Engines And Transmissions
The new Fiat Panda goes on sale in the UK with a choice of two refined and economical petrol engines; (1.1 litre 8-valve, 54 bhp, and 1.2 litre 8-valve, 60 bhp). Both these reliable, proven FIRE engines will be augmented by Fiat Auto’s new, state-of-the-art 1.3 litre 16-valve 70 bhp MultiJet turbodiesel this summer.
Both petrol engines are mated to 5-speed manual gearboxes. Dualogic – a clutchless, 5-speed sequential manual shift with a selectable fully automatic mode – is offered as an option on all 1.2 litre 8-valve models.
1.2 8v FIRE
- 1242 cc
- 4-cylinders, 8 valves
- Power: 60 bhp @ 5000 rpm
- Torque: 75 lb.ft @ 2500 rpm
- Top speed: 96 mph
- Acceleration 0-62 mph: 14.0 seconds
- Fuel consumption: In Town: 39.8 mpg Out of town: 58.9 mpg Combined: 50.4 mpg
- CO2: 133 g/km
1.1 8v FIRE
- 1108 cc
- 4-cylinders, 8 valves
- Power: 54 bhp @ 5000 rpm
- Torque: 65 lb.ft @ 2750 rpm
- Top speed: 93 mph
- Acceleration 0-62 mph: 15.0 seconds
- Fuel consumption: In town: 39.2 mpg Out of town: 58.9 mpg Combined: 49.6 mpg
- CO2: 135 g/km
The 5-speed manual gearbox available in the new Panda range can transmit torque of up to 14.8 kgm (107 lb.ft), and features a dual cable external control that filters engine vibrations transmitted to the dashboard mounted gear lever, offering outstanding selection manoeuvrability.
The gear casings, developed using finite element structural computing methods, are light yet display high noise absorption efficiency. Fifth speed and final drive gear sets are machined to a superfinish after heat treatment, to further reduce noise levels. The clutch is hydraulic to promote ease of use, efficiency and low running noise. The new Panda 5-speed manual gearbox is also equipped with a syringe mechanism to prevent involuntary reverse engagement.
Dualogic clutchless transmission is available with the 1.2 litre 8-valve engine. This innovative transmission system features a servo automated clutch and gear lever, while retaining all the attributes of a dry clutch and manual gearbox; low weight, strength, reliability and fuel economy.
Two operating modes are selectable; semi-automatic and automatic. In the absence of a clutch pedal, fast, accurate gear changing in semi-automatic mode simply requires the movement of the lever forward to change up, and back to change down.
Once the new Panda has been started, brake pedal pressure allows the selection of either first or reverse gear (second gear may be selected to aid traction in slippery conditions). To ensure safety and prevent unsolicited gear changes, the system automatically engages neutral when the engine is still running and the door is opened. Dualogic also prevents gear changing errors that risk damage to engine or transmission, reinforced with both visual and aural alarms.
In fully automatic mode, Dualogic offers two options: Normal and Economy. The Normal option offers outstanding driving comfort through the smoothest gearchanges under all conditions. Pressing the Economy button on the gear control panel offers reduced fuel consumption through lower RPM gearchange points, while maintaining first class driving comfort.
The Dualogic system offers an ideal compromise for those who prefer an automatic gearbox for day-to-day use, but do not wish to relinquish the driver involvement and satisfaction of a manual change.
Allied to an all-new platform and a bodyshell of exceptional torsional stiffness – 70,500 da Nm/rad – the new Fiat Panda employs an independent MacPherson strut front suspension configuration, and a lightweight torsion beam axle at the rear, to offer a level of driving precision, roadholding and ride comfort more usually associated with cars of a much higher segment.
The front suspension features a torsion bar connected by rods to the dampers (a first in this category), new design coil springs that increase the absorption of minor surface roughness, and wishbones with both front bushes and new vertical rear bushes of combined rubber and metal.
The new bushes contain an increased percentage of rubber, offering an excellent compromise between vibration suppression and road adhesion.
The rear suspension configuration combines a folded sheet steel torsion beam with double acting telescopic hydraulic dampers located beneath the floor to improve comfort without compromising load space.
Single rubber and metal bush attachments of the rear axle to the body further lower noise and vibration intrusion into the passenger compartment, while promoting greater driving stability under all conditions by generating a wheel toe-in effect during cornering.Published 12 January 2004