2003 Fiat Stilo Dynamic from UK and Ireland - Comments

22nd Apr 2009, 15:35

Hi, I bought a Fiat Stilo 1.2 Dynamic 52 reg in July 2007. Before that I had a Fiesta and Mazda 323f, and was not ready for problems. Though after reading these comments, mine doesn't seem too bad now.

As soon as I got it, I drove up and down country several times and got scared by it as it decided to lose power to the wipers, lights and heater, while traveling in winter whilst at night in the rain.

Also after fitting a stereo, which was fine in other cars, went to Butlins for a weekend for find the battery dead in the car park. It has been in and out of Fiat dealers til they have given up trying to find out how the car is losing electrical power. Had a diagnostics test, which cleared the history, but that didn't cure it, almost ending up crying about it cos I've just spent my savings on it. They said something about it's supposed to have two keys, and they must have touched each other to get problems, they couldn't detect any problems and said bring it back once it's gone wrong again. It must have heard them cos that was 2 years ago now and I haven't seen a Fiat dealer for a little while.

After few months I got used to the little things it does; it's like Herbie.

I have to drive it every 4 days or so or it's flat, and living in a city where public transport is better value, it's a bit annoying. I have to drive it to the centre.

I has a airbag failure that tells me to stop the engine, cos its the drivers airbag that comes up every now and then, and it can stay on from 1 day to 2 months, and stops the date updating etc. The dealer said it's OK to ignore it.

I have to take the fascia off the stereo or the car's flat in 2 days, even when the stereo's off.

You need the rev the hell out of it, but then it is a 1.2 that weighs approx a ton, so that doesn't really surprise me.

It an Irish import that is 2 years older than the registered date, and it's impossible to find on the insurance registers.

The steering wheel looks like it's turning left, and it seems to pull to the left until I do the pulling tests.

The handles do freeze, but it's the same as door sticking in frozen weather.

Had trouble at garage cos they didn't get rid of the service due message, and I had to get them to take it to Fiat to get it done.

Both my headlight bulbs went at same time randomly just minutes before I was supposed to drive 260 miles. And had to fit both bulbs in the dark, lucky wasn't the first time I had to do it, drivers side is a bit of squeeze but the passenger size almost carves up my hand and arm after feeding my arm though middle of engine.

The latest problem is I think gearbox oil is slowly leaking, cos the transmission has got more clunky and not so smooth. Also I can hear when I accelerate. Gonna use synthetic when I can afford it.

So now if I get a warning light, I just ignore it and wait til it goes away. I really like the gadgets, storage, comfyness, room, interior, colour, and overall style. I can act really flash in front my friends with all the snazzy stuff it does. But I don't think I could bring myself to buy another one.

4th Aug 2009, 17:56

I finally traded in my 2002, 1200 Active, mentioned in previous comments, for a C4. I was sorry to see her go as she gave me very good service for nearly 5 years and looked as good as the day I bought her, without a speck of rust anywhere.

Reading all the comments above goes to prove that no two cars are the same and a lot is down to the drivers.

I once bought a car, many years ago, that the previous owner wanted rid of because it had burned out three clutches in two years. I had the same car for three years on the same clutch.

So all you drivers having problems - take care of your car and it might take care of you.

PS Don't think I'm keeping this C4 very long.

28th Oct 2009, 15:42

How do I change the ignition coils (pencil type) on my Fiat Stilo 1.6 2004? When I undo the screw, does the coil just pull out?

30th Sep 2010, 14:28

I have had my Fiat Stilo (petrol) since 02 and not had any bother. 1 coil to be changed and 1 battery last winter. Good after 8 years. Still looks like new. Going to keep it for another while yet. It is great to drive,

20th Oct 2010, 18:12

I think this car was built with a whole book full of problems. So far I have wasted enough money on my 02 plate 16v 1.6 Stilo worth to buy me a Ferrari. It has spent most of its time in the garage & roadsides than on the road.

Bad Points:

Always leaking oil from unknown point.

Pulling to the left.

Always destroying the catalyst.

Constant engine management lights.

Airbag failure.

Vibrates at idle.

And the list goes on.

9th Nov 2010, 16:01

I have a 1.9 turbo JTD estate. Nice car, plenty of room, shame about the engine / electrics; can be driving down the road, and it just cuts out, no warning. Great when you are in traffic.

Thought I was losing my mind. Go outside at night, and the windows would be half way down. One day my lad was sat in it, and told me the windows went down on their own. Can't be him, I had the keys.

Last year it got recalled back in for the suspension; had cups attached, good job, 5 minutes down the road, about 1 month later, the near side spring collapsed.

Also the boot will not open. Had to take off the inside panel, so I can open the rear window, then open it by the catch inside.

1st Fiat I have bought. Will be the last.

26th Mar 2013, 17:12

Bought a 1.2 Stilo Active with 17" rims. Had a chewed gearbox, so replaced with another. Has been fine; no engine management lights, just air bag warning light, which is a dirty connector under the passenger seat. Easy fix: Use connector cleaner when disconnected (make sure the battery is off).

Rear bushes are whooped and it's knocking majorly, but that's just with time; they don't last forever.

And as for the cutting out randomly... make sure your earth wire on your gearbox is tight. That worked for me.

It runs nice, doesn't pull that much, but it's only a 1.2.

28th Jul 2013, 14:40

All you do is pull out the yellow tab, then pull off the connecter, unscrew the bolt holding the plastic cap on, and pull upwards, just make sure you don't drop anything inside if you take out the plugs.

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