Fiat Fiorino Passenger Transport review

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Fiat has a small van that can seat five and hold their luggage. Jonathan Crouch takes a look at the Fiorano Passenger Transport.


Combi is a common term in commercial vehicle circles. It's used by a number of manufacturers to indicate a van that has had some extra seats installed in its load bay. You might expect to see it attached to a panel van or some other suitably roomy model but Fiat's Fiorino? This is one of the smallest purpose-built vans on the market, yet a Combi version there is. Once the default reaction of "I'm not getting in the back of that" has subsided, the Fiorino Combi might just surprise a few people with its capacity and versatility.

Ten Second Review

Fiat's Fiorino van is small for a commercial vehicle but the Italian maker is confident it can accommodate a second row of seats in Passenger Transport form and still make sense. A larger vehicle would certainly be more comfortable for five occupants on longer journeys but on short trips around town, there's sufficient space. There's decent luggage capacity too, especially with the seats folded, while attractive looks and sturdy build also count in this Passenger Transport model's favour.


The Fiorino is Fiat's smallest purpose-built van. It delivers a reasonably spacious load bay coupled with micro dimensions that should make the cuts and thrusts of metropolitan motoring that bit easier to avoid. The van, like the mainstay of Fiat's light commercial vehicle range, was originally created in partnership with PSA Peugeot Citroen but the PSA partner models (the Peugeot Bipper and Citroen Nemo) are long gone, as is the old proper passenger-carrying Fiat version of this design, the Qubo. This Passenger Transport varaiant of the Fiorano van though, continues.

Driving Experience

The engine line up is unsurprisingly made up of small, economical diesel units. Fiat has installed 80 and 95bhp versions of its acclaimed 1.3-litre Multijet oil-burner, an extremely compact and lightweight affair that gives rise to excellent fuel economy and with 190Nm of torque, it feels strong as well. With that maximum torque produced at 1,750rpm, the Fiorino has the punchy element to its performance that's perfect for darting in and out of traffic. It also has the accurate steering and tight turning circle that operators want when space is tight. All models get a five-speed manual gearbox.

For urban use, operators will be pleased to find that all Fiorinos have the accurate power steering and tight turning circle that's needed when space is tight. That means just 2.8 turns lock-to-lock, enabling a 10.0m kerb-to-kerb turning circle rising to 10.5m wall-to-wall. On the open road, body roll is well controlled, as are noise levels, but the ride is a bit choppy on uneven surfaces. You'll find ventilated disc brakes at the front, drums at the rear, and ABS and Electronic Brakeforce Distribution are both standard features.

Design and Build

From the outside, things don't look promising. The Fiorino Passenger Transport shares the pleasantly chunky styling of the van version with the only visual clue to its additional seating being small extra side windows behind the front ones. It's just hard to imagine five people and even a little bit of cargo fitting comfortably inside when you view the thing from across the street. Happily, the Fiat Fiorino is bigger than it looks and five occupants do fit. Getting three across the rear bench seat might be difficult if they're of the burlier persuasion and access is hindered by the presence of only one sliding side door (a second is optional) but legroom is OK and there's loads of fresh air overhead. With the seats in use, there's a handy 360-litres of cargo space behind. When they're not, the backs fold down and the bases tumble forward to yield 2,500 litres, which is only 300-litres down on the capacity of the Fiorino van.

The interior of the Fiorino will feel a little confined to those familiar with full size compact vans but there's reasonable space for driver and passenger. The driving position is upright and affords a good view of the Fiorino's surroundings with the seat and the steering wheel offering a good range of adjustability. Storage space is less generous than in models from the next class up but with 12 compartments to choose from, there should be room for most of the essentials. Lots of the switchgear in the Fiorino will be familiar to owners of Fiat passenger cars and these days the Italian firm is well up to speed in terms of build quality. The general impression is one of user-friendliness and sturdy design, just what you want.

Market and Model

Prices ex VAT start from just under £18,000 and there are two trim levels with the Fiorino Passenger Transport ('Tecnico' and 'Adventure') and quite a few optional extras to mull over. Standard spec is quite basic but includes a nearside sliding side door, 15" steel wheels, side windows for the second row with a hinged opening, PVC floor lining for the load area, carpet for the forward areas, power steering, a driver's airbag, three-point belts for all seats and a CD stereo.

The options list has stuff like air-conditioning, a Bluetooth hands free phone system, remote central locking, an automatic gearbox, a second sliding side door and front fog lights on it. Fiat also offers the Fiorino in some particularly lurid paint colours for operators who like to make an impact.

Practicalities and Costs

The Fiorino should prove extremely economical to run thanks to its Multijet diesel engine. This employs fuel-saving technologies such as a Start & Stop system, a 'smart' alternator and a variable displacement oil pump. You're looking at 55-57mpg on the combined cycle and up to 130g/km of CO2.


For a vehicle of just under four-meters in length, the Fiorino Passenger Transport uses its space very effectively. It has five usable seats and, even when those are all being used, a reasonable amount of luggage capacity. With only one or two people on board, the seats in the back can be folded and the result is carrying capacity that isn't too far shy of a standard Fiorino van. The number of operators who need a five-seater vehicle of the Fiorino Passenger Transport's modest dimensions will be limited but as a cost-effective way of moving people and equipment around town, it has a lot going for it.

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