Fiat X6H Hatch (Next-Gen Punto) Production From March 2017
Will get a new name to replace Palio and Punto nameplates in Brazil; sales in the later half of 2017.
The all-new Fiat X6H hatchback will roll out of the assembly line in March next year from the company’s factory in Pernambuco, Brazil. Set to replace the existing Palio and Punto models in the country, the new hatch is expected on the lines of the Euro-spec Fiat Tipo hatch (derived from Tipo (Aegea) sedan).
In a move to streamline the existing mass-market products sold in developing markets including Brazil and India, FCA is working on a new car that is based on the X6H platform – a stretched version of Fiat’s ‘Economy – 326′ platform that also underpin the Brazilian-spec Palio and Siena models. Fiat has used this platform as against the ‘Small Wide LWB’ platform of the Tipo to make it cost-effective for the growing markets. The prototypes entered into intensive testing phase early this year, sporting heavy camouflage and deceptive body elements.
According to Brazilian reports, the new X6H hatch is likely to sport slightly toned-down styling elements of the European Tipo, along with new interiors. The car will be sold in four trims – 1.0 Attractive, 1.3 Attractive, 1.8 Essence, and 1.8 Sporting, positioning above the Fiat Mobi hatchback (Renault Kwid rival). A sedan version of the X6H will accompany later, to replace the existing Siena and Linea models. A X6H pick-up is also on the anvil, to replace Fiat Strada in Brazilian market.
The 1.0-litre FireFly petrol engine is rated at 72 hp of max power, while the 1.3-litre unit will yield 101 hp at peak demand. The high-performance 1.8-litre E.torQ EVO petrol will generate 135 hp at 5,750 rpm and 185 Nm of torque at 3,750 rpm, with an option of a 6-speed automatic transmission. This engine is already used in Jeep Renegade and Fiat Toro pick-up model ranges. A 5-speed manual and an optional 5-speed Dualogic (AMT) gearbox is standard across other trims. All the three engines are flex-fuel type, i.e. they can run on both petrol and ethanol fuels, with the latter giving an additional power of 4-5 hp.
So what does the new X6H means to India? Since the platform spawns a whole range of mass-market economy cars, it is likely that Fiat substitutes the existing Punto and Linea line-up with the new cars in other developing markets outside the South American region as well. India isn’t a significant market for the company, so a dissimilar product strategy is definitely ruled out. But, this may take a while, at least a couple of years.
As far as Europe and other Western markets, Fiat has already moved away from mass-market products strategy with a two-pronged model line-up.
Next, would you like to read more on Fiat?