The first generation Fiat Tipo entered the market in 1988. In 2015, Fiat introduced the Tipo for the 21st century. Do cars separated by more than 25 years have the same denomination?
The first Tipo replaced the Ritmo. It was a completely new plan in terms of aesthetics, interior space, equipment and technical solutions. Initially, Fiat offered a five-door version, and in 1990 it improved the version with a sedan (under the name Tempra) and a station wagon (Tempra Station Wagon). In 1993, Tipo underwent a facelift. A three-door version also appeared.
The process of introducing the new Tipo to the market was also done in stages. However, there was no differentiation of names. The whole family is known by the name Tipo. The concern of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles decided that it was a short and catchy name, suitable only for a hit car. And he didn’t miscalculate. A flood of orders, exceeding expectations, started pouring in even before the car was brought to the showrooms. In 2015, a sedan was presented, which hit the market a few months later. When customers took delivery of the first units in March 2016, Fiat was unveiling the Tipo hatchback and station wagon at the Geneva Motor Show. In Poland, sales of the hatchback started at the beginning of 2017, and those interested have to wait until June for the station wagon.
The first Tipo, characterized by strong lines, entered with its modernity, which was reinforced in the DGT version with a digital instrument panel. Fiat also prepared many engines (56-145 HP), made the rear hatch from fiberglass, and the body was faithfully protected against rust. Tipo had the right to please not only ordinary customers of Fiat. It has become the sales leader in some markets. So it’s no surprise that the model won the Car of the Year title in 1989, ahead of the Opel Vectra and Volkswagen Passat. The new Tipo, on the other hand, won in Autobest 2016 – a competition in which automotive journalists from 26 countries sit on the jury. As Dan Vardie, founder and president of Autobest, said, Fiat has given Tipo new meaning to the concept of ‘value for money’.
The old Tipo was built on the new Fiat platform, which in later years became the backbone of other models of the concern – including the Alfa Romeo 146 and 155, Lancia Dedra, Fiat Bravo and Marea, and even the sporty Fiat Coupe. Concern analogues are also present in the new Tipo. The floor plate, suspension components, drive units, switches, knobs and multimedia systems are similar to those used by the Italian-American company in various Fiat, Jeep and Alfa Romeo models. And this is not a loss at all, because none of the features of the new Tipo give the impression of being forced.
The classic body shapes of the old and new Tipo and large wheelbases of 2,540 and 2,638 mm respectively, allowed for a spacious interior design with plenty of room for bed passengers. Both doors can be opened at a wide angle, which provides better access to the interior. Another advantage is spacious trunks. The trunk of the first Tipo had 350 liters, and the current hatchback – 440 liters. Over the years Tipo has grown – 41 cm in length, 9 cm in width and 6 cm in height. Why hasn’t the passenger compartment grown to the same extent? It must be remembered that over the years the security requirements have been strengthened. A modern car must be more resistant to any kind of impact, and also reduce the impact of hitting pedestrians with a well-designed front apron. On the other hand, drivers began to demand higher and higher quality of work and better sound blocking.
The new Tipo is characterized by attractive lines, rather large. But the first Tipo also stood the test of time. The sample shown in the photo was made at the end of production – in 1995. It was put up for sale by the Warsaw company “Exclusive Cars“For PLN 11,500. The amount does not differ from the starting price of a clean Tipo. In Western Europe, sellers want from two to four thousand euros for a well-equipped model. The presented Tipo is no different from them in terms of its condition.
It has reached 112 thousand kilometers since the news. Upholstery and other finishing elements show little signs of wear. Equipment is surprisingly good – in addition to central locking and electric windshields, it includes an airbag for the driver and ABS. There was no air conditioning, but the interior could be cooled quickly by using the sun. The 1.6 engine is also important, as it provides good dynamics in a car weighing more than a ton.
Thanks to the improved design, the new Tipo is slightly heavier than its predecessor. The basic version can therefore be efficiently driven by the 95 HP 1.4 16V. The 120 HP 1.4 T-Jet engine placed under the hood of the tested sample accelerates the Tipo to “hundreds” in less than 10 seconds, and thanks to turbo charging it is also flexible. And not too greedy for fat. In the combined cycle, if it is used wisely, it will be equal to 7-8 l / 100 km.
Tipo has changed a lot over the years. The new version of the compact car from Italy is not, however, an attempt to revive the names. Fiat decided to use a well-known and loved name and general design ideas – including an attractive body line, a spacious interior and a good price-quality ratio. Has it had an effect? The market turned out to be the best juror. There is no shortage of orders, and the novel arouses great interest in the streets. When testing the Tipo, we heard several times: _I had a Tipo and I remember it very well. How does it make new? _
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