The Fiat Tipo Cross combines lifestyle looks with the option of the brand’s latest and sophisticated Hybrid 48V engine. It’s an unusual confection but at the right price, it definitely has some appeal.
The cost of cutting-edge hybrid technology might cause you to think that the family hatchback you have in mind is out of reach. This might not be the case if the car you have in mind is a Fiat Tipo. In SUV-style Cross form, this model can offer you a very clever electrified engine indeed at a bargain.
High technology and lifestyle looks have never previously been things you’d have associated with this sensible Fiat. Tipo history goes all the way back to 1988 and this current version has been on sale since 2015. A far-reaching facelift was introduced in 2020, with the range initially restructured around a single 1.0-litre petrol engine. In early 2022, the line-up’s been slimmed down to a five-door hatch body shape. And a 1.5-litre Hybrid 48V petrol engine option has been added to the range for Cross customers.
The Fiat Tipo Driving Experience
This Cross variant can be purchased with the 100hp 1.0-litre unit that must satisfy other Tipo customers. This only comes with manual transmission that has its work rather cut out propelling a family hatch of this size along. That being said the performance figures aren’t far off the class norm going from rest to 62mph in 11.8s.
The alternative Hybrid 48V variant’s 1.5-litre unit puts out 130hp and 240Nm of torque (rest to 62mph in 9.3s) and is mated to a 7-speed dual-clutch auto transmission. The propulsion system includes a built-in 48 volt 15kW (20hp) electric motor delivering 55Nm of torque, which can propel the wheels even when the internal combustion engine is turned off. So this is definitely an upgrade you should consider.
Whatever your choice of engine, you’ll find that the Tipo’s roadgoing demeanour favours relaxed comfort over dynamic drive. This, however, is fit for purpose as this car is designed primarily to meet the needs of who simply want to get comfortably from A to B. There’s no trick suspension for fancy ride quality, torque vectoring for classy cornering or ridiculously powerful engine options that hardly anyone will buy. Where Turin has had modern carry-over technology, it can use: the engines, the modular platform and the Uconnect infotainment technology. The over-riding priority here has been in the creation of the best possible car for the lowest possible price.
The Fiat Tipo Design and Build
You’d certainly notice this Cross variant as being a little different from the rather unassuming ordinary Tipo hatch model. It’ll have to be a hatch because the UK importers have decided not to continue offering the Tipo SW estate body style. Which is a pity because that estate variant suited the Cross body styling package quite nicely. This hatch version does its best though. Thanks to the Cross package, this variant stands 70mm higher than an ordinary Tipo and gets silver plastic skid plate-style panels at the front and rear as well as along the bottom of the side sills. Roof rails also make the kit list, as do smart 17-inch alloy wheels.
Not as much has been done inside to set this more lifestyle-orientated version apart from humbler Tipo models. As with those, you get a 7-inch central touchscreen (though this one’s fitted out with navigation) and a 7-inch full-colour digital instrument cluster screen too. Hard plastics dominate around the cabin but there’s a pleasingly styled 3-spoke wheel and automatic climate control. In the back, there’s a bit more room than is normal for a family hatchback of this sort. And there’s a decently sized 440-litre boot, extendable by 60:40-split rear seats.
The Fiat Tipo Market and Model
In 1.0-litre manual form, the Tipo Cross comes fully kitted out for around £22,500. It’s more debateable whether you’d want to pay nearly £28,000 for one, which is the sum required for the 130hp Hybrid 48V DDCT auto model. At those kinds of figures, Fiat will still need to make sure that this car is very well specified which it has.
All Cross models get the exterior visual embellishments we detailed in our design section, including also full-LED headlights, front fog lights and LED tail lamps as well as a fairly well kitted out cabin too, which comes with; keyless entry, automatic climate control, a reversing camera, adaptive cruise control, a 7-inch digital instrument cluster screen, heated front seats and intelligent speed assist.
Connectivity is covered off by a 7-inch central touchscreen, with satellite navigation, Bluetooth, USB ports and a DAB tuner. Safety features include autonomous emergency braking, blind spot monitoring, driver drowsiness monitoring, a Lane Support system and Traffic sign recognition.
The Cost of Owning a Fiat Tipo
Let’s get to the WLTP figures. In Cross form, this Tipo’s 1.0-litre 100hp petrol engine delivers up to 48.7mpg and up to 130g/km of CO2. A little down on the 51.4mpg and 125g/km readings you’d get in a conventional Tipo. The alternative Hybrid 48V unit manages 54.3mpg and 119g/km. This is the first Fiat Hybrid that uses the electric motor by completely disconnecting the petrol engine. The petrol engine can remain idle for up to 47 per cent of the time according to the total WLTP cycle. In the urban cycle alone, the percentage rises to 62 per cent. Insurance is group 11 for the 1.0-litre and group 22 for the Hybrid 48V.
Finally, a word about warranties. You get two years of manufacturer cover with this car, plus a further year from the dealer. Plus there’s no mileage limitation, which makes this Fiat deal better than the restricted three year/60,000 mile package you get with rival Astra, Golf and Focus models. There’s also a year of roadside assistance cover, a reasonable three year paintwork warranty and an eight-year anti-perforation guarantee.
The Fiat Tipo is a sensibly priced family hatchback that has the option to install one of the brand’s latest and sophisticated Hybrid 48V engine that allows rest to 62mph in 9.3s. This coupled with Tipo’s roadgoing demeanour being set up to favour relaxed comfort rather than any kind of dynamic drive makes this car a solid purchase. If you are interested in the Fiat Tipo enquire now.