The Fiat Qubo is related closely to the Citroen Nemo and Peugeot Bipper. All three are derived from vans, but are surprisingly car-like to drive
What is it?
This is Fiat’s latest boxy MPV, the Fiat Qubo 1.4 Dynamic. It’s Fiat’s most recent attempt to sell its MPVs to a younger, funkier market and the Fiat Qubo 1.4 Dynamic underlines the Italian maker’s obsession with trying to make boxy cars cool (see Panda and Multipla for details).
What’s it like?
The Fiat Qubo is impressive and distinctive. But it isn’t the Fiat Qubo’s looks that make it stand out in such a niche market segment, nor is it the twin sliding doors and ample load space. Rather it is The Qubo’s mild, relaxing road manners that mark it out.
The Punto platform ensures the Fiat Qubo returns a decent level of feedback in the corners, with agile steering for a car of this type. The 1.4-litre petrol engine pulls well through the lower gears, making the 0-62mph time of 16.2sec seem pessimistic.
The modest torque, just 87lb ft at 2600rpm, causes the Qubo to labour at times, the car suffering particularly on inclines and when switching motorway lanes. However, the ride is comfortable and, although not the most economical option – you’ll have to choose the 1.3-litre Multijet diesel for that – the 1.4 still manages to return almost 40mpg at a steady motorway cruise.
The Fiat Qubo is available in two trim levels, which differ only slightly. The £1400 Dynamic trim adds 16-inch alloys, climate control and roof bars, all of which can be added separately.
There are no carpets, but you do get supportive seats, simple dials and a thoughtfully ergonomic steering wheel, all of which help enhance the Qubo’s best feature, its lofty driving position – which helps provide excellent forward visibility.
Should I buy one?
If you’re looking for a versatile small MPV, the Fiat Qubo’s diminutive dimensions, impressive capacity and decent handling make it a fine choice – in petrol or diesel form.