Car video reviews:

2016 Fiat Tipo Hatchback First Spy Photos Show Future Golf Rival

After years of neglect, the Fiat brand is rising from the ashes with new models that are competitive and target Europe's most important segments. We already saw the Egea sedan at the Istanbul Motor Show, and now our spy photographers have sent us the first glimpses of the Tipo hatchback.
2016 Fiat Tipo Hatchback First Spy Photos 6 photos
2016 Fiat Tipo Hatchback First Spy Photos2016 Fiat Tipo Hatchback First Spy Photos2016 Fiat Tipo Hatchback First Spy Photos2016 Fiat Tipo Hatchback First Spy Photos2016 Fiat Tipo Hatchback First Spy Photos
Even though the test prototype is fully camouflaged, we don't see any mysteries here. The entire design is nearly identical to that of the Turkey-built sedan. By keeping the hood, fenders, wings and interior the same, Fiat is saving a lot of money. The compact class is very competitive, and profits are tight, so the cash-strapped Italians can't fool around.

The Tipo name - meaning “type” in Italian - was originally used by a small family vehicle built between 1988 and 1995 and available in 3- and 5-door forms. The revival model will be built in Turkey and compete with popular cars like the Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus.

In a way, this car will be a direct replacement for the current Fiat Bravo model. However, it will be cheaper and simpler. One good way to prove this is by looking at the engine range made up only of 1.3- and 1.6-liter diesels. The most powerful unit delivers 120 horsepower, which doesn't sound like a lot when compared to the 165 horsepower of a Bravo 2.0 Multijet.

Volume brands are increasingly steering away from large, powerful engines, choosing instead to target the buyers who want no frills. One other good example of this is the new Opel Astra, although the Skoda Rapid could also be a candidate. Fiat has even gone as far as to admit Dacia's business plan was very carefully studied.

The Tipo has been designed in Italy by the FCA Style Center, and most of the development work took place in Turkey with Tofa_ R&D. That's why we see the prototype in such an advanced stage of development.

Whether or not the Tipo can be successful remains to be seen. However, initial reactions to the sedan version have been positive. Expect to see this 5-door at the next Geneva Motor Show and in a dealership near you by around the fall of 2016.


Would you like AUTOEVOLUTION to send you notifications?

You will only receive our top stories