Review: FIAT Punto (2010 – 2018)
Low running costs thanks to economical engines. Impressive MultiAir petrols. Good levels of standard kit. Comes with a driver's knee airbag and five three point seatbelts.
Overly firm ride. Gear change not positive enough. Initially too expensive. Zero star 2017 Euro NCAP rating.
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FIAT Punto (2010 – 2018): At A Glance
Fiat's Punto has undergone several name changes. Renamed the Punto Evo in 2010, it reverted to plain Punto in 2012. However, it remains an 'evolved' version of the Fiat Grande Punto which was launched in 2006. That's not a bad thing though - the Grande Punto is a good hatchback that's fun to drive and good value - and the Fiat Punto Evo built on that.
The most obvious upgrades are on the outside where the Evo got a front end inspired by the funky Fiat 500. It certainly gave it a softer appearance compared to the Grande Punto although the styling does seem to divide opinion. There were changes on the inside too with a redesigned dash and a better quality feel.
There were new petrol and diesel engines which focus on economy and efficiency but not at the expense of performance. All the engines use a start/stop 2012 system to reduce fuel consumption when sitting in traffic and this has real benefits for the MultiJet diesels which can average more than 65mpg. The the main change under the bonnet came in summer 2012, when the turbocharged TwinAir engine became available.
Refinement has been improved, so the Punto, is quieter on the motorway and off it the Punto is easy and enjoyable to drive. The one let down is an overly firm ride which is especially noticeable on models with larger wheels but this doesn't detract too much from what is a very likeable hatchback.
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FIAT Punto (2010 – 2018): What's It Like Inside?
The Punto Evo is available as either a three or a five-door and both offer good passenger space. The three-door model looks good (especially the Sporting models) but getting into the back is tricky - although no worse than any other three-door car of this size. There's enough space for four adults though, and the five-door is ideal for families as getting to the back seats is easy thanks to wide opening doors.
The interior has been given a revamp and the hard angles of the Grande Punto have been replaced with softer curves and higher quality switches, giving it a more inviting feel. Features such as the piano black stereo surround and deep-set dials add to the stylish look and it's comfortable too, helped by improved seats with decent support. Sporting models get sports seats with extra side support and they're certainly effective. The quality and finish are good, although there are some areas where the plastics don't feel as nice to touch.
Sound-proofing has been improved over the Grande Punto so the Punto Evo is noticeable quieter on the move, despite a little wind noise around the front pillars, especially on the three-door versions. It's disappointing that air conditioning isn't standard on all models (the base level Active does without it) and neither is ESP stability control, but the Punto Evo is still decent value, with all cars getting a CD stereo with steering-wheel mounted controls and electric windows.
The clever Blue&Me system is also fitted as standard. Developed with Microsoft, this lets you make and receive calls on the move and can even read out text messages. It allows you to listen to MP3 players or music stored on memory sticks via the USB port.
Elsewhere, the driving position is very good thanks to plenty of adjustment in the seat plus reach and height adjustment in the steering column. The boot is about average for this class of car, but the biggest gripe is the high boot lid which makes loading (and particularly) unloading anything heavy quite a struggle.
Equipment from launch (January 2010):
Active comes with electrically adjustable door mirrors, 15-inch steel wheels, height adjustable driver's seat, electric front windows, ABS with electronic brakeforce distribution, driver and passenger airbags, driver's knee airbag, Blue&Me and a CD stereo.
Dynamic gets a leather steering wheel, leather gear lever, split folding rear seats, air conditioning, side and window airbags, fitting for the Blue&Me TomTom sat nav.
Eleganza adds metallic finish bumper inserts, 16-inch alloy wheels, interior ambient lighting, cruise control, rear parking sensors, rain sensitive wipers, dual-zone climate control, ESP stability control with a hill holder function and a third rear head restraint.
GP comes with a rear spoiler, dark tinted headlights, front foglights, air conditioning but doesn't have the climate control, cruise control or ESP of the Eleganza.
Sporting has side skirts, a chrome exhaust pipe, 17-inch wheels, sports seats, cruise control, air conditioning and ESP.
Child seats that fit a FIAT Punto (2010 – 2018)Our unique Car Seat Chooser shows you which child car seats will fit this car and which seat positions that they will fit, so that you don't have to check every car seat manufacturer's website for compatibility.
What's the FIAT Punto (2010 – 2018) like to drive?
There's a good range of both petrol and diesel engines in the Punto Evo range but the entry-level 1.4-litre petrol is perhaps best avoided unless you're just pottering about as it's fairly slow - although it can return an average of 49.6mpg. Instead go for one of the newer MultiAir engines. There are two available and they are both 1.4-litre units with either 105PS or 135PS.
The 105PS version is adequate enough for most drivers and is quiet on the move. It never sounds strained, even at higher revs, and performs pretty well when you ask it to accelerate with some feeling. 0-62mph comes up in 10.8 seconds plus it will happily keep with with faster traffic on motorways.
The top model is the 1.4-litre MultiAir Turbo with 135PS. This accelerates from 0-62mph around 2.5 seconds quicker than the 105bhp model and is very sprightly with an almost hot hatch feel from behind the wheel. The front can feel light under hard acceleration as the wheels sometimes struggle for grip, but aside from that, it's great fun and very nippy.
Most impressively, it's actually slightly more economical than the 105PS MultiAir with an average of 50.4mpg while CO2 emissions are also lower at 129g/km (compared to 49.6mpg and 134g/km). But if it's low running costs you're after, the MultiJet diesels are the ones to choose.
There 1.3-litre MultiJet is available in two outputs of 75PS and 95PS. They aren't the quickest or quietest of engines but they deliver decent in-gear punch. But best of all they can average 68.9mpg and 67.3mpg respectively while CO2 emissions of 110g/km or less mean they're cheap to tax too.
In town the Punto Evo is easy to drive and park in small spaces, helped by good visibility and a near vertical rear end. All versions get a City button on the dash which makes the steering very light at low speeds - ideal for parallel parking. It's also good fun on more twisting roads with little body roll and plenty of grip in corners.
One letdown is the rather firm ride which struggles on bumpy or potholed roads. This is further highlighted on Sporting models fitted with larger 17-inch alloys. The gear change is also quite spongy and doesn't always have a positive shift, so you can often miss a gear.
|0.9 TwinAir||67 mpg||12.7 s||98 g/km|
|1.2||52–54 mpg||13.9–14.4 s||123–126 g/km|
|1.3 MultiJet||67–81 mpg||11.7–13.6 s||90–110 g/km|
|1.3 MultiJet Eco||79 mpg||13.1 s||95 g/km|
|1.4||50–52 mpg||13.2 s||127–132 g/km|
|1.4 Dualogic||52 mpg||13.2 s||124 g/km|
|1.4 MultiAir||50–50 mpg||8.5–10.8 s||129–134 g/km|
|1.6 MultiJet||64 mpg||9.0 s||114 g/km|
Real MPG average for a FIAT Punto (2010 – 2018)
Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.
Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.
Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.
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