I bought my car as a cheap, temporary runabout; I didn't intend on keeping it very long. 8 years later (LOL), I'm still enjoying the lively handling, the practical interior (especially the cavernous boot) and the almost negligible running costs - flys through it's MOT every time; only major expense I've incurred was changing the cambelt at 70K (£400)to be on safe side. I must get a new car soon (I've been saying this for years) but I can't bare to part with it...
overall a good car.Nice handling especially on motorways,just watch out for the electrics they tend to have faults.My motor on the window washer packed in. these cars do depreciate very fast,due to the large number of them on brithish roads. you can buy a good second hand one, 2001 plate for under £1000. very roomy boot,and a lot of extras as standard,great first car.
I bought this car VERY cheap as a run about. It came in part exchange at the company I work for and had no MOT or TAX. I paid next to nothing for it but was surprised when it flew through it's MOT with just a few bulbs. I was dubious about owning a FIAT as I work in the trade and know how bad they can be but I was surprised by this car. It had 85k on the clock and was a battered looking '96 Nreg. But with some elbow grease it looked half decent. However, I found that the few parts I did need to buy for it were rediculously expensive. FIAT Parts are way way over priced, even with my trade discount. I also found that my 1.4 was only returning mid 20's mpg wise which was a massive shock considering it was such a small engine. I even tried driving like my mother (there wasn't much poin tin doing anything else with such a small engine) and it still struggled to get even 29mpg on a run. The handling was pretty tidy for such a bulky old bus and everyone who travelled in it praised the comfort and the ride. Considering it was a FIAT and considering it was so battered and old, it was like brand new inside and I was surprised at the lack of rattles and how hard wearing the cheap looking plastics are. Overall I have to admit that I was impressed with the car (until a young girl in a Ford Ka decided to drive through it) I would definately not buy another one because of the parts prices and the fuel economy, but anyone looking to buy a cheap motor could do a lot worse. Just avoid the 1.4
I have been running the auto gearbox Brava, built in 2000, from 40,000 miles to 85,000 miles over a period of 2 and a half years. It has been good to drive, contrary to many opinions but is now showing its poor durability. First a front suspension spring just snapped when parked, then the auto gearbox 4th gear failed (Fiat quoted £4,000 for a new box), the alternator died (Bosch 95A) and the rear radius arms started knocking.
The first sign of the Aisin 60-40LE gearbox failure was blackening of the transmission fluid. It is probably the wafer thin clutches disintergrating that causes the discolouring. If you get this you can expect failure within 10,000 miles I would say.
Fuel consumption is very high for this model dropping to 23 miles per gallon around town
On the plus side the engine is as sweet as a nut. I run it on Mobil 1 and change the oil every 6-8,000 miles.
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