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Old 12th February 2007, 13:29   #1
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Default Coming soon: Grande Punto Abarth

Twin Turbo 200+bhp engine. 0-100 in about 7.0 seconds. Punto Abarth will take styling cues from the Punto Rally car. Features will include roof-mounted air intake, a wider track for improved handling, smart alloy wheels, a menacing black grille, dark-tinted projector-style headlamps, a discreet rear spoiler and lower side skirts. Expected price: about 15,000 pounds.



Boy, look at that Punto! Now thats a cracker jack of a car!

Story report by: Autoexpress UK.

Last edited by amit : 12th February 2007 at 13:31.
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Old 12th February 2007, 14:19   #2
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Thats an Audi-acious attempt to resemble Audi's trademark

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Old 12th February 2007, 14:21   #3
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Why can't these fools sell stuff like this in India? Why do we only get cheap '(third) world cars' from them?
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Old 12th February 2007, 14:38   #4
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Why can't these fools sell stuff like this in India? Why do we only get cheap '(third) world cars' from them?
Most likely because they don't have market here.

This car is for masses in Europe (cheaper than competition). Where as, in India, it will be perceived as fuel guzzler, too expensive (afterall its just a hatch, so why should it be more expensive than Swift/Getz) and unpractical vehicle, which is afterall just a "Fiat". Forget about Punto, these guys had tough time selling Palio. Unless they strip off Fiat logo and put on "Honda" or "Toyota" badge, there are no chances of selling this car in India.

Last edited by RX135 : 12th February 2007 at 14:39.
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Old 12th February 2007, 14:47   #5
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Its times (heck, all times) like this that I wish Fiat and Abarth were Indian and all their current products were Indian efforts. Imagine Tata selling a tuned version of the Indica for 5.5/6 lakhs. Will it sell? It will sell
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Old 12th February 2007, 18:01   #6
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Most likely because they don't have market here.

This car is for masses in Europe (cheaper than competition). Where as, in India, it will be perceived as fuel guzzler, too expensive (afterall its just a hatch, so why should it be more expensive than Swift/Getz) and unpractical vehicle, which is afterall just a "Fiat". Forget about Punto, these guys had tough time selling Palio. Unless they strip off Fiat logo and put on "Honda" or "Toyota" badge, there are no chances of selling this car in India.
These guys had tough time selling Palio not coz of its brand image , its more about not providing the right service .

Last edited by maxbhp : 12th February 2007 at 18:05.
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Old 12th February 2007, 19:09   #7
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Well the RS isn't a sales flop. Put a pseudo-boot on it and sell it.
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Old 12th February 2007, 19:38   #8
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These guys had tough time selling Palio not coz of its brand image , its more about not providing the right service
If you trace recent Fiat history in India starting with the Uno, you will find that Fiat got a lot of bookings for the Uno intially, partly because Fiat had a decent image then. But, they couldnt deliver on a host of other issues such as delivery time, sales experience, after sales service...the list goes on.

I know people who had to sue Fiat/Fiat dealers to get their booking money back....that after a loooong wait. These factors I believe tarnished Fiat image/brand in India. Siena/Petra and the Palio are brilliant cars but that doesnt guarantee sales in an image (and FE) conscious market like India.

Fiat needs a desperate brand boost. The Punto Abarth could provide that, even in small numbers.
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Old 12th February 2007, 23:36   #9
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Siena/Petra and the Palio are brilliant cars but that doesnt guarantee sales in an image (and FE) conscious market like India.
Not in the Indian context they're not. Indian cars should be FE, easy to service, and bullet-proof in terms of reliability. While I can't comment on reliability, the other two don't seem too certain.

Speaking of reliability, I remember a Palio blowing a radiator hose on track. Imagine doing that on a highway. None too reliable, that.
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Old 12th February 2007, 23:53   #10
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Originally Posted by v1p3r View Post
Not in the Indian context they're not. Indian cars should be FE, easy to service, and bullet-proof in terms of reliability. While I can't comment on reliability, the other two don't seem too certain.

Speaking of reliability, I remember a Palio blowing a radiator hose on track. Imagine doing that on a highway. None too reliable, that.
I agree with you on FE point. Coming to service, I am not sure of easy service or cheaper service in Indian context.

But I will disagree with you on reliability part. Seeing one Palio radiator hose blowing up does not necessarily tell us FIAT's reliability. I have seen indicas, esteems with broken axles, I can not probably say Esteems and indicas are unreliable. A broken axle is much worse than a blown radiator hose.
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Old 13th February 2007, 00:37   #11
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A broken axle could also be the result of going really fast into a bad ditch or something similar. I couldn't say the same for the hose.

FYI, this happened around atleast 3 Esteems, a couple of Vtecs, two Balenos etc. This was the only car to have an issue of any kind. And I've seen Palios hit the limiter once and go into limp-home mode. What sort of driver's car is that?!
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Old 13th February 2007, 00:49   #12
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Well if 15-18 kmpl with a 1.6 engine on the highway seems less to the indian junta,then I guess they deserve to own whatever they own.A manufacturer offers safety features so that India can move up to the ABS-airbags bandwagon,which are pretty much the norm elsewhere.It was and is still arguably the best hatchback in our country.Whatever,too bad people missed this one.Thanks to fiat and indian mentality.

And talking of reliability,nothing and I mean nothing that is mass produced can be bullet proof in terms of reliability. I have this close friend who wanted to buy a second hand 15000kms done 2002 palio 2 years back,because he loved my palio 1.2 then,but was coerced into buying a 35000 kms done 2002 santro for a price much higher price than that of the santro,roughly 70000/- .2 years down the line, he has spent more than 25000/- for suspension and engine related repairs, apart from the regular servicing.Whats more,his car's done close to 55000 kms now,so he would have to shell some moolah soon for new battery,clutch,tyres.

So was it really a good decision to buy the santro? You do the math and tell me if buying the Palio at that point of time would have been a better decision or not.But still, he thinks he made a brilliant decision by buying the santro and avoiding Palio.Why?Because people got that in his head.

I have an NHC in the family which is far more expensive to maintain than my palio 1.6 and has surprisingly been less reliable with electricals.At 25000 kms in 2 years, it requires a suspension overhaul and replacement for driver side power window.

Reliability,its relative, its just pure luck.I really dont think any manufacturer is better than the other,not even mercedes-benz.Its just that we Indians have pre-conceived notions about certain japanese,indian and european brands.

And Getz and Swift fall in the same category as Palio right?So what kind of fe do expect in the city from a Getz- 8-10 kmpl in the city like mumbai with a/c on.How different is a palio there,the 1.2NV to be more precise?
Palio is as reliable as a Swift,we all know that on this forum dont we?

So why do you say that palio is not a car meant for India?

There are a host of other things that went wrong with the manufacturer,and the timing of the car's launch was probably wrong.

I hope Fiat has a different story to tell about its brilliant products once the grande punto arrives
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Old 13th February 2007, 01:09   #13
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Originally Posted by roms View Post
Well if 15-18 kmpl with a 1.6 engine on the highway seems less to the indian junta,then I guess they deserve to own whatever they own.A manufacturer offers safety features so that India can move up to the ABS-airbags bandwagon,which are pretty much the norm elsewhere.It was and is still arguably the best hatchback in our country.Whatever,too bad people missed this one.Thanks to fiat and indian mentality.
I've yet to see a 1.6 giving 18 kmpl on the highway. Though I know of Balenos giving 15 kmpl in town. Why can't the Palio match that? And speaking of the norm elsewhere, why doesn't Fiat sell the Palio in the US or in the UK? How come we get some third-world-car while Suzuki can sell the Baleno everywhere, including India?

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I have this close friend who wanted to buy a second hand 15000kms done 2002 palio 2 years back,because he loved my palio 1.2 then,but was coerced into buying a 35000 kms done 2002 santro for a price much higher ... he has spent more than 25000/- for suspension and engine related repairs...

So was it really a good decision to buy the santro?
I would hesitate to comment on used cars and their running costs. But I've had good experiences so far with Japanese and Korean cars *crosses fingers and touches wood*. On the other hand, I've driven numerous Palios and Siennas, and there's always something loose or creaking or not working. The usual suspects include the AC and its controls, the inside door handles, the gearknob, the light and indicator stalks, etc.

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Reliability,its relative, its just pure luck.I really dont think any manufacturer is better than the other,not even mercedes-benz.Its just that we Indians have pre-conceived notions about certain japanese,indian and european brands.
And so does the rest of the world, evidently. Which is why the Corolla and Camry are some of the highest selling in the world, and the Fiat is NOT. But why ask me, ask some of the DXB BHPians. IIRC, one of them bought an Alfa, which is basically a decked-up Fiat, and lived to regret it. Hell, even at the VCCI rally, the Ferrari refused to start.

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And Getz and Swift fall in the same category as Palio right?So what kind of fe do expect in the city from a Getz- 8-10 kmpl in the city like mumbai with a/c on.How different is a palio there,the 1.2NV to be more precise?
Palio is as reliable as a Swift,we all know that on this forum dont we?
Both the Getz and the Swift put out 80+ bhp. Please tell me how much the NV puts out. And FYI, I have personally driven Swifts giving 12-13 kmpl in BLR with AC. I have also driven 1.6 and 1.2 Palios that barely go past 10 kmpl. And Balenos that cross 15 kmpl.

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So why do you say that palio is not a car meant for India?
Now when did I ever say that? Fifty big ones for the first guy that finds me saying that.
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Old 13th February 2007, 01:25   #14
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Well if 15-18 kmpl with a 1.6 engine on the highway seems less to the indian junta,then I guess they deserve to own whatever they own.
Well even my 1.5 VTEC when driven with a light throttle cannot do more than 16-odd kmpl so I would seriously doubt a Palio 1.6 giving out 18kmpl unless you were driving on a track under ideal driving conditions conducive to producing very high FE numbers.

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I have an NHC in the family which is far more expensive to maintain than my palio 1.6 and has surprisingly been less reliable with electricals.At 25000 kms in 2 years, it requires a suspension overhaul and replacement for driver side power window.
Wow that is very very surprising since it's the first case I've heard of an NHC giving out its suspension in 25k. My OHC ran absolutely fine on its original suspension for 100k!

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There are a host of other things that went wrong with the manufacturer,and the timing of the car's launch was probably wrong.
The product from Fiat is undoubtedly good but the company & its policies are absolutely horrible. Not to mention anything about the dealers, service centres & spares parts availability.
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Old 13th February 2007, 01:26   #15
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Originally Posted by v1p3r
Which is why the Corolla and Camry are some of the highest selling in the world, and the Fiat is NOT. But why ask me, ask some of the DXB BHPians. IIRC, one of them bought an Alfa, which is basically a decked-up Fiat, and lived to regret it. Hell, even at the VCCI rally, the Ferrari refused to start.
How many rallies does even Toyota enter into,heck they dont even have a performance division.

60% of the Camry sales come from the US and the corolla is the taxi of the world(excluding india,where it is a premium car).

Fiat sells very well in europe,the Grande punto does,its the leading small hatch in the european market and fiat dosent sell a single car in USA,they have small practical cars for europe but none for Big is Better, America.


The main reason that hurts Fiat is the notion thats its cars are fuel guzlers,which they are not.the palio weighs 1 ton and people compare it to a 760kg zen or WagonR and sure it will return poor fuel effeciency.

My 1.6 gives me 8-10kpl in city wich is good enough for a 100bhp car and on the highy it sure does close to 16kpl if driven lightly,but push it and it drops to 11-12kpl.anyway 2-3kpl wont save u a million ruppes.

Last edited by merve_extreme : 13th February 2007 at 01:33.
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