1993 Fiat Punto GT 1.4 turbo


Don't buy this car unless you're a FIAT mechanic



This car is THE most unreliable piece of automotive machinery I have ever seen.

Mechanical engine parts and electronics were breaking down on a weekly basis.

General Comments:

It's fun to drive in the rare occasions that it isn't broken. It goes like hell when the turbo kicks in. It doesn't handle so well.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 22nd September, 2006

2001 Fiat Punto Sporting 1.2 16v


Nice little car


At 20 000 km there's a problem with gearbox oil leak. The problem was never fixed at 100%. But there's no danger because there's no oil beneath the car. I changed drive shaft seal, but the little leaking don't want stop.

I thing that the gearbox is not "strong" enough for sporty use. And the lever don't go smooth like the first day when I change fast. Maybe lever-gearbox connection need to be fixed.

The seats, not so good. Nice supporting, but bad inner materials. Maybe the problem is in the drivers weight...

The clutch pedal makes at time to time squelchy plastic noise. It's annoying.

The engine. Very little oil leak at valve-roof from the first days, not dangerous, but also not nice.

At 40 000 km came the major problem. It was and still is, that at idle the rpm go little fancy, under the min. and back. And now, at 70% of stopping in traffic, the engine turn it off. Very nice. The mechanic say to me that the problem is the error in central computer and because of that the air presure sensor at intake manifold get fault, also then the lambda sensor don't work well even if is OK. I need to fit new software in the central unit (100-150) and buy new pressure sensor (120). They say at service: serial error on 16V engines. That's OK, but FIAT did not make recall, well, that's not OK.

Position bulb have a contact problem some times, but it's OK after few seconds.

The doors are to heavy so I need to adjust them at time to time. Annoying. Also, I was having a experience of tightening several of "forgotten" screws on plastic cover in wheel bay. And the window was hitting the door, the one screw was "get away" somewhere :) ) ) ) ) so I put the new one. Also typical Italian errors in manufacturing.

The suspension geometry needs to be adjust at 40000 km. There's a little negative angle at front tires. That's normal for Punto. It handles better :)

The headlights have a condensation problem, but that's a very rear case on my car.

A yeah, the wiper-blades, they are crap, and the levers (in the motor bay) also. There's a little ball where 2 levers get connected an this ball get destroyed, so if you want a smooth work of wiper-blades at 1. slow speed you need to buy a new electro-engine because it's all the one part. And it cost just 120.

Strange, but I have no problems with H7 bulbs, maybe because I don't turn the engine if the lights are working.

General Comments:

Many little problems, nothing serious except the central unit error.

So it's a good car, nice performance, dead before 4000 rpm, but then go and go like a hell product. It smashes any other 1.2 or 1.2 16V engine. But I think that for 900 kg it needs a minimum of 1.4 l.

The gearbox have a nice 6 ratios. Very short, so he accelerate quite fast for 80 hp. In 1 gear he really smashes for 80 hp. The lever is hard, I like that, a little long trip, but it is OK. For normal use - perfect.

The steering is electrical so is not sensitive like hydraulic servo, but have only 2,5 turns lock to lock, and the servo is not soft, it have a nice resist.

Handling is perfect, it goes like a hell, nice job FIAT. Hard, stiff, and no roll in corners. But is not so comfort.

Brakes are great. Sporting have a bigger disc at front and calipers than regular 1.2. I specially like the feeling on the brake pedal, hard and stiff.

Driving position is little to high, and the dashboard also.

The HI FI, well it's a H of HI FI. Sub woofer, yeah...:) ) ) Nothing special. Serial equipment, but waste of money in oder way. Much better is solution of upgrading with aftermarket real HI FI components.

The consumption of fuel is about 7,5l mixed city and open road. That's quite low for this performances. I have reach about 5 l on 100 km on open road, and if you go pedal to a metal it go from 10 l up. The engine also have a little oil consumption, about 0,2-0,5 l at 10 000 km.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st December, 2004

3rd Feb 2007, 10:22

I would just like to say thanks for that review as it has answered most of my questions. I used to have the tick over problem, but now I know how to deal with it. The problem I am getting at the moment is the passenger seat runners keep jamming, I had the whole assembly replaced. It was OK for a while then started up again.

I agree with most of the rest of the review.