2012 Fiat Punto 1.4 - Interior Review

02/04/2012 - 08:40 | ,  ,   | Kaustubh Shinde

2012 Fiat Punto interiorsThe Punto takes a lot of its interior traits from the Linea. Doing that is a double edged sword because although it carries a lot of awesome offerings of the Linea which is priced a couple of lakhs higher than the Punto, it also carries the negatives from its elder sister.

We loved the Punto’s design language very much. It is simple, elegant and all time classy design when compared to its competition.

However, interiors is a whole new game. Competition such as Swift, Polo, i20 and Jazz are the established benchmarks.

Does the Punto make the cut? Let’s find out:

2012 Fiat Punto interiors

As mentioned earlier, the Punto draws its interiors from the Linea. However, in the Fiat Linea, you get black and light beige combination. To keep things different, the Punto gets black and grey finish on the inside.

2012 Fiat Punto steering wheel2012 Fiat Punto steering mounted controls2012 Fiat Punto steering mounted controls

The Punto gets a three spoke, leather wrapped steering wheel with steering mounted controls. The three spoke steering wheel provides adequate grip with very ergonomic thumb recesses.

2012 Fiat Punto indicator stalk2012 Fiat Punto wiper stalk

Just like in the Linea, indicator and wiper stalks positions have been switched.

2012 Fiat Punto dial cluster2012 Fiat Punto headlight beam2012 Fiat Punto power windows

Unlike the Linea, the Punto gets black surround speed dials. Somehow, I wished the Punto also got the imaginative dials like the Linea. This instrument cluster looks a little less ‘Italian’. A small display below the dials shows you all sorts of information such as average fuel economy, trip distance, average speed etc.

2012 Fiat Punto center console2012 Fiat Punto gear stick2012 Fiat Punto center console

Moving on to the center console which is just a transplant from the Linea and so is the gear stick.

2012 Fiat Punto MP3 player2012 Fiat Punto climate control2012 Fiat Punto cup holders

The dash has an MP3 player and a climate control system. The top variant gets the Microsoft-developed ‘Blue & me’ technology that synchronizes your phone with the car to make and receive calls, and have the car read out SMSes to the driver. Note worth taking down is that there are no problems with the Punto cooling now.

The AC works just fine! The Blaupunkt music system has very good sound quality. The trouble is that the USB input is hidden inside the glovebox and the AUX port has been chucked off. Not cool!

2012 Fiat Punto pedals2012 Fiat Punto dead pedal

Unlike the Linea, it is very easy to find the correct seating position in the Punto. But there is BIG problem. The Punto gets a dead pedal which is very good. Unfortunately, the dead pedal is very close to the clutch pedal which makes the footwell very cramped. You put your feet on the clutch pedal and the dead pedal block the complete pressing action. This is one car I wish did not have a dead pedal because it only makes things worse. Strangely, we never faced this problem in the Linea.

2012 Fiat Punto rear seats2012 Fiat Punto seats

Moving to the rear, the Punto has adequate space for 3 passengers in the rear seat but they will rub shoulders after some time. The rear seat is nice and comfortable and has adequate leg space as well. Only when the driver’s seat is pushed to its farthest position, things get a bit cramped. We also missed the rear sun blind that was present in the Linea.

2012 Fiat Punto boot2012 Fiat Punto boot

The boot space of the Punto is a very healthy 280 litres, plenty of space for a car in this class.

Things that I did not like about the Punto interiors:

  • The biggest grouse so far is the position of the clutch and dead pedal.
  • No Aux port
  • Some bits and pieces of the interior feel a bit tacky
  • The storage solutions around the driver area are pretty useless. The cup holders cannot hold average size cups neither can the door pockets hold small water bottles. This is going to be a problem for long journeys.
  • Some people may complain the black and grey interiors look dull.
  • The steering wheel cannot be adjusted for reach.
  • Unlike the Linea which got auto headlamps and rain sensing wipers in the update, the Punto did not get any flashy gadgets. This was fine because no other hatchback in the segment had those features. However, Hyundai has changed the game by launching these ‘premium class’ features in the i20. It is definitely an opportunity missed by Fiat.
  • Technically, the wheelbase of the Punto is more than the Honda Jazz. But the interior space use isn’t as efficient.
  • The thick C-pillar and small rear windshield reduces rear-end visibility which makes parking in tight spots a bit daunting.

There are a few inefficiencies in the Punto’s interior. As a result, we cannot say that it is the best interior in its class. A few competitors do offer slightly more likeable interiors. However, when viewed as a package, the Punto’s interior is complete. It has decent interiors to keep the competition at bay. But remember, this is a 1.4L Punto, the real story is the driving impressions!

You might also like