Fiat pitches the Panda under £9,000

Fiat has released pricing details for the new Panda, giving it a starting point £8,900.

What does that mean? Well, it means that getting into a new Panda is almost a grand more expensive than getting into a Volkswagen Up. Uh oh.
We all know, of course, that base level list prices mean nothing - nothing, we tells ya - in the real world of buying a small car, and that they're skewed by equipment levels and such like.

However, pitching the Panda at £8,900 when the Up range starts below £8,000 leaves Fiat open to criticism from devious motoring journalists looking for an easy angle.

So, like we said, Fiat has made the absolutely shocking decision to start the Panda range at almost 1,000 big ones more than the three-door Up. And the gap will be wider between it and the cheaper SEAT Up Mii and Skoda Up Citigo.

But enough of that, because there's much to get worked up about when it comes to Fiat's new city car. It's five-door by default, unlike the Up, and it will feature Fiat's brilliant little 0.9-litre TwinAir engine with 85bhp. There'll be a 69bhp 1.2-litre petrol as well, and a 1.3-litre diesel with 75bhp.

Trim levels mimic those of the Fiat 500, so they're called Pop, Easy and Lounge. Panda Pop...remember that?

History is repeating itself, because once again having a Panda Pop is a signal that you're camped in the lower echelons of life. Whether Coke and Pepsi drinkers will mock you mercilessly remains to be seen. It still hurts.

Panda Pops get electric windows, central locking, body coloured bumpers and come in a variety of delicious looking bright colours.

An Easy Panda gets all the girls. It has air conditioning and a better stereo, while Lounge Pandas get alloys, fog lamps and body coloured mirrors.

And before you know it, you're paying over £12,000 for your Panda. Still, that's not too bad - the Ford Ka tops out at about the same place.

It goes on sale later this month.
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