Fiat will be unveiling its new Panda
at the forthcoming Frankfurt Motor Show in mid-September.
The new arrival, which will go on sale
in UK next spring, is a consistent evolution of a highly successful
city car that has always been a by-word for functional design,
manoeuvrability, space, reliability and comfort.
While still remaining true to its
compact design brief, new Panda has ‘grown’ by just a few
centimetres to ensure the attainment of the highest safety
standards, and improve the generous level of passenger and luggage
space still further. With an overall length of 365cm, width of 164cm
and height of 155cm, new Panda can comfortably accommodate up to
five people and is equipped with one of the largest luggage
compartments in its segment.
Panda was the first car in its
market segment (A), to win the prestigious Car of the Year award (in
2004). It was the first compact (less than four metres in length) to
feature a diesel engine (1986), and it was the first to offer both
four-wheel drive (1983) and a range of eco-friendly engines designed
to limit fuel consumption. (Panda Elettra, introduced in 1990, was
one of the first electric cars).
Now in its third generation, new
Panda has taken another major step forward in terms of comfort,
technology and safety equipment, making its first public appearance
with a modern and harmonious new style, but without relinquishing
the essential family feeling that has so characterised the marque
over the years.
An all-new flexible interior and an
elegant new exterior featuring softer, rounded shapes bring new
Panda sharply into focus as an engineering project which from the
outset was dedicated to improve an already successful model.
Construction quality and vehicle reliability have been optimised,
and while its exterior dimensions are an invaluable feature for a
car principally intended for urban use, it is easily capable of
tackling longer and tougher journeys.
The new engine range emphasises new
Panda’s cutting edge technology. Customers will be able to choose
from two TwinAir twin cylinder engines: the International Engine of
the Year 2011 85bhp TwinAir Turbo, or the brand new 65bhp naturally
aspirated TwinAir, both equipped with Start and Stop as standard.
The recently revised four cylinder 69bhp 1.2 litre Fire engine
completes the petrol engine range at launch, but a state-of-the-art
turbodiesel 75bhp 1.3 litre MultiJet 2 engine, also with Start and
Stop as standard, will also be offered. In harmony with its
eco-friendly spirit, new Panda also offers a Gearshift
Indicator, which helps drivers use the engine more efficiently, and
thus reduce fuel consumption.
At launch, the new Panda will be
front-wheel drive only, but a four-wheel drive version is planned.
Safety has been a priority in the new design, and new Panda has four
airbags, ABS anti-lock braking with a brake assist system, front
seat belts with pre-tensioners and load limiters, Isofix attachments
for child seats, anti-whiplash front head restraints, rear
headrests, and Daytime Running Lights – all as standard.
In addition, new Panda has been
engineered to accept Blue&Me-TomTom LIVE, a device that combines the
advantages of an infotainment system which is integrated and
connected with those of a portable navigator, opening the doors to
connectivity. The system allows new Panda customers to use mobile
phones and media players in complete safety, without ever removing
their hands from the steering wheel, while providing a unique and
distinctive navigational experience, built into the dashboard, and
offering the most accurate traffic information updated in real time.