15th Jan 2007, 08:23

Hi all, and happy new year from La Belle France.

I bought my Punto SLX new in 2000, and I've "only" had the wiper linkage problem (€170), head gasket (€500) and today the new dashboard (€500). My car has been serviced by Fiat at least once yearly since I bought it.

However, given that the dash/computer electronics thing is clearly a (very expensive) design fault, I've just written to Fiat in Italy offering to give them the publicity their best-seller deserves, particularly as they're soon to launch their new baby, the Fiat 500. I've had a great deal of success with consumer battles over the years, and I'm prepared to go all the way with this one, as I believe Fiat have a legal duty to recall and replace parts which they know to be defective.

Can I encourage you all to do the same? Fiat.com 'Contact us' will do fine - let rip politely, and for those of you with media contacts: use the power of the 4th estate.

9th Feb 2007, 17:55

As an owner of a Fiat Punto ELX 1.2 2000 over the last 6years (bought it when it was a year old) I have met with a few of the problems that have been mentioned.

Cylinder head gasket blew, problem with the linkage of the wipers and the fan on the heater has recently given me problems.

One of my friends who was a mechanic fixed the windscreen, wiper linkage permanently by drilling through the linkage arm and putting in a bolt. That was 4 years ago have had no problem since.

Have owned an Audi Quatro, a Citroen AX, a Peugeot 405 and can honestly say for the money this is the best quality and most fun car I have been fortunate enough to drive.

15th Feb 2007, 15:48

I have recently purchased a 2006 Punto Grande and from the very first day I have encountered problems with a plastic fitment covering the screws on the wing mirror. The fitment keeps falling off and exposing the wiring for the electric wing mirror and windows.

7th Mar 2007, 07:27

They are RUBBISH.

Owned one for 5 months 2000 1.2 elx and I've had a new clutch, a new head gasket and now need a new radiator!!!

Do not TOUCH!!

23rd Apr 2007, 05:55

I have a 2001 8v fiat punto and have no problems as of yet, I'm the third owner. The only problem I have had with it is the power steering warning light occasionaly comes on and the steering fails, anyone know how much this will cost?

14th May 2007, 07:03

Well I'm glad it is not just me. I have had my Punto for exactly one year and have just had my second exhaust (both of which fell off). My car sounds horrible all of the time, especially when I go around corners as apparently it is a design fault in these models that the axle rubs against the exhaust. Just hope potential buyers don't see this or I'll never get rid of it!!

14th May 2007, 07:32

Had my 1.2 X reg Punto for two years now.. it's not a good car.

Apart from being a pretty poor drive, it has many faults.

The head gasket has gone once already, and judging by other comments on this forum, I can expect it to go again soon. 3 new exhausts, new brakes, window wiper linkage regularly brakes, usually in the outside lane of the motorway! High revs without touching the accelerator, and door handles that jam.

My latest problem (and hopefully somebody might be able to help me with this) is that if I drive the car for a short time (say 20 minutes), then stop, the engine it won't start again; it ticks over, but will not start. I have to leave it a good half hour before I can drive it again. I know somebody else with a Punto with exactly, the same problem, neither of us has found a solution.

Any suggestions?

25th May 2007, 08:02

I Recently bought a Fiat Punto that had been used am having a problem on it when I slow down it just cuts out and I bang and bang on the acceleraor, but the car doesn't move for a good 60 sec then when it does it zooms and skids what is the problem? please help.

3rd Jul 2007, 08:02

I know how you feel, but really, put the Punto down and step away.

It's a handsome looking car, seemingly good value for money and is great to sit in. However, the quality is shocking. I've thrown money at this car nearly every month, fixing x, y, z on it. Honestly, it's not worth the heartache.

FWIW, repairs in the last six months include a new exhaust (today), head gasket and cam, water pump, 4 new tyres (appreciate that's wear and tear) and the bonnet.

It's only now reaching 43K.

12th Jul 2007, 11:45

Can anyone tell me how to get the front headrests off my Fiat Punto? It's a 2002 model.

13th Aug 2007, 01:34

Do not buy a FIAT PUNTO unless you are happy with having the following happen to you...

1. Head gasket went at 36,000 and again at 66,000

2. Exhaust fell off.

3. Front wiper linkage broken 3 times, last time on the A1 at 80 m.p.h

4. Rear shocks broken.

5. Clutch replaced.

6. 6 months later clutch and gear box replaced.

7. Brakes replaced numerous times.

8. Radiator broken.

9. Front headlamp replaced.

10. Numerous lights replaced.

11. Problem with the fuel indicator.

Getting rid on Wednesday. DO NOT buy this car!!!

26th Sep 2007, 05:44

My daughter had a Punto and had all the usual problems i.e. two head gasket failures, windscreen wiper linkage failure and the last straw, power steering failure. She then part exchanged to a dealer who was aware of the steering problem.

The only advice I can give is don't buy a Punto. However, for what it's worth, if you can use simple hand tools (spanner and screwdriver) to remove the bonnet, grille in front of the windscreen and wiper motor, the wiper linkage can be fixed by securing the arms to the crank by pushing on a 'star lock' washer (the sort of thing used to secure wheels on children's toys). You can get them from local industrial fastener suppliers. The whole job takes about 2 hours and needs 2 people to remove the bonnet safely.

8th Nov 2007, 11:10

I have had my Punto for 18 months now - apart from head gasket, brake pads, constant headlight failure on drivers side and wiper linkage breaking my clutch has now gone. I also need a new bonnet catch as it takes a good few slams before I can get the bonnet to close. I don't think I can take any more, but I would feel guilty selling the car on to someone who's gonna have to put up with all of that. Fiat shouldn't be allowed to sell these cars, all W reg Puntos should have been recalled and replaced when these problems started to appear.

13th Nov 2007, 05:46

Morning Chaps & Chapettes.

My W plate 2000 has gone into the Dr's this morning to have its thermostat replaced, purchased for a mere £12 (incl VAT!), the fitting of which will set me back £35 plus VAT. Was going to do it myself, but didn't have the correct tools and more worried about causing more issues like air-blocks etc. Now I'm praying this will resolve the following issues:

Revving when it wants to,

Juddering when idling and when pulling off,

Heater fan working when it wants to,

Blowing cold air,

Over heating (red warning light coming on/off),

Hose into Radiator Hot, Radiator Cold, Hose out Cold,

(Radiator Fan works though!)

Coolant coming out of expansion tank.

Now the reason why I'm praying it will work is because my local Fiat Dealer seems to think that will resolve the issue. His first diagnosis was that it potentially be the Head Gasket problem, but changed his mind when I told him his dealership changed the Head Gasket 10'000 miles earlier! Other advice that I have been offered is that it could be ECU (available on ebay for about £125.00) or the coils, or it could be a combination of both. Or, it could just be a blockage.

Now I've had the car since new, dealer serviced, and currently it has done 53'000 miles. It has had the following done:

Handbrake cable x 2

Accelerator cable

New exhaust (rear) x 2

Head gasket/skim (42'500 miles)

Cam Belt

Battery change

Clutch change.

Apart from the above, the car is great to drive, poky (for a 1.2 8v), comfortable, lots of headroom. Does that compensate for the repairs for a car that has done an average of 7'500 miles pa, regularly serviced? I don't think so!! Spookily enough, major faults tend to occur not long after services...?

I will update all once I have the baby back today or tomorrow.