Review: Fiat Punto Van (2007 – 2014)

Rating:

Tight turning circle and compact dimensions makes it ideal for town, cheap to run with economical MultiJet diesel engine.

Not as accomplished as the Ford Fiesta Van, interior doesn't feel very durable.

Recently Added To This Review

23 April 2012 The revised Punto Van is unveiled

This 'replaces' the Grande Punto Van in the Fiat Professional line-up and brings a host of improvements over its predecessor, providing customers with a strong proposition in the car-derived van market,... Read more

1 September 2007 New Fiat Punto Van goes on sale

Powered by Fiat’s dependable 75PS 1.3-litre 16v MultiJet engine, a 1.0 m3 load capacity and the good looks of Giorgetto Giugiaro’s Grand Punto car, the Grande Punto Van balances style with... Read more

Fiat Punto Van (2007 – 2014): At A Glance

The Punto Van took over from the Grande Punto Van in 2012 and although it's still essentially the same model, the changes are more than just the name. On the outside the Punto Van gets fully colour-coded front and rear bumpers while the cabin features new seat fabrics and on the SX version there is a new dashboard with soft touch materials.

It certainly takes on the qualities of the Punto car with neat handling and a comfortable driving position while the ride quality is better than the car version too, especially when unladen. It gets good engines too with three different versions of the economical 1.3-litre MultiJet diesel, the most frugal of which can average a claimed 80.7mpg with CO2 emissions of just 90g/km.

As this is a car-derived van it's not subject to LCV speed limit restrictions yet it's still reasonably van-like when it comes to carrying ability with a 1.0m3 load capacity and a maximum payload of 520kg which is more than the Ford Fiesta Van. The rubber-lined load area is usefully square and there's a mesh bulkhead to protect the driver.

Standard equipment on all versions includes ESP Electronic Stability Programme, BAS Brake Assistance System, remote central locking, electric front windows, electrically adjustable and heated body coloured mirrors, a trip computer, driver and passenger airbags, a CD stereo, height and reach-adjustable steering wheel and a height-adjustable driver’s seat.

 

What does a Fiat Punto Van (2007 – 2014) cost?

Fiat Punto Van (2007 – 2014): What's It Like Inside?

Let’s be blunt, the Fiat Punto Van is not going to suit any van user who needs plenty of space, a mobile workshop or somewhere they can sling their entire day’s equipment for a big job. This is a micro van up against the likes of the Ford Fiesta and Peugeot 207 vans and as such it’s more for light deliveries and city work.

This doesn’t mean you should rule out the Fiat Punto Van as it can carry 1.0 cubic metre of cargo inside its relatively spacious load area. However, accessing this space is more of a problem as the tailgate’s opening is not as big as the space inside. Also, there is quite a drop from the load sill to the load floor, which means heavier items are a pain to heft in and out. With no sliding floor or side doors to aid access, the Punto is best left to light duties, even if the maximum payload is 520kg.

A sliding load cover is an option that can help keep valuable cargo from prying eyes, while a mesh grille keeps loads from tumbling forwards into the cab. As a result of being developed from the passenger car version of the Punto, its load bay is fully lined in plastic and the upper panels are also trimmed. A plastic load floor cover is also included and the Punto Van in SX trim comes with a single 12-volt power supply in the cargo bay.

Up front in the cab, the Punto Van benefits from its passenger car connections with a comfy and surprisingly spacious cab. The driver is treated to plenty of room for head, legs and shoulders, with both models coming with a height adjustable steering column. The SX trim level can also be ordered with electric driver’s seat height adjustment.

For the SX, you can order climate control, a driver’s knee airbag and auxiliary input for an MP3 player. This is in addition to Fiat’s Blue&Me USB port for playing music and hooking up a hands-free mobile phone to the car that is standard on all models.

The dash of the Punto Van is one of the more stylish in this sector and the SX trim adds white dials and some splashes of colour to the trim. This helps lift the Punto cab from function to funky, so if this is a concern for you, the Fiat is a good bet. Otherwise, the materials and cabin plastics are solid without being class-leading, there’s a decent amount of storage around the cab and the passenger has plenty of space and airbags for safety.

What's the Fiat Punto Van (2007 – 2014) like to drive?

While most van buyers will look to the diesel end of the spectrum for their engine, the Fiat Punto Van has the appealing option of the Italian firm’s 0.9-litre TwinAir motor. This petrol unit is a two-cylinder, which might sound a bit puny, but it offers loads of low-rev shove and goes happily to its red line. This makes it a real joy to use and it sounds great too.

Another upside of the TwinAir engine is its CO2 emissions of just 98g/km. It’s helped by standard start/stop technology, which also features as standard on all of the diesel engines except the entry-point 75PS unit. With excellent combined economy of 67.2mpg, the TwinAir makes a convincing case for itself as an alternative to the diesel engines. The only caveat here is you have to drive the TwinAir engine in a very particular way to achieve close to its claimed economy figures and that means sticking to low revs where the engine can feel a little lumpy and uncouth.

Another fly in the ointment for the Twin Air engine is the fact the 85PS 1.3-litre MultiJet diesel engine turns in superb 80.7mpg average economy and CO2 emissions of just 90g/km. This makes it by the best choice of engine in the Punto Van, helped by its generous low-rev shove and more than good refinement when working harder at higher speeds.

The 85PS diesel is happy to zip through town, with start/stop to help save fuel in thick urban traffic. If you need more pip for your zip, the 95PS version of the 1.3 MultiJet diesel offers 67.2mpg and 110g/km CO2 emissions. It has a slight edge when it comes to driving on the motorway, requiring fewer down changes in the five-speed manual gearbox that is used throughout the Punto Van range. The gearbox itself has a light shift and a much more accurate action than the previous Grande Punto gearboxes.

That same lightness of touch applies to the way the Punto covers ground. While not delivering quite the same levels of control and bump absorption as a Ford Fiesta van, the Fiat acquits itself very well and is never less than comfortable. Urban ruts are smoothed out and the handling is near identical to the passenger car version’s nimble agility. Only some scrub from the front wheels is evident when the van is fully laden and you need to be aware of slowing down a little more in advance of corners.

Some wind noise can be heard from around the windscreen pillars, but overall the Punto Van is quiet and the engines keep themselves to a distant hum. There’s also little in the way of road noise or boom from the cargo area. A tight turning circle is welcome and makes the Punto Van a happy companion for town use.

Real MPG average for a Fiat Punto Van (2007 – 2014)

Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their vehicles could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance

91%

Real MPG

59 mpg

MPGs submitted

2

Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.