How Does The New Fiat Panda Differ From Previous Models?

The Fiat Panda city car was first launched by its Italian manufacturers in 1980, and the first generation model of the car was produced right up until 2003 with only a handful of minor changes. A more substantial modernisation of the car took place in time for the launch of the second generation model in 2003, which is sometimes known as the ‘new Panda’ or ‘Nuova Panda’ in Italian. In 2011 the new third generation model was unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show.

Over all of the years since its first introduction Fiat has sold more than 6.5 million units of the Panda around the world. With so many people having bought older versions of the car in the past, buyers interested in purchasing a new Fiat 500 may be wondering how the new version of the car differs from its predecessors, and so that is what this article is about.

Obviously the technology driving the new version of the car has been updated, but there have also been significant changes to the body. The new third generation of the car is longer than the previous one, a change which enables Fiat to offer a larger boot storage space in the new 500.

Under the bonnet a unique Twinair engine offers a good mix of performance and economy. On the motorway in fifth gear the new Fiat 500 can outperform any other car of its size, whilst more frugal and conservative drivers will be able to achieve a much better fuel economy and realise the low CO2 emissions of 99g/km.

For lower budgets the entry level 1.2-litre engine is substantially cheaper than the Twinair unit described above, but still offers decent performance for driving around town.

The new car has also had a major makeover in terms of the external style. The old car was very boxy, and towards the end of its lifecycle it came under sustained criticism for looking dated, so the company have put a great deal of effort into making the latest version look more modern and stylish. Large wheel arches give the car a surprisingly powerful appearance considering its obviously petite size. The designers of the new version Fiat 500 describe the design theme as the ‘squircle’, which means rounded off squares and oblongs featuring heavily all around the vehicle, from the side windows to the fuel cap. This gives the car an original, distinctive look which manages to be modern whilst also paying homage to the original car, but probably won’t be to everyone’s taste.