1990 Fiat Panda Reviews - Page 2 of 2

1990 Fiat Panda CL 1.0 (999cc petrol) from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1990
First year of ownership2002
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 1.0 (999cc petrol) Manual
Performance marks 3 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 4 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.5 / 10
Distance when acquired87000 miles
Most recent distance92000 miles

Summary:

Cheap-to-run no-frills city car

Faults:

Driver's door window lift broke. Fixed in 15 minutes with two screwdrivers and a piece of Duck tape.

Original battery needed replacing. Hardly surprising after 12 years.

General Comments:

Surprising amount of load space with rear seat folded down.

Excellent around town: not too sluggish unless heavily laden, and returns 45-50mpg (16-17 km/l).

Really easy to park despite lack of power steering.

Not so good on long runs. Four-speed gearbox makes it noisy on motorway and fuel consumption rockets above 60mph.

Seats become uncomfortable after more than half an hour.

Do not even think about carrying 5 people on a long journey!

In cold, wet weather will take more than one attempt to start, but I have never had to call out the RAC.

When not up to temperature, stalls very easily in cold or wet conditions.

Brakes are not servo assisted, but adequate provided car is driven sensibly.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 19th February, 2003

1990 Fiat Panda Dance 0.9 from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1990
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2002
Engine and transmission 0.9 Manual
Performance marks 6 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.3 / 10
Distance when acquired50000 miles
Most recent distance65000 miles
Previous carFiat Panda

Summary:

A reliable, cheap to run car with a good appearance

Faults:

I had some trouble with the gear linkages which stopped third gear working temporarily.

My last Fiat Panda developed bad rust, but this was after 150,000 miles. I have found that they will rust very badly on the front rim of the bonnet and the sills.

General Comments:

These are great little cars. They are perfect for someone who likes working on their car because they are nice and simply built.

My Panda 900 is actually quite a sporty looking car. It has nice alloy wheels, a sports exhaust, CD player and lots of custom electrical accessories.

The Petrol costs are very low as it is a 900cc engine and also has a 5 speed box.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th June, 2002

1990 Fiat Panda Sergio Tacchini 1.0 from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1990
First year of ownership1998
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission 1.0 Manual
Performance marks 5 / 10
Reliability marks 5 / 10
Comfort marks 2 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
4.3 / 10
Distance when acquired77000 miles
Most recent distance97000 miles

Summary:

Not a bad first car, but I'll try something different next time

Faults:

The head gasket blew within 10 miles of purchase.

The noise made by the tappets is deafening, but this is not a serious problem.

The gearbox is unreliable, forth is sometimes attainable sometimes not.

General Comments:

This car isn't very thirsty, it can go upto 300 miles between petrol tank fills.

I had some recent problems with starting, but this is better now as I have totally replaced the ignition system.

This car is better on the short journeys around town, where it is fairly nippy, but, on the motorway or faster roads progress is painfully slow.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 15th August, 2001

1990 Fiat Panda 4x4 1.0 fire from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1990
First year of ownership1998
Most recent year of ownership2000
Engine and transmission 1.0 fire Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.4 / 10
Distance when acquired50000 miles
Most recent distance75000 miles
Previous carFord Fiesta

Summary:

Asti Spumante on wheels

Faults:

Front wheel bearing.

Seized front brake callipers.

Fuel pump gave up the ghost.

Tyres will not hold pressure.

All the above fixed or replaced by me at minimal cost. I am no mechanic and all thumbs. This has to be the easiest car to work on I know. My other car is a Range Rover (same vintage) and the contrast in build quality and reliability is embarrassing.

General Comments:

It's brilliant and I love it. Our winters get down to -20c regularly and a foot of snow is no surprise. I fish, shoot and often use forestry tracks. The Panda eats it all. That Steyr 4x4 system is the same one they put in the Haflinger (remember them?). But the best thing is the expression on the faces of the loonies who cannot cope with being overtaken at 70mph on the motorway by a 10 year old Fiat Panda.

Why oh why did Fiat stop making them? My local Fiat dealer asks the same question. He says he could sell all he could get. I paid £650 for it 2 years ago and I daren't sell it. What would I replace it with?

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 24th September, 2000

16th May 2002, 15:06

FIAT still make them! (now 1100) sadly they haven't been imported to the uk for years, if you really want a new one, go shopping on the continent.

1990 Fiat Panda 1000 ie Dance restyling 1.0 from Netherlands

Year of manufacture1990
Engine and transmission 1.0
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 7 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.6 / 10

Faults:

Well, quite a list, but mainly small things;

Mass cable.

Camshaft (second hand for only 15 quid).

Light switch.

Light cable.

Ignition (twice).

Discs (front).

Turning-point of the left door.

Trunk lock.

Tab of the heater.

Spark-bulb cables.

Connection point of the lambda sond.

General Comments:

It may seem like quite a list, but most of it was due to bad maintenance by the previous owner. This car has in the last 3 years run over 45.000 miles and it only left me standing once. Costs seem to be stabilizing now, since we maintain it quite well. We have an excellent dealer, and most of the things that break down are merely annoying. The thing is fun to drive, pretty fast once it's warm (100 mls/hr on the German autobahn) and very very cheap to drive.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th February, 1999

Average review marks: 7.5 / 10, based on 7 reviews