- Great styling
- Lots of comfort
- Nice to drive
- Lack of equipment
- Not as cheap to run as rivals
- Safety options
Fiat Talento offers a serious contender
Should a van buyer looking for a spacious new van that’s also compact sized and affordable, then the Fiat Talento could be a decent compromise. It’s got as much space as most buyers will be looking for and it’s also cheap to run. While many people may eschew the chance of buying a Fiat car, that’s not the same consideration for Fiat vans which have built up their following of fans and their van range over the last few years to provide an interesting alternative in the segment. While the prices do not compare favourably with some rivals, the Talento SX models are well equipped and offer nice levels of comfort and refinement to be a worthy consideration.
Reasons to buy
Along with the reasonable purchase price, the Fiat Talento is taking on some better-known mid-size rivals so it needs to be a decent offering, and it certainly does meet lots of requirements. It helps that a lot of the mechanicals are shared with the Vuaxhall Vivaro and the Renault Trafic though with different engines. The Talento also offers some clever design ideas which work well for everyday use. However, Fiat says one of the best reasons for buying the Talento is down to its extensive dealer network, much of which is open 24 hours a day for repairs and servicing – a big plus for firms who don’t like to have a long downtime for their vans.
If you like the Fiat Talento then take a look at the Ford Transit Custom, the Mercedes Vito and the Renault Trafic.
Powered with a 1.6 litre diesel engine, which is more efficient than was used in the previous Fiat Scudo, the Talento also offers low running costs. Part of this is down to the selective catalytic reduction system and AdBlue additive. The engine producing 125 bhp in the Ecojet model should return 48 mpg with emissions of 155g/km – that’s better than the previous model’s economy of 43 mpg. However, those who opt for the 145 bhp high-performance Ecoject unit should enjoy economy of 46 mpg with emissions of 160g/km. It may also help to know that the engines are claimed to be a good choice for nearly 250,000 miles of use. Service intervals are set at two years or 20,000 miles for the Talento. The warranty is for 120,000 miles or three-years.
Among the wide range of body styles, the load space is also useful help with the ‘CargoPlus’ storage area which extends underneath the passenger seat so lengths of up to 3.75 metres can be carried. For the long wheelbase versions, the extra length is 4.15 metres. The load space is 5.2 cubic metres and an impressive 6 cubic metres in the long wheelbase version, though for those opting for the long wheelbase with high roof model, the space is 8.6 cubic metres. Essentially, even in the short wheelbase version, the Fiat Talento has the capability of carrying three Euro pallets that weigh up to 1,250 kg which, while good, is not as good as some rivals.
Technology & Safety
The Fiat Talento has a lot to offer with technology and safety equipment including electronic stability control, ABS, hill start assist and daylight running lights. There’s also a standard steel bulkhead fitted and the construction of the van feels solid. Other equipment fitted includes emergency brake assist and the option of a trailer stability assistance system. Other options include cruise control and a reversing camera as well as side and window airbags for the models that don’t have these features as standard.
Under the bonnet, the 1.6 litre diesel engine is both frugal and efficient with the 95 bhp entry-level unit producing torque of 260Nm and fuel economy of 44 mpg. There’s a more powerful unit, the 120 bhp MultiJet version which delivers torque of 300Nm and economy of 44 mpg and there are also two other versions of the unit available with power outputs of 125 bhp and 145 bhp. Out on the road, the engines deliver power when needed and are good performers around town where the engines prove agile and they are solid when driven over long journeys as well. The ride itself is refined and comfortable, the suspension has been well designed and weighted with good feedback from the steering setup. It should also be appreciated that the engine used for the Talento is the same one for the Trafic and the Mercedes Vito, so it’s tried and tested.
There are nine body styles of the Fiat Talento to choose from, including high roof vans in long and short wheelbase versions to standard vans, crew vans and people carriers among them. The rear doors have wide opening to enable easy access and loading, while the sliding side door has a 1,030 mm opening that’s just 100 mm above ground level. There are two trim levels with standard equipment including electric windows, Bluetooth connectivity, central locking, steering wheel controls and DAB radio. Other models come with parking sensors, air conditioning and the firm’s ‘mobile office’, cruise control and satnav. The cabin has also been well designed which is functional and smart though the equipment levels could be better on the entry-level Talento.