatchback
Engine size     1242 cc
Fuel type     Petrol
Number of doors     5
Number of seats     5
Gearbox type     SEMI-AUTO
CO2 emissions     155 g/km

Urban consumption: 8.4 l/100km
Urban comsumption kms: 11.9km/L
Extra-urban consumption: 5.5 l/100km
Extra-urban consumption kms: 18.2km/L
Average comsumption: 6.5l/100km
Average comsumption kms: 15.05km/L

CO2 Emmision: 155 g/km
Fuel capacity: 47 litres

0 - 62 mph     12.6 seconds
Top speed     103 mph (165km/h)

Cylinders     4
Valves     16 v
Bore × stroke     70.80 mm × 78.90 mm
Compression ratio: 10.6:1
Engine power     80 bhp @ 5000rpm
Engine torque     84 lbs/ft (114Nm@4000rpm)

Front Suspension: Independent, MacPherson Struts, Coil springs, Anti-roll bar
Rear suspension: Torsion Beam
Brakes: Front/Rear: Disc/Drum, ABS (optional)

Height      1480 mm

Length     3835 mm
Wheelbase     2460 mm
Width     1660 mm

Fuel tank capacity     47 litres
Gross vehicle weight     1485 kg
Luggage capacity (seats down)     1080L
Luggage capacity (seats up)     297L
Max loading weight     510 kg

Max towing weight (braked)     1000 kg
Max towing weight (unbraked)     400 kg
Minimum kerb weight     975 kg
Turning circle (kerb to kerb)     10.5 metres
Tyres: 165/70R14 (or 175/65R14 or 185/55R15)


ABS/EBFD (Optional)
Collapsible pedal support
Door open warning light
EAS energy absorbing steering wheel
FPS fire prevention system
Front crumple zone with reinforced struts
Front Driver's Airbag
Front passenger airbag (optional)
Height adjustable front seatbelts + pretensioners
Side door impact bars
Central locking
CODE immobiliser
Locking fuel filler cap

COlour Choices:

Metallic - Artemide (Light) Green        
Metallic - Astral (Light) Blue        
Metallic - Calypso Orange         
Metallic - Demetra (Dark) Green    
Metallic - Lingotto Gold        
Metallic - Orion (Dark) Grey        
Metallic - Scilla Red        
Metallic - Steel grey (Silver)   
Metallic - Teseo (Dark) Blue        
Paint - Solid
Solid-Indy Green
Solid-Tiziano red    


Let's proceed to Owner's review...

Surf to:


Saving the best for last: ADDED 4/8/2010 11.46pm...

Additional reviews from (a Fiat and Alfa Romeo club based in Malaysia)  From FOUR Fiat Punto Nuova Speedgear owners:

Comment 1: by Aircrew:

I'm contemplating whether or not I should invest in a 2nd hand Fiat Punto Nuova 1.3 as a family friend of mine had just bought 3 units of 2nd hand ones lately! The family's dad is really into it..and liked the car very much he bought one for himself,one for the daughter..and one for the son-in-law! Sadly, the son-in-law wasn't me!

Comment 2: bt thrace:

the punto is a great car! i got mine some time back from mlm. After reading through the forum i decided it was a good first italian car to start with. Only 1.2 but good power for city driving. Handles well and goes easily to 150km/h on the highways daily. FC is good too! Better than my previous myvi (sometimes i think better than my kancil). Of course maintenance is slightly more expensive than japanese but it's worth it!
Comment 3: Bravosx:
Any car needs maintenance at some point of time.
If you bought a unit from an ignorant owner who just pumps petrol and jalan, then that's very bad.

The Nuova is very reliable. Any vehicle with an auto tranny needs periodical maintenance. Same goes for this model.
I reckon the only two things that you need to look at on the Nuova would be the electrical power steering and the engine mounting (top unit). Other than that it's a pretty simple care.

Buy one off a private owner who maintains the car well. If from used car then it's 50/50 I guess.

[added by firadaniel]
Yup, and Go for it,

Nouva is a very reliable car as long as u taken care of the services and wear & tear parts. Make sure you got the service background records...
My bella has touch 160k km and the gearbox is still superb smooth like new...

my major repair so far is power steering motor, fuel filter and mounting... others is just service and small wear and tear...
Comment 4: by Chiapheng:
go get a nuova..i have driven 1 for the last 4 years and it has been great. i bought it second hand used 2 years. Previous owner had above average maintenance of car with all records. Overall a reasonable car to maintain in terms of cost. Good on petrol mileage, oil and filter only RM130, tax only RM72, insurance about RM500, 14 inch tyres at RM175 each, timing belts RM500. But unlike jap cars, i think you need to be constantly on the dot on servicing and maintenance.

Not without issues though. So far high tension cable leaked electricity. Replacement about RM110. Battery died in 8 months(got free replacement) may be due to faulty battery or car eats them up. Not sure. Wipers had some issue that stop wiping at one time. But problem went away by itself after couple of months.

But the satisfaction outways the few issues. It is a practical car with lots of storage place. Easy to park, drive around traffic clogged city.

COMMENT 5: by galileo:
ok, how's this? my stock 10 year old nouva just outran the golf GTi a coupla weeks ago(tun razak/kuching/semantan). not that i wanted to race, i needed to get to poslaju asap. but itu brader ingat gua mau race..sapa suruh..padan muka..makan asap. get the nouva!


Before I go, here's some parting shots:



That's all folks, thanks for having the time and patience to read this blog entry.

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