First NZ sub $15K five-star car

First NZ sub $15K five-star car

IMG_2477-1-340x226Fiat Chrysler New Zealand has fired a price war salvo into the light hatchback market by dropping five thousand dollars off the retail price of it’s Panda five-door hatch.

The Fiat Panda has become New Zealand’s most affordable European small car with a starting price of $14,990 plus on road costs says the distributor but it also says that numbers at this price will be strictly limited.

It also sets a new record for safety at this price point being the cheapest yet 5-star safety rated vehicle in the market.

“This is a great opportunity for the new car buyer to obtain a five-star rated vehicle, even if it’s only for a limited time,” says AA motoring services manager Stella Stocks.

The new prices of $14,990 plus on road costs for the Fiat Panda Easy TwinAir, and $16,990 plus on road costs for the Fiat Panda Lounge TwinAir represent a saving of $5000 compared to the normal prices for the car.

The promotional retail pricing includes a comprehensive three year/150,000 km warranty.

According to Fiat the 63kW turbocharged two-cylinder 875cc TwinAir engine has the lowest carbon dioxide emissions of any quantity production petrol engine and combined fuel economy of 4.1L/100km.

Both Easy and Lounge models are fitted with the Start&Stop system and the gear shift indicator (GSI) feature, which suggests to the driver when to change gear in order to achieve the best fuel economy.

The Panda secured its Car of the Year title thanks to its big on the inside, small on the outside design as well as its blend of fun, style and functionality says Fiat Chrysler.

It provides more space for passengers and their luggage, while still maintaining sufficiently diminutive exterior dimensions to provide ease of use around the city.

Panda’s safety credentials includes six airbags, ABS anti-lock braking with Brake Assist System (BAS), Electronic Stability Program (ESP) and an active anti-whiplash head restraint system as standard equipment across the range.

It also features a new safety innovation on the Lounge variant called Low Speed Collision Mitigation – this safety system reads the road ahead and when it detects an obstacle in the vehicle’s path, applies the brakes automatically to avoid a collision.

The new Panda is equipped with the Blue&Me connectivity system to allow owners to sync music players and mobile phones with the vehicle, enabling handsfree control of devices using either voice activation or steering-wheel mounted controls.

It is also available with the latest Blue&Me TomTom navigation device as an option, featuring a 4.3-inch touchscreen.

All Panda models are fitted with the navigation device docking port as standard equipment, which means they are all pre-equipped and ready to fully integrate the navigation unit with the vehicle’s audio system.

Car and SUV reviewed the Panda in May 2014, click here for more details.

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