Fiat’s all new Panda 4×4 is all set to make its debut at the coming International Paris Motor Show. The vehicle is the successor to the best-selling model that appeared about 30 years ago. The new third generation version is the perfect blend of off-road capabilities and refined design with compact efficient architecture.
With the 4×4 feature, it performs as well off-road as on the urban tracks. In addition to the standard equipment and design, the Panda is also able to match the other off-road cars with much higher dimensions and prices.
Style and Dimensions
The car measures about 368cm in length and 167 cm in width with a height of 160 cm and it comes with five doors. The wheelbase is about 230 cm long. The vehicle is equipped with front 141 cm track and rear track of about 140cm. The looks have been extensively characterized by the geometric lines of rear and front bumpers with aluminum colored décor inserts to show the presence of metallic protective layer underneath. Unlike the previous version, the tailpipe now runs seamlessly along the body lines to ensure that the lower parts are completely protected. The two tone body enhances and complements the looks of the new Panda 4×4, Sicilia orange and Toscana green.
The interiors remind one of the 4×2 version with some important innovations incorporated within its framework. A new green fascia is covering the instruments and it also includes a large storage pocket, fabric seats with three colour design and eco leather details at front and rear door panels. It also features a high console over the central tunnel, which adds another storage unit to the 14 already present in the 4×2 version.
The Panda 4×4 is equipped with Torque on Demand transmission system with 2 differentials and electronically controlled coupling. This technology allows it to maintain a permanent 4-wheel drive system through an electronically controlled unit, which analyses the control signals and distributes the traction on the front and rear axle uniformly and proportionally according to the prevailing conditions.
The new Panda 4×4 will be available in 2 engine versions both with Start and stop – one will be the 75bhp 1.3 liter Multijet II diesel and another being the 85bhp 0.9 TwinAir Turbo. With reference to the 1.2 Fire that came with the previous version TwinAir inherits about 40% more torque. This happens in combination with the 6-speed gearbox with low range gear giving better start, uphill performance, quality starting and pickup. The similar can be found in the multijet diesel engine were the torque was increased by 30%.
The suspension system of the all-wheel drive has to perform two main tasks – first is to ensure all 2-wheel drive like features such as passenger comfort, handling, road safety etc. and at the same time it must provide better characteristic performance over any type of terrain particularly off-road. Engineers have worked their way to meet both these parameters. Panda has been able to reach absolute excellence both in terms ofcomfortability and unique off-road capabilities. To achieve both the objectives, the vehicle was equipped with MacPherson arrangement in the front and interconnected wheel with torsion beam layout at the rear part. These both systems were specially developed and configured for four-wheel drive. In comparison to the semi-trailing arm solution of the previous generation the rear suspension is now much lighter and helps in providing better ride quality and acoustic comfort with the same off-road performance.