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A brief look at the Fiat Doblo: Some pros and cons

First seen in 2000 at the Paris Motor Show, the Fiat Doblo is an MPV that is still in production today. Replacing the Fiat Fiorino, the Doblo is one of the few vehicles that still produce all its models despite the introduction of a new version. As such, the first-generation Doblo is still in production today alongside its second-generation counterpart which came out in 2010. An all-electric version of the Doblo called Doblo EV is also in the works though it has already been introduced to the media, dubbed as the first commercial electrical car to be developed in Turkey. To commemorate the production of the 1 millionth Doblo unit, the Doblo EV was test-driven by the press and Nihat Ergun, the Turkish Minister of Industry and Commerce.

Pros

The Fiat Doblo offers both petrol and diesel engine options to cover a varied range of needs. At the top of the range is a 2.0-litre diesel unit though most will feel comfortable with the 1.6-litre diesel units. For the entry-level spec, a Doblo is fitted with a 1.4-litre petrol engine. Whatever engine option you choose, the Doblo offers good control though it is appears to be bulky, doing very well even on demanding road conditions.

One of the things that the Doblo has going for it is that it is reasonably priced given its size. Yes, opting for an entry-level spec will near give you just the bare necessities (remote locking, electric front windows, and a CD player) but if you need to work with a budget it will do nicely. If you choose a diesel engine, running costs will also be more manageable because of the fuel efficiency it offers.

The Doblo’s height also ensures there’s lots of headroom, making it ideal for carrying taller passengers and moving around tall items. This also allows the vehicle to utilize a deep boot where even more luggage space can be used, complemented by a flat cabin floor at the back to keep items in place. Should additional space be needed, seats may also be removed as needed. Sliding doors make it easy to get in and out of the Doblo too while the big tailgate guarantees that your luggage will remain where you placed them.

Cons

The Fiat Doblo offers a relatively smooth ride but the noise it makes under the hood when it starts working harder can’t be ignored. It’s like the structure of the Doblo even amplifies the noise and makes it echo throughout the vehicle. On top of engine noise, suspension woes are also audible when you hit big bumps on the road.

The Doblo is tough so you can pretty much bring it anywhere. Unfortunately, this durability extends inside so don’t expect plush materials for the cabin. Fiat does somehow soften the effect when you’re inside the Doblo by offering a smart centre console with switchgears typical of a Fiat. All controls and functions are also user-friendly, which some people may deem to be too simple to be considered a value for a car.

What do you think?

(Average rating: 5 , Total rates: 3 )

A History of the Fiat Doblo

The Fiat Doblo is a panel van and mini multi-purpose vehicle first released at the 2000 Paris Motor Show. This was manufactured by Italian automaker Fiat and first launched in the Netherlands. Reception was optimistic during the Doblo’s first few years, and the Doblo continues to enjoy healthy sales all over the world.

The Doblo has had a lot of local editions in many countries in the course of its production. In Singapore, the Doblo is marketed as the Fiat Panorama and comes in 5- and 7-seater versions. In North Korea, the Doblo is known and marketed as the Ppeokkugi under Pyonghwa Motors. Brazilian Doblos meanwhile come in various engines, with a 4x2 off-road edition called the Fiat Doblo Adventure hitting the market in 2003. The latest model is a rebadged Adventure Locker with a fire flex engine and styled in a European flair.

The first generation Doblo has been named International Van of the Year in 2006 by a jury comprising 16 countries. The same generation also gave rise to an electric version with the help of Micro-Vett S.p.A.

The second generation Doblo is exclusively manufactured by the Turkish automaker Tofaş. An electric version was also explored by the Turkish company, and was announced in 2010.

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