1996 Fiat Punto SX 1.1 from UK and Ireland


Great little run about


Since I've owned it, nothing has gone wrong in the slightest.

When I bought the car it had a slightly wobbly drivers seat (probably because the previous owner was a little fat).

General Comments:

I love my little Punto. It's great to drive and fun for such a small engined car!

Even though its only a 55 bhp 1.1 litre it's very nippy, even compared to the Clio 1.2 litre 16 valve I learnt to drive in.

The interior is very spacious, virtually every passenger I've had has commented on how roomy it is.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th August, 2002

1996 Fiat Punto TD SX 1.7 from UK and Ireland


A small car with a big heart for a small pocket


Water pipe burst while driving. Result was over heating. Radiator was never right after this and needed replacing. Many holes wear found. This happened at around the 90 000 miles mark. New battery & starter motor at around 90 000 miles as well.

At 136 000 a new suspension arm was fitted. Bushes cannot be replace so a whole arm must be fitted. New exhaust fitted as well.

Number of tyres and breaks replaced.

Rear brakes once fell apart, preventing me from reversing!

General Comments:

The TD SX is a little car that can pack a lot in the back.

The diesel seems at first slow, but at 2 and a half thousand revs the turbo kicks in giving that little bit of power just where it is needed. Sits on the motorway at 70 mph fine. The TD is a little noisy then most diesels.

Running cost, taking into account repairs, servicing and fuel (not purchase price, insurance or tax) 11 pence per mile.

156 000 on the clock and still going strong.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 19th April, 2002

1996 Fiat Punto SX 75 1.2 petrol from Greece


Cheap and easy to service car for the young at heart!


Nothing much I would say. The two exhaust mufflers after the catalytic converter were replaced (both 120euros) but that's something all Fiats are prone to go wrong with. It failed to start once and it turned out to be some dirt particles in the fuel regulator that blocked it and made it return the fuel back to the tank.The regulator needed some cleaning! Other than the above nothing. Just the usual oil changes filters and gas.

General Comments:

Very pleasant car to drive. Full of life. Very good engine, roomy interior, nicely designed. Not many rattles. Nice sound from exhaust and engine especially above 4500rpm. It's like it is talking to you and tempting you to step the gas pedal more and more!Handles as somebody would expect for a front wheel drive car (plain understeer rarely turned to progressive oversteer if the road is slippery).Very cheap to run (for instance brake pads cost 20euro only while the brake discs 35euro).Most services can be done without the need of a mechanic.

Sadly the new Punto isn't as fast as mine and that's the only reason I won't buy the new.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th April, 2002

1996 Fiat Punto 55S 3-door 1.1 petrol from UK and Ireland


Practical, cheap and reasonably cheerful


New exhaust at 29,000 miles.

New alternator and battery at 38,000 miles.

Both doors, which are very large, heavy and poorly-hinged, suffered damage when opened in a gale.

The passenger door has paint damage from that incident which I have been touching up, but it is getting steadily worse and eventually the whole door will have to be re-sprayed.

Also the driver's door hinge was bent out of shape so that it would not close properly and although I had this fixed, the door and front wing are slightly dented.

General Comments:

Average fuel economy at 46 MPG is impressive.

Performance is adequate, especially given the size of the engine, and the car actually feels fairly lively in the lower gears despite a lack of outright acceleration. It is quite happy at an 80 MPH motorway cruise and maintains its speed even on uphill stretches.

The car handles reasonably well, but the ride quality is disappointing.

The steering is under-geared so that while it is very light at low speeds (despite being unassisted), sharper corners require a lot of wheel-twirling.

Interior space is outstanding for a car of this size and age, although the boot isn't huge.

However the seats, which are perfectly comfortable on short journeys, do not offer enough support on longer journeys.

The original dashboard speakers were terrible - I replaced them with JBLs which was a big improvement. The radio/cassette unit is also not up to much, although on the bright side at least no-one will steal it.

Other minor gripes include a strange smell from the heater and the immobiliser system which occasionally fails to recognise my key first time.

The above complaints aside, however, this car has been practical and generally reliable, cheap and pleasant to own.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd April, 2002

12th Dec 2007, 07:30

The odd smell you mentioned may have been a problem with the heater matrix. From what I've heard this is a common problem.