Fiat 500 Barbie Concept

fiat-500-barbie-edition

fiat-500-barbie-edition

Fiat 500 makes headlines once more, as befits an authentic Made in Italy icon. This time it’s an original Fiat 500 Barbie show car dedicated to the most famous fashion doll ever: Barbie®. This exceptional vehicle, created by a partnership between the Fiat Centro Stile and Mattel, will be given officially to Barbie® on 9 March next, at her fiftieth birthday celebrations in Milan.

It’s a fashionista car but quite tongue-in-cheek and with lots of charm: just like Barbie® herself. The gleaming paintwork resembles varnish and definitely makes for a shock effect, achieved with deep lacquered colour using ultra fine aluminium plunged in deep, up-to-the-minute pink. The seating is upholstered in strikingly soft fabrics: silver laminated Alcantara® is not only trendy but plush to the touch and its glimmer bounces as far as the roof panel. Then there are mats enhanced with natural silk yarn and sleek viscose, not to mention lip glosses in brilliant colours stored in the glove compartment, plus a LED-decked vanity mirror to ensure perfect application. And there’s more. The car has more features than a crown has jewels! Crystals sparkle on interior bezels, hubcaps, outer window mouldings and antenna and even outline the doll’s famed silhouette on the pillars. Lastly, this Fiat 500 Barbie show car also has its own glossy cover, featuring the distinctive Sixties version of the Fiat 500 and a Barbie® autograph.

The latest Fiat 500 Barbie show car will appear in public for the first time on Monday 9 March, when it will race through the quintessential streets of Milan’s fashion district. Barbie® will be aboard and she’ll have her own special driver: Ken, of course. On arriving at the entrance to La Rinascente department store, in Piazza Duomo, Barbie® will leave the car and walk the unique pink carpet created just for her. The band Nena will be playing live in the background, reviving some of the most famous pop songs from the fifty years of the legendary fashion doll’s existence.

Roberto Giolito, creator of the Fiat 500, had this to say about the Mattel-Fiat partnership scheme: “All-American Ms Barbie® already has a number of ‘transport solutions’ available, like thundering GTs and motor homes with endless accessories. So if she’s spotted a 500 and wants one as a gift for this landmark birthday, it’s a signal typical of modern times that there’s a renewed need for dreaming the simple things in life, which give so much, allow us to lighten up, thrill who’s born beautiful or just feels beautiful, but doesn’t have to prove anything. After all, Barbie® already has everything. Sleek Barbie® is a looker, smart enough to listen to everyone, a universal ambassador opting for a car that never divides but frees everyone from having to declare their social status. The new 2009 version celebrates her birthday with a model that offers a better view of the sun and the stars, all the better for continuing to dream, especially daydreams.

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Fiat Fiorino Qubo

Fiat-fiorino-qubo

Fiat-fiorino-qubo

Fiat Fiorino Qubo is the name of the new vehicle being sold by the FIAT sales network. An original name that plays on the idea of “cube”, which may not always be complimentary in all contexts, but in any case clearly evokes the strong points of this model: reliability and sturdiness, as well as unique and versatile functions. Not to mention the originality of changing the C of cube to Q to tell us that this vehicle is no ordinary cube, but rather a cube with a twist.

The Fiat Fiorino Qubo is targeted at a client who is a non-conformist oriented towards substance rather than show, a strong personality who is emanates confidence of his or her own well-informed choices.

Fiat Fiorino Qubo goes well beyond the concept of the MPV to venture as a pioneer into the concept of a “free space” vehicle, capable of satisfying a variety of needs for mobility. In fact, it is a highly functional vehicle with two sliding rear side doors, flexible interiors capable of offering up to sixteen different solutions. If so desired, it is also available with a front passenger seat that can be folded into a table and then flush with the boot level, making it possible to load objects measuring nearly 2.5 metres (a true record for a vehicle that measure only 3.9 metres).

So this is the vehicle that lets you do anything you like, just as one would expect from a multipurpose vehicle, because it is as easy to handle as a city car and as spacious and comfortable as a MPV. But when compared to an MPV, the price is better for the same versatility and more compact dimensions (3959 mm long and 1684 mm wide, this boasts the best maximum capacity boot among all the vehicles in its class).

// // Moreover, Fiat Fiorino Qubo fits in anywhere (urban and suburban), ensuring notable fuel savings -thanks to the 1.3 Multijet 75 hp engine, also available with the robotized “Dual Logic” six-speed transmission – which all translates into 1000 km of autonomy and reduced operating costs (30,000 km for the first service check).

All in all, this vehicle is also about as green as can be, reducing CO2 emissions to 119 g/km with the 1.3 Multijet engine and offering an optional particulate filter.

But that’s not all; Fiat Fiorino Qubo manages to offer all this and at a highly competitive price, in keeping with other segment B vehicles, while including an integrated Blue&Me communications system (hands free, vocal and steering wheel commands, on-board text messaging, and a USB port).

Sales began in France in June 2008 and will continue over the summer months in Austria and Hungary. Italy, Poland, Switzerland, and Spain were next, while an October arrival is slated for Germany, Holland, Ireland, and November for Belgium and Greece (For 2009, Great Britain and Denmark should conclude the cycle).

Distinctive exterior styling and new-concept interiors

Essential and rational, the exterior styling of the Fiat Fiorino Qubo also sets itself apart for the specific side and rear body treatments that pump up its muscular personality. In the same way, not even the bold and rugged good-looks of the front can compromise the overall impression of a “unconventional yet likeable” vehicle, just as its solid appearance and “four wheels on the ground” attitude are counterbalanced by the fluid and clean lines that ooze dynamism.

These aesthetic peculiarities are in keeping with the compact exterior dimensions – 3.96 metres long, 1.72 metres tall, and 1.68 metres wide – which when united with a steering diameter of less than 10 metres, allows the new Fiat Fiorino Qubo to negotiate narrow downtown streets or the metropolitan traffic slaloms, becoming a new ingenious alternative to the city car and compact MPVs alike.

In more detail, the sturdy front bumper matches the body colour, protectively hugging the more delicate zones – headlights, bonnet, and radiator – especially against low-speed impact. The same sense of security is provided by the body side molding that allows the driver to manoeuvre in total confidence, even in tight spots, and by the matching wing rear-view mirrors that guarantee excellent visibility by reducing blind spots to a minimum. Plenty of glass on the doors and the ample windscreen (the front pillars have also been minimized) further increase what is already extraordinary visibility. Even the side glass creates an original visual effect that, combined with the lines drawn in correspondence to the mudguards, streamlines the entire side.

The rear hatchback lends a sophisticated design, bejewelled as it is with the central logo and stylized window, giving this vehicle something to shout about.

The overall charm of the Fiat Fiorino Qubo is further punctuated by the front and rear lights – characterised with transparencies and chromium plating, mounted high to protect them from eventual impact – and the front and rear doors, the latter of which are always sliding and feature plenty of glass to increase passenger comfort and functionality. Finally, the client can choose from among ten body colours and two types of interiors.

But enough about the outside. It’s inside where the new Fiat Fiorino Qubo really struts its stuff. Thanks to an original concept – denominated “free space” – that combines different seat arrangements (for a total of sixteen) through the rationality and regularity of the interior spaces. The result is an exceptionally exploitable space for volume and flexibility: for example, with seats in a normal position, the boot measures 330 litres (up to the height of the boot panel) and 650 litres if measured to the roof. Instead, if the rear seats are removed and the front passenger folded down to the floor, the load capacity amounts to 2,500 litres (best in class) and a boot capable of holding objects nearly 2.5 metres long (a real record, if we consider that the vehicle measures a total of 3.9 metres in length).

The Fiat Fiorino Qubo seat represent the soul of the “free space” concept”: In fact, the alternative to the standard front passenger seat may be a specially designed seat that, when folded up with a simple gesture, can “disappear” into floor at boot level (while in an intermediate position it may function as a convenient table top!). Furthermore, the rear seats are available in 1/3 and 2/3 configurations, and can be folded or removed (completely or partially) thereby offering surprising load capacity and versatility.

So much for space and flexibility, but Fiat Fiorino Qubo is also a comfortable vehicle for all effects and purposes, as demonstrated by the symmetrical and modular T-shaped dashboard that serves up all the commands and a variety of instrumentation at the driver’s fingertips. But comfort on board also means storage space: so this is where the central console steps in to offer open organisational capacity. Plenty of space at the base of the transmission command on the dashboard, thanks to the roomy glove compartment. Even the door panels were studied to offer storage and a comfortable armrest. Moreover, the central tunnel also offers practical open storage compartments.

Finally, the boot is wonderfully and evenly spacious (972 mm wide, 737 mm deep, 545 mm height under the boot panel) with direct access to the loading level, while the rigid boot panel demonstrates it collaborative nature by “disappearing” easily in the space between the backrests and the wheelbox.

Progressive engines and reliable transmissions

Driving comfort also means being able to count on high-performance yet progressive engines together with strong and reliable transmissions. For this reason Fiat Fiorino Qubo comes in two Euro 4 versions – the sparky 1.3, 75 hp Multijet and the reliable 1.4, 73 hp petrol – which stand out for driving pleasure, excellent performance, and reduced operating costs, as well as for their reliability and respect for the environment.

The new Fiat Fiorino Qubo just had to have a 1.3 16v Multijet, the smallest and most advanced “Common Rail” direct injection diesel engine of the second generation produced by FPT – FIAT Powertrain Technologies – in the Polish plant in Bielsko-Biala. This version is combined with a manual, 5-speed or with a robotized 6-speed, “Dual Logic” transmission with sequential or automatic functions and an Economy button to optimise running with a view to reducing fuel consumption. The turbo diesel produces a hefty 75 hp (55 kW at 4000 rpm) of maximum power and a torque of 19.4 kgm (190 Nm at 1750 rpm), guaranteeing excellent performance and the best consumption figures in its class: for example, maximum speed is 155 kph while, in the combined cycle it records 4.6 l/100 km (4.5 l/100 km with the robotized transmission), which means about 1000 kilometres with a fill-up of 45 litres of diesel fuel.

Furthermore, a Fiat Fiorino Qubo with this engine is an eco-friendly vehicle – some versions have CO2 values of less than 120 g/km – and if equipped with the particulate filter (optional), it can reach particle emissions of 0.005 g/km (in conformity with Euro 5 ratings).

Performance of the 73 hp 1.4 8v is just as good, having been specially developed with a view to performance and consumption. The engine supplies 73 hp (54 kW) at 5200 rpm and a maximum torque of 12 kgm (118 Nm) at 2600 rpm. Then, combined with a mechanical 5-speed transmission, the engine is peppy (maximum speed is 155 km/h) but thrifty, consuming 7.0 l/100 km in the combined cycle.

A specific solution for every request

Born in the setting of industrial cooperation between FIAT and PSA and developed on the Fiat Grande Punto platform, Fiat Fiorino Qubo is produced in the Tofas plant in Bursa (Turkey)- where the Fiat Doblò is also produced – as a spin-off of a simple yet revolutionary concept: Fiat Fiorino Qubo is offered in a wide yet articulate range where everyone can find the ideal solution to meet his lifestyle and way of using an automobile.

The 5-passenger model is available in two versions: the first (Active) is more basic and informal, while the second (Dynamic) is richer and more complete. Whichever he chooses, the client can always count on a decidedly enticing package. In fact, depending on the market and versions, important contents will be available: for example, safety equipment will include ABS complete with EBD, 3-point seat belts with tensioners and load limiters, power steering, and front and side airbags.

Finally, the client can customise his Fiat Fiorino Qubo with a number of optionals: elegant 16″ alloy rims, parking sensors, longitudinal bars in aluminium, climate control, leather steering wheel and transmission knob with Blue&Me system commands for phoning, listening to text-messages, connecting a media player. Everything is always perfectly complementary and never distracts the driver from the road, thanks to Bluetooth® technology, vocal recognition, and the presence of the USB port.

Fiat could bring Alfa sex appeal to Ontario factory

Alfa RomeoChrysler LLC will build its upcoming Alfa Romeo 169 sports sedan at its Brampton, Ont. assembly plant, according to a projection by research firm IHS Global Insight Inc. It would mark the first time a high-end European luxury car will be made in Canada.

Chrysler and its commercial partner Fiat SpA will produce the yet-to-be-unveiled Alfa starting in November 2011, analysts for Global Insight said in a forecast report published on its website. The car will share the same basic underpinnings as Chrysler’s rear-wheel drive Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger models, the report said. Auto industry trade blogs have pegged its price at 40,000 euros ($62,000).

Fiat, the Italian automaker headed by Canadian Sergio Marchionne, steered Chrysler out of bankruptcy protection Wednesday, giving it a new lease on life after a US$16.8-billion loss last year. Fiat will own 20% of Chrysler initially and ramp up its stake over time, using Chrysler’s underused North American plants to build its Fiat and Alfa Romeo cars while contributing small vehicle technology to Chrysler’s own models.

Sports cars, especially more upscale European brands, “have a kind of panache” and building one would carry a certain prestige for Canada, said Doug Leighton, an automotive historian at the University of Western Ontario’s Huron College. “It may also have tax advantages for Fiat in the North American market.”

Chrysler spokesperson Mary Gauthier said Thursday the company is still reviewing production plans and no final decisions on building Fiat vehicles in Canada have been made. Mike Jackson, director of North American product forecasting for rival consultancy CSM Worldwide, said he doesn’t see Fiat building any models in Canada.

The Canadian and Ontario governments are supporting Chrysler with $3.8-billion in public aid and have received a roughly 2% share in the revamped automaker. One of the conditions of the loans is that the company maintain 20% of its production in Canada.

The Alfa 169 would likely be a low-volume model with annual production estimated at 10,000 units maximum.

Almost immediately after receiving final legal approval of its purchase of Chrysler this week, Fiat announced a management and structural shakeup at the American automaker that will see several senior Chrysler executives leave the company. Jim Press, formerly vice-chairman and president of Chrysler, was named deputy CEO to Mr. Marchionne. Global Insight said its sources indicate Mr. Press will oversee day-to-day operations at Chrysler while Mr. Marchionne divides his time between Italy and the United States.

Chrysler itself will be organized into its four distinct brand channels, each responsible for their own profit and loss statements.

“The sweeping management changes are stunning in their breadth and depth, essentially creating an entirely new management structure out of the old Chrysler,” Global Insight said in an analysis Thursday. “This is likely to be a positive thing.”

The consultancy’s report details no other new vehicles for Chrysler’s two Canadian plants. Fiat will build its award-winning 500 subcompact at Chrysler’s Toluca, Mexico plant, the report said.

Chrysler dealers filed an appeal of the bankrupt company’s sale to Fiat Thursday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York, Bloomberg reported.

The developments came as Ford Motor Co. called a meeting for Friday with the Canadian Auto Workers union to discuss labour costs. Ford says its Canadian plants are now at a competitive disadvantage against Chrysler and General Motors Corp. facilities after its rivals secured new labour contracts with the union that offered concessions.

New Alfa Romeo 149 Spied Winter Testing

2010-alfa-romeo-149

Alfa Romeo will replace its ging 147 hatchback with two seperate models. The 3-door version is being replaced by a little sport-hatch known as the Junior, of which we’ve seen spy shots. The 5-door will be replaced by an entirely different model, likely to be labeled 149, but this is the first time we’ve seen it.
While the 3-door will be based on the Fiat Grande Punto, the 149 shares its platform with the larger Fiat Bravo. The car in the spy shot is wearing mostly Bravo bodywork, but a sharp eye will notice the trademark Alfa grille up front. Engine options will likely include a range of Fiat Group powerplants from the T-Jet and M-Jet series, and could include a 265-hp V6 for the GTA version.
The 149 will hit European markets with a €20 000 base price sometime in mid 2009 after the Junior becomes available this coming October.

Alfa Romeo will replace its ging 147 hatchback with two seperate models. The 3-door version is being replaced by a little sport-hatch known as the Junior, of which we’ve seen spy shots. The 5-door will be replaced by an entirely different model, likely to be labeled 149, but this is the first time we’ve seen it.

While the 3-door will be based on the Fiat Grande Punto, the 149 shares its platform with the larger Fiat Bravo. The car in the spy shot is wearing mostly Bravo bodywork, but a sharp eye will notice the trademark Alfa grille up front. Engine options will likely include a range of Fiat Group powerplants from the T-Jet and M-Jet series, and could include a 265-hp V6 for the GTA version.

The 149 will hit European markets with a €20 000 base price sometime in mid 2009 after the Junior becomes available this coming October.

Geneva Preview: Fiat 500 cabrio Convertible

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Fiat plans to unveil a convertible version of its popular 500 micro-car at Geneva in March. And in keeping with the city car’s retro design, it will have a similar roof mechanism to the original 500’s. The car will use a full-length fabric roof that slides back to store on top of the parcel shelf. It will retain a glass rear window, plus full-frame doors and the hatch’s roofline.
The automaker also plans unveil the 500 Abarth SS in Geneva to challenge the Cooper S. This has a 1.4-litre turbo engine which delivers 155bhp. Expect these new versions of the 500 to arrive in dealerships by the end of the year.

Fiat plans to unveil a convertible version of its popular 500 micro-car at Geneva in March. And in keeping with the city car’s retro design, it will have a similar roof mechanism to the original 500’s. The car will use a full-length fabric roof that slides back to store on top of the parcel shelf. It will retain a glass rear window, plus full-frame doors and the hatch’s roofline.

The automaker also plans unveil the 500 Abarth SS in Geneva to challenge the Cooper S. This has a 1.4-litre turbo engine which delivers 155bhp. Expect these new versions of the 500 to arrive in dealerships by the end of the year.

Fiat 500 Abarth

500abarth1_lo

Fiat has just released the first official pictures of the Abarth version of its popular 500 mini hatch. The pictures show the 500 with a full bodykit consisting of a new front spoiler, side skirts, and rear bumper with a diffuser. Black, Scorpion-emblazoned 5-spoke wheels with silver and red accents complete the hot hatch’s design while the Abarth shield adorns the nose, rear quarters, and hatchback lid. Flashes of red make their way onto the rearview mirrors, brake calipers, and side stripes, too. Inside, the leaked cutaway drawing shows us read seats with matching door panel inserts.
The 1.4-liter gas engine gets a turbo to bump the power from 100 bhp to 155 bhp at 5500 rpm. That 55% increase in power pushes the 0-to-62 mph time down to 8.2 seconds.
The hot hatch will likely be one of the stars of the show when the doors are opened in Geneva.

Fiat has just released the first official pictures of the Abarth version of its popular 500 mini hatch. The pictures show the 500 with a full bodykit consisting of a new front spoiler, side skirts, and rear bumper with a diffuser. Black, Scorpion-emblazoned 5-spoke wheels with silver and red accents complete the hot hatch’s design while the Abarth shield adorns the nose, rear quarters, and hatchback lid. Flashes of red make their way onto the rearview mirrors, brake calipers, and side stripes, too. Inside, the leaked cutaway drawing shows us read seats with matching door panel inserts.

The 1.4-liter gas engine gets a turbo to bump the power from 100 bhp to 155 bhp at 5500 rpm. That 55% increase in power pushes the 0-to-62 mph time down to 8.2 seconds.

The hot hatch will likely be one of the stars of the show when the doors are opened in Geneva.

Fiat Launches the Fiat Punto Grande in India

punto 2The car will be jointly produced with Tata Motors and is very reasonably priced between Rs 3.99 lakh and Rs 6.11 lakh rupees. The petrol versions will have 1.2L and 1.4L engines, while the diesel variant has a 1.3L multijet diesel engine. The launch also follows close on the heels of the launch of the Honda Jazz in India. Evidently small is in, and car manufacturers are prepping for the Tata Nano’s arrival in stores.

The Fiat Punto Grande is a 2005 model and was announced at the India Auto Expo in New Delhi in January 2009. Fiat’s premium model, the Fiat Linea has been selling well in India. The car has a high safety rating in European tests, and conforms to the Euro IV emission standards. It bears a Straight-4 engine, in which all four cylinders in the internal combustion engine are mounted in a straight line on the crankshaft, making it cheaper to manufacture and well-suited for small cars. Unfortunately, it also leads to noise and vibrations in smaller cars as the cylinders are not well-balanced, without a more complex design. By Fiat’s announcement, the expected mileage is 22.3kpl for the 90bhp and 21.2kpl for the 75bhp engine.

“The launch of Grande Punto marks a new milestone for Fiat in India as we bring the quintessentially Italian designs to Indian shores,” Fiat India official said