It is a very enjoyable little car to drive, uncomplicated and zestful.
Ride and Handling
The Panda has a short wheelbase and the wheels right out at the corners, with very short body overhangs. This gives it a squat stance on the road despite its slightly elevated body. It is a very enjoyable little car to drive, uncomplicated and zestful. Compared with the previous model, it feels like it has grown up a little and gained a touch more agility. The handling is tidy without undue roll on the bends. Compared with the old model, the ride is a little more cushioned and absorbent.
Ease of Use
For its exterior dimensions – 3,653 mm in length and 1,880 mm wide - the Panda feels quite roomy inside. The cabin is by no means lavish, but it is quite adequately equipped for a car in this class. All the materials are good quality and quite tastefully chosen, although they do have more an air much more of serviceability than of luxury. All the switches and controls are quite chunky to handle, but they operate with slick enough efficiency. With this new model Panda, Fiat has increased the provision of stowage places around the car’s interior. They now total 14 separate locations, and include a large dished area set into the dashboard, and neat little containers on the doors to hold a mobile phone or other small items that you might want to keep handy.
Like most cars of this size, the Panda has quite a small boot, although it is actually 25 litres larger than a rival Kia Picanto, for example. Fold the back seats, and the car’s carrying capacity increases to 870 litres.
With good fuel economy and quite low CO2, the Panda’s running costs ought to be pretty reasonable. The servicing intervals are every 12,000 miles or once a year, shorter than for most other Fiats, but still quite acceptable.