The Fiat Sedici marks a veritable leap in the compact SUV scenario because it is the result of a style and design approach whose distinguishing feature is freedom of choice. The new model is a fusion of different vehicle types: it combines the driving satisfaction and handling features of a compact Fiat with the off-road performance of an SUV (Sport Utility Vehicle). Incidentally, the car's name says everything about its off-road proclivities: Sedici (sixteen) is what you get when you multiply 4x4 - the code used to identify four-wheel drive vehicles. Within the Suzuki-Fiat industrial project, the styling of Fiat 16 has been jointly done with Italdesign, Giorgetto Giugiaro's design Company.
These are the winning features of the new car that will be world-premiered when it is made available to the organisation of the Twentieth Winter Olympic Games, due to be held in Turin next February. The car's market launch will coincide with this sporting event.
The Fiat Sedici stands out from the herd of off-road cars due partly to certain stylistic features such as its innovatively designed tail-lights, its uniquely dynamic mid-line, its well-proportioned rump and the muscular bulk of its side inserts.
The new model is available in two specifications (Dynamic and Emotion) with two power units (107 bhp 1.6 16v and 120 bhp 1.9 Multijet) and reconciles apparently conflicting qualities: plenty of passenger room despite a compact size; the handling of a saloon with the off-road qualities of an SUV - and original exterior styling with interior design geared to maximum practicality. This means that the Fiat Sedici is the ideal solution for the motorist of today who inhabits a technological world where it is common for objects to serve more than one purpose. The car is now seen as a versatile product that can adapt to different activities: work, relaxation, culture and leisure time. The Fiat Sedici has thus been designed and built for drivers who wish to make a statement by driving a sophisticated car with elegant lines yet are also seeking a compact, easily handled, safe car that will slip through town traffic with ease.
The new Fiat model allows its customers to make the most of their free time, particularly if they love nature and wish to indulge their taste for adventure and challenge. The vehicle boasts an all-terrain look plus a special adaptable four wheel drive that allows the driver the freedom of changing from a 4x2 drive to a 4x4, thus ensuring this vehicle consumes less fuel than other off-road vehicles in the same category. And more, a Fiat Sedici equipped with the spirited 120 bhp 1.9 Multijet engine assures outstanding performance, travelling comfort and respect for the environment.
The Fiat Sedici simultaneously ensures thrills and driving satisfaction by carefully juggling style and sophisticated engineering. Its vigour arouses a zest for life while satisfying the desire to travel in complete freedom. Fiat wishes to play a leading role in the development of the SUV by offering an off-roader for all. This steadily growing market segment rose from a share of 1.7% in 1992 to the current level of 6% for the entire European on-road vehicle fleet. Back in 1992 the segment was made up of vehicles that were configured for out-and-out off-road driving but the original generation of off-road vehicles was later supplanted as a result of two events. The first occurred in 1994 with the arrival of the first compact SUVs combining the qualities of true 4x4 off-roaders with up-to-date and original design making them suitable for city driving. These were followed in 1997 by deluxe off-roaders: with their wealth of equipment and extremely generous dimensions, the ideal response for demanding, sophisticated customers in a continual quest for unique products with a strong personality.
Both subsegments, particularly the compact SUV subsegment, are now experiencing growing interest from the public and the scenario is changing quickly. The size and features of the Fiat Sedici slot it into the compact SUV category but it stands head and shoulders above the crowd for its absolutely elegant exterior styling and very appealing standard equipment package.Published 2 December 2005