Quirkiness and novelty value give the Ypsilon a bit of special cachet for those who like the way it looks. Don’t consider one of these if you are a keen driver looking for a dynamically accomplished car.
Comfort and Refinement
Refinement is quite reasonable if you drive the Ypsilon modestly, but it tends to be a bit noisy if you are heavier on the right-hand pedal. The Ypsilon’s oddball design on the outside carries over inside with a similar quirkiness in the cabin. There is a slightly strange empty void straight ahead beyond the steering wheel, as you sit in the driving seat. Bizarrely, all the dials are in a central location, in the middle of the dash. This is slightly awkward when you are trying to keep a wary eye on the speed. Presumably it was done for cost reasons, because it means that the dash panel is interchangeable for left or right-hand-drive. The gear lever is not in the conventional place, it protrudes from the lower part of the dash at waist level. The overall look of the interior is reasonably contemporary, but we’re not keen on the big swathes of dark-coloured, rather cheap-looking plastics.
Safety and Security
Six airbags are standard across the range, and all models have automatic activation of hazard warning lights in an emergency. The seatbelts have pre-tensioners and load limiters. Dynamic stability control and a hill holder function are optional.
Standard kit on this SE model, which is mid-range spec for the car but base level for a diesel engine Ypsilon, includes electric front windows and door mirrors, air conditioning, height adjustable driving seat and steering wheel, a gear shift indicator, ambient lighting, radio-CD player with MP3 connectivity and a split- fold rear seat. Sound quality from the stereo unit is reasonable. The dual-colour paintwork on our test car is an optional extra at £600. It is not to all tastes, but it seems to suit the somewhat chintzy design of the Ypsilon. The Fiat group’s Blue&Me interactive infotainment system is optionally available, and you can have a TomTom satnav tailored to the car.
- Ford Fiesta
- Vauxhall Corsa
- Volkswagen Polo
- Kia Rio
What We Liked
- Fair performance
- Striking, look-at-me design
- Interesting paint options
- Unusual cabin design, a bit different from the norm
- You don’t see too many others on the road
- Steering load is adjustable for town or country driving
- Self-parking system optional
What We Disliked
- Not as good to drive as the best of its rivals
- Marmite looks
- Too much cheap-looking plastic in the cabin
- It’s a Lancia, why try to pass it off as a Chrysler?
What We Would Like To See
- Honesty. Lancia badges on UK Ypsilons. Don’t pretend it’s something it’s not.
Quirkiness and novelty value give the Ypsilon a bit of special cachet for those who like the way it looks. Don’t consider one of these if you are a keen driver looking for a dynamically accomplished car. But if you’re not a particularly demanding driver and you want a budget hatchback with reasonable room and a bit of character, have a look at this Chrysler-badged Lancia. If you like Marmite, that is.24 September 2012
Chrysler Ypsilon Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Chrysler Ypsilon 1.3 MultiJet SE|
|Body Type||5-door Hatchback|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||11.0 Seconds|
|Top Speed||114 mph|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||88.3 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating|
|Warranty||3 Years / 60,000 miles|
|Price (when tested on the 24/09/12)||£14,195|