Fiat Grande Punto 2012 Sport 90HP - User Experience Review
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User Experience Review of Fiat Grande Punto 2012 Sport 90HP
Last Updated at 11:54 am, May 20, 2013Rating :
The Punto Sport carries over the creature comforts of the Emotion trim and adds some sporty elements to the mix.
When the Punto came out in 2009, many complained about the quality of plastics. But over the years, Fiat has worked towards bettering the plastics and the overall fit and finish of their cars. The effort is visible the moment you get inside the cabin. The rough edges, the panel gaps, the low-rent plastics - most of them are gone. The plastics are still the scratchy type like those in most other cars in this segment – however the texture looks rich.
The dashboard carries forward the black and dark-grey colour combination that was first seen on the 2012 Punto. The centre console gets a metallic silver finish that gels well with the rest of the theme. What differentiates the interiors of the Sport from the regular Punto is the red stitching on the seats and on the leather wrapped gear-knob. It's not a remarkable change, but the cabin looks premium nevertheless.
The Punto Sport trades in the regular rubber-wrapped pedals for brushed-metal ones. But while they feel nice and sporty to operate, I don't like the ergonomics. The clutch pedal has an unusually long travel and tends to become cumbersome when driving through stop-and-go city traffic. Furthermore, if you are wearing chunky casual shoes, then chances are that the dead pedal will keep interfering or brushing against the sole when you operate the clutch pedal. This also means that the process of taking your foot off the dead pedal and back onto the clutch-pedal isn't as easy and quick as it should be.
Don't let the 'Sport' tag scare you - for you don't get racing bucket seats or five-point seatbelts in this car. After all, it isn't a track tool, so you still get the comfortably large bucket seats upfront. The padding is soft and the seats can be adjusted for height, reach and recline.
The rear seats have contours that are much similar to the one seen on the Ford Figo’s rear bench. The Punto’s seat is wide and can comfortably seat two adults and a kid. The rear seat also gets two adjustable headrests. The rear parcel tray is fairly large too and since the car has a decent, four-way speaker set, you can use the tray for stowing away knick-knacks.
Since the Punto Sport is built on top of the Emotion variant, you get all the bells and whistles like climate control, a feature rich audio system, Microsoft Blue-N-Me phone pairing, steering mounted controls and a voice-command system - which actually understands Indian accents. Unlike the erstwhile Palio S10, the Punto Sport gets cup holders as well! In fact, despite the Sport moniker, the newest Punto doesn’t go overboard and still gives you all the creature comforts that you expect from today’s premium hatchbacks.
First Published on 02:21 am, September 16, 2012