- Fiat Panda Trekking, 2013
Fiat Panda Trekking is the link between the 4x2 and the 4x4 version, it combines off-road looks with smart front-wheel drive and "Traction+" technology. That's what makes this new car the perfect solution for those who mainly use their vehicles in the city, but want to travel safely on surfaces with poorer road grip during all their outdoor activities. All of this without compromising on the space and versatility so unique to an SUV which is compact on the outside but surprisingly large on the inside. This is how Panda Trekking became Fiat's first 5-door 'City Utility Vehicle' in the segment.
From a stylistic point of view, the new Fiat Panda Trekking is perfectly in line with the 4x4 version: the only differences are the cosmetic treatment of the alloy rims (aluminium instead of burnished) and the absence of a silver skid plate. Like on the Panda 4x4, the new model is characterised by the marked geometric lines of the front and rear bumpers, while the tailpipes seamlessly follow the lines of the body. For those who choose the 4x4 look, two new body colours now complement the existing colour palette: Sicilia orange (pastel) and Toscana green (metallic).
The interiors pick up the solutions adopted on 4x2 versions with a few significant exceptions: a new green fascia variant frames the instruments and the large storage pocket, there are fabric seats with a special design in three colour options (green, beige, pumpkin) and eco-leather details, front and rear door panels also with eco-leather inserts and finally a high console over the central tunnel which adds a further storage compartment to the 14 already present on the 4x2 versions.
The Fiat Panda Trekking is available with the following engines: 85 HP 0.9 TwinAir Turbo, 80 HP TwinAir Turbo Natural Power and 75 HP 1.3 MultiJet II. Along with their 5-speed manual gearboxes, these are all state-of-the-art power units, both in terms of performance and in terms of fuel consumption and emissions, reinforcing Fiat Automobile's constant focus on environmental issues, by researching and developing specific solutions that are accessible and ready-to-use.
"Traction+": increased safety on any road surface
A key feature of the 85 HP Trekking 0.9 TwinAir Turbo and the 75 HP Trekking 1.3 MultiJet II is their adoption of "Traction+" as standard, an innovative traction control system that improves handling on difficult and slippery terrain and also costs far less than conventional 4x4 drive. "Traction+," combined with the specially designed 175/65 R15 84T M+S tyres (standard) is therefore perfectly in tune with the Panda concept: a car for doing whatever you want.
The new "Traction +" system uses the advanced hardware present on cars equipped with ESC, but is far more than a simple extension of ESC. Thanks to special algorithms for controlling and managing the braking system, the control unit electronically simulates the behaviour of a self-locking electromechanical differential. Software optimisations and the fact that force is applied through the normal (hydraulic) braking circuit makes the system's action more progressive than that of conventional systems. Though performance is easily comparable, the system is much lighter. The system is activated using a button on the dashboard, and can be operated at speeds of up to 30 km/h.
This is how it works. Under conditions of low or zero grip from any drive wheel, the control unit detects slip and commands the hydraulic circuit to apply braking force to the slipping wheel, thus shifting drive to the wheel on the surface offering better grip. This makes it easy to drive, maintains directional stability and control, and ensures the best possible traction even over the roughest and most slippery surfaces.
The Fiat Panda Trekking is therefore at ease even on rough and challenging terrains, as demonstrated by its excellent "typical off-road angles": 20° (attack), 36° (exit) and 20° (elevation) in the version fitted with the 1.3 MultiJet II 75 HP engine, which become 20° - 36° - 16° for the Panda Trekking 0.9 TwinAir and for the Panda Trekking 0.9 TwinAir Natural Power.
Compact on the outside, spacious and flexible on the inside
Offered with five doors and with the passenger room of a higher segment, the new Fiat Panda Trekking is an authentic City SUV, in that it efficiently combines its smaller external size with a surprising internal volume. The passenger compartment also boasts great flexibility - thanks above all to the variety of seating adjustments available - and excellent visibility and command of the road due to the extensive glazed areas, the high driving position and the gear lever positioned at the centre of the dashboard.
In fact, even though it is just 368 centimetres long, 167 cm wide and 160 cm high with a wheelbase of 230 centimetres, the new vehicle can accommodate up to five people and boasts a boot amongst the most spacious in its segment: 225 litres which can be extended to 260 with the sliding rear seat pushed fully forward or 870 litres with the backrest of the rear seats folded.
As well as being spacious, the passenger compartment of the new Trekking is also functional and comfortable thanks to the variety of seating configurations. For example: the driver's seat is also available with adjustable height while the front passenger seat can be fitted with a fold-down table backrest. In this latter case, this means you can benefit from a handy support surface both for common objects, such as a handbag or a laptop, as well as for more unusual items: when the rear seats are also folded down, the customer can obtain a flat loading surface for the entire length of the passenger compartment (more than 2 metres), allowing maximum use of the interior space.
The rear seat ensures the same versatility. It is available in the standard 2-seater version with folding unsplit backrest or, on request, in the following configurations: 2 seats, sliding lengthwise, with 50/50 split folding backrest; 3 seats with folding backrest; and 3 seats with 60/40 split folding backrest. This can all be made even more functional if combined with the handy and useful "cargo box" container that when placed in the boot lets you both stow several objects inside of it or obtain an all but flat loading surface.