Fiat Bravo, the car that went on to break the stereotypes about Italian cars. It’s just that he came to a party where no one was there, so he waved the flag for 5 minutes and then left. Fiat Bravo, one of the best cars you know nothing about.
Fiat Bravo came about in 2007 to replace the not-so-good-old Stilo, a car that confirmed all the bad stereotypes about Italian cars, and especially Fiat. It’s just that Fiat Bravo came up with a new image, a new logo and a new concept. And how did it do on the market? Nobody bought it.
Why was Fiat Bravo a more resounding failure than the Ms. May’s Brexit?
- Because it didn’t have Boris Johnson’s outstanding hairstyle.
- Fiat also had a dubious past on the quality side, so people’s prejudices were stronger than any argument could have been brought in by sales agents. Plus the presence of the Fiat Albea did not help Bravo at all. Fiat Albea was that roommate who embarassed you every time you had someone visiting you. The fact that the first generation of the Dacia Logan, a car built with very old technology and driven to the limit of the economy was light-years of a car over the Fiat Albea, says something about the quality of 2000s Fiat.
- Fiat Bravo was launched in 2007, right before the huge economic crisis. At that time, everyone threw money out the window, usually out the window of a Porsche Cayenne. Everyone had atleast one BMW X6 at home. A simple and cheap hatchback did not have place in a world where you could buy a flat screen TV with just your ID card and a verbal promise.
- These factors were a goldmine for those looking for cheap and good cars, because the price of Fiat Bravo fell like a sack of potatoes from the attic even if the car is quite good. Yes, you won’t impress anyone by saying you own a Fiat Bravo. Yes, you won’t win credits on the street (though with a 150 horsepower 1.4 T-Jet version you’ll be comically fast). But for those who are looking for a simple everyday car, cheap on maintenance, it is very difficult to beat the Fiat Bravo. You just have to look beyond the logo. And here I come to its catch 22: It is very cheap to buy a used Fiat Bravo, but it is very difficult to find one because no one has bought it new in the first place.
Fiat Bravo Engines
- 1.4 MPI of 90 horsepower – An engine devoid of power or problems. Very reliable instead, but that can be said about most 1.4 MPI engines in the industry. However, if you are in no hurry and you certainly do not want to rush to the service, this is the engine you want.
- 1.4 T-Jet of 120 and 152 horsepower – Again without notable issues, the turbo version of the 1.4 MPI was bought mainly by enthusiasts. The 120 horsepower version can still be bought by regular people, but the 152 horsepower saw more abuse than an console controller used mainly for Mortal Kombat.
- 1.4 Multiair Turbo of 140 horsepower – Sensitive to oil quality and change intervals, 1.4 Multiair has proven to be a decently reliable engine. However, great care for the oil to be of quality and to be changed at 10-15,000 km, not what is written in the book. Try and not to act like you know better than what the book says.
- 1.8 E.Torq of 130 horsepower – Launched in 2011, this engine was bolted on Mini, Fiat and even Jeep Renegade. However, this 1.8-liter engine was put on a car that barely anyone bought in the first place. People who want a cheap Fiat did not buy it because it is too expensive, enthusiasts did not buy it because the 1.4 T-Jet is smaller, more powerful and with greater potential for ciuning and so this engine was pretty much orphaned.
- 1.6 MultiJet of 90, 105 and 120 horsepower – The smallest of the Multijet family, for those people who eager to save 5 pounds on taxes. And it seems that the owners of Fiat Bravo are really into those 5 euros, because the 1.6 is the most popular engine on the roads. Like, out of the 5 Bravo from all over Europe, 2 of them have this engine. Probably the third one has this engine aswell, but it’s owner doesn’t know exactly what engine his Fiat has, as he knows very little about cars.
- 1.9 Multijet of 90, 120 and 150 horsepower – Now we’re already talking about something else, although it is probably worth it only in the 120 horsepower flavor. The 90 bhp one is rarer than my moments of sobriety and the 150 horsepower one is such a random pile of bolts where nothing makes sense and nothing works.
- 2.0 Multijet of 165 horsepower – Ha ha, good luck finding something like this on the Fiat Bravo, mainly because it was launched when the Bravo was on it’s way out. And it’s pretty much the same discussion as with the 1.8 petrol, this engine was far too expensive for the Bravo.
Fiat Bravo General Issues
- The cable plugs can come off, especially on the engine. You just have to connect the plugs again and move on with your day as if nothing happened. Like when you throw trash on the street and then leave as if nothing happened. You should be ashamed of yourself and you should go, pick it up and put it in the trash can!
- The fuel tank safety system in case of impact cuts off the power supply and locks the tank. However, there is an additional passenger button to open the tank so you can move on. I do not mean that you can casually the leave the scene of a horrible accident, but to the fact that the system can be triggered even if you hit a kerb or something similarly small happens.
- For Multijet diesel engines, there are known issues with the EGR valve, which must be cleaned every 45,000 km and care must also be taken with the DPF that does not go well at all with urban traffic. Basically, standard procedure for modern diesels.
- The Blue & Me system does not recognize phones, does not work, does not want to work and does not want to see anything. It’s an old system that doesn’t want to sync with modern phones. The issue is valid for older Blue & Me models, the newer ones however should be able to see your latest smartphone and connect to it. Or the latest cheap smartphone, since you live frugally and modestly.
- Sport models….sorry…faster moving Fiat Bravos do not get a spare wheel but only a repair kit. This means that you also have room for a small bottle of LPG, because you want to go a lot, fast and cheap.
- For that one owner of a Fiat Bravo with automatic transmission in Europe, I recommend you change the oil every 60,000 km or 4 years. Plus that it’s not the most successful automatic transmission, rather reminiscent of VW automatic transmissions from the 2000s.
Fiat Bravo Verdict
A very good car in a pile of very dubious cars. A diamond in the mud for which you have to look for a lot and even harder. And here I am not addressing the sports or luxury enthusiasts, but I am addressing the ordinary people who want something cheap to transport them from place to place. Because here is the essence of Almost Car Reviews: A site (more of an septic tank) dedicated to ordinary people, who want to buy a car, want to get information, but do not want to get that much information that requires to browse forums and sign up for advanced mechanics lessons. People who will most probably never read this article.
I admit, I had fun writing this article. I admit, I am aware that no one will read this article. Which is very good, because I am tempted by a Fiat Bravo for myself, which will transport me around the city, reliably and cheap.
What engine do I recommend? For the average Fiat Bravo owner, a 90 horsepower 1.4 MPI is enough. For enthusiasts however, I clearly recommend the 1.4 150 horsepower T-Jet crate of muscles. Sure, it’s no BMW M3, but it still holds it’s own. I do not recommend diesel because the Fiat Bravo was and remains a city car with which you can occasionally go long distances, not the other way around.