Fiat Punto (2010-present)

The Fiat Punto is a stylish, reasonably priced supermini – but it’s approaching its sell-by date.

Strengths & Weaknesses

Strengths 

Good-looking
Fairly cheap to buy
Reasonably comfortable

Weaknesses 

Dated, inefficient engines
Residual values not great
Low-quality interior finish

60-second review The Fiat Punto has been a popular contender in the crowded supermini class for many years. However, the current version has been on sale in largely unchanged form since 2010 and can actually trace it roots back to the Fiat Grande Punto that first appeared in 2005. That means it’s starting to look seriously out-of-date next to fresher competition like the Volkswagen Polo, SEAT Ibiza, Skoda Fabia, Ford Fiesta, Kia Rio, Hyundai i20, Vauxhall Corsa, Renault Clio and Peugeot 208.

Counting in the Punto’s favour are light steering and a soft ride that make it pleasant to drive around town, plus handsome looks and reasonable passenger and boot space. Standard equipment isn’t too bad, either, with air-conditioning, Bluetooth and alloy wheels on even the entry-level model. However, the Punto is sorely lacking in common modern features like a touchscreen infotainment system and safety innovations like automatic emergency braking.

The other big downside of the Punto is its poor engine range. While it was previously offered with a 1.3-litre diesel, the choice has now been reduced to just two out-of-date, inefficient (and pretty slow) petrols. There are just two trim levels, too.

The Punto is cheap to buy (even more so given the discounts dealers are offering on BuyaCar), but running costs are average at best. It also depreciates very steeply, losing about 50% of its value after just two years of ownership. That does at least mean it can make a pretty savvy used-car buy, though – especially if you get a higher-spec example.

If you do decide to buy a new Punto, make sure that you get a suitably hefty discount (in the order of 20%) from your local dealer, as otherwise you’ll be paying over the odds for what is no longer a very competitive car compared to its rivals.

Last Updated 

Thursday, March 24, 2016 - 16:15

Key facts 

Warranty: 
Three years/100,000 miles (two-year manufacturer + one-year dealer)
Boot size: 
275 litres
Width: 
1,687mm
Length: 
4,065mm
Height: 
1,490mm
Tax (min to max): 
£110 to £130

Best Fiat Punto for... 

Fiat Punto 1.2 Easy+ 3dr
There’s not a great deal of difference in the fuel economy of the various Fiat Punto versions, but the 1.2-litre engine will return 53mpg to the 1.4’s 49mpg. That’s not great compared to rivals – most of which are free to tax, while the Punto attracts a £110 annual bill.
Fiat Punto 1.4 Easy+ 5dr
If you have kids, you should obviously pick the five-door Punto over the three-door. You’ll definitely want the stronger 1.4-litre engine and better equipped Easy+ trim level, too.
Fiat Punto 1.4 Easy+ 3dr
There used to be an Abarth performance version of the Punto, but that’s now been discontinued. The three-door at least looks sportier than the five-door (especially with the Easy+’s larger alloy wheels) while the 1.4-litre engine is marginally quicker than the 1.2-litre.
Fiat Punto 1.2 Pop+ 3dr
This version of the Punto combines the least powerful engine (the 1.2-litre), least well equipped trim level (Pop+) and least practical bodystyle (three-door), so there’s little to recommend it.

Fiat Punto History 

January 2010: Goes on sale, initially called ‘Punto Evo’
October 2010: Recall of 29,000 May-August 2010 Fiats for airbag problem
February 2011: Punto MyLife trim level introduced
March 2011: Recall of 8,100 Jul ’09 - Mar ’10 Fiats for fire risk
June 2012: Facelift sees revised front end and return of ‘Punto’ name
December 2012: Recall of 3,000 Jun-Sep 2012 Fiats for braking issue
August 2013: Sporting trim level added to range
April 2014: Three-door-only Punto Jet Black 2 special edition introduced

Understanding Fiat Punto car names 

  • Punto
  • Engine
    1.4
  • Trim
    Easy+
  • Engine
    Although previously available with diesel power, these days, the Punto is only offered in the UK with 1.2 and 1.4-litre petrol engines.
  • Trim
    Trims: The range of trim levels – or versions – of the Punto has also contracted of late and there are now just two options: Pop+ and Easy+.

Fiat Punto Engines 

Engines: 1.2, 1.4 (petrol) While Fiat Punto buyers could choose between petrol or diesel power earlier in the model’s time on sale, these days the car is only offered with two pretty unremarkable petrol engines.

There’s a 1.2-litre that makes 69bhp and a 1.4-litre that produces 77bhp. Their similar power outputs result in pretty similar fuel-economy, CO2 emissions and performance figures, with the 1.4-litre being (unsurprisingly) slightly quicker but less efficient than the 1.2-litre. You may as well test-drive both and see if the difference is enough to sway you one way or the other, but we’d recommend the 1.4-litre.

The Punto does at least have reasonably soft suspension, so it deals with potholes and bumps around town well, but the downside is it wallows around a lot in corners and could in no way be described as fun to drive. Key rival the Ford Fiesta is light years ahead in this respect (and many others).

Fuel

Mpg

Bhp

0 - 62mph

top speed

1.2

Petrol

53.3mpg

68bhp

14.4s

97mph

1.4

Petrol

49.6mpg

76bhp

13.2s

103mph

Fiat Punto Trims 

Trims: Pop+, Easy+
Like the engine range, the Punto’s spread of trim levels – or versions – has become considerably smaller as it enters the twilight of its time on sale in the UK. While some Fiat dealers may have stock of certain older versions still on the forecourt, order a new Punto today and you can pick from only two specifications: Pop+ and Easy+.

The former is described by Fiat as ‘simple and functional’ and includes as standard manual air-conditioning, Bluetooth mobile phone connectivity, USB and MP3 player sockets, 15-inch alloy wheels, central locking, electric front windows, a height-adjustable driver’s seat and a reach-and-rake adjustable steering wheel.

Easy+ has a plusher-looking interior, with a leather steering wheel and gearknob. The Pop+’s manual air-conditioning is here upgraded to automatic climate control, while you also get larger (16-inch) alloy wheels, a TomTom satellite-navigation system, front foglights, a 60:40 split-folding rear seat, power-adjustable door mirrors, an engine stop-start system and a chrome exhaust pipe.

All that is definitely enough to make it worthwhile stepping up from Pop+, but what really seals the deal is that this trim level has side airbags, whereas the Pop+ doesn’t – making do with driver, front-passenger and window airbags only.

Fiat Punto Reliability and warranty 

Reliability and warranty Fiat (and Italian cars in general) used to be known for borderline-catastrophic reliability, but things have improved markedly in recent years. Owners do report that the Punto is plagued by minor electrical niggles rather than serious mechanical failures, but those can be pretty annoying all the same. This version of the Punto itself didn’t appear in the 2015 edition of Auto Express magazine’s Driver Power customer-satisfaction survey, but the contemporary Fiat Panda did, ranking 106th out of 200 cars for reliability and 175th for build quality.

Warranty-wise, the Punto is covered for three years, but unlike a lot of brands, the third year’s cover is supplied by your Fiat dealer, not the company itself. There’s a generous 100,000-mile limit on the total guarantee at least.

Used Fiat Punto 

Used Fiat Punto The Fiat Punto can be appealing as a used car: there’s lots of them around to choose from and prices are low. Depending on your budget, though, it may be worth looking at what sort of offers your local Fiat dealer has on at the moment: as the Punto is nearing the end of its time on sale, franchises are keen to clear existing stock and will offer keen prices to do so.

At the time of writing, for example you could get an Easy+ spec car on BuyaCar for over 20% below the manufacturer list price. Even bigger savings are available on the used market proper, as the Punto sheds around half of its list price after just two years of ownership. The other advantage of looking at older used Puntos is that it opens up a wider selection of engines, such as the 1.3-litre MultiJet diesel and 0.9-litre ‘TwinAir’ petrol, which are no longer available to order in a new-build Punto.

List price

BuyaCar new

1 year old

2 years old

3 years old

Best for performance

Fiat Punto 1.4 Easy+ 3dr

Price

£12,500

£9,808

£7,255

£6,225

£5,025

Save

22%

42%

50%

60%

Best for families

Fiat Punto 1.4 Easy+ 5dr

Price

£13,100

£10,557

£7,610

£6,525

£5,290

Save

19%

42%

50%

60%

Best for economy

Fiat Punto 1.2 Easy+ 3dr

Price

£12,090

£9,415

£7,405

£6,340

£5,135

Save

22%

39%

48%

58%