The Fiat Tipo Station Wagon is an affordable small estate car with a big boot and a decent amount of equipment but it doesn’t drive as well as more upmarket alternatives.
The Fiat Tipo Station Wagon is a more spacious alternative to the standard Tipo hatchback. It doesn’t look or feel as special as the Ford Focus Estate or Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer, but it is roomy, practical and costs less to buy than those alternatives.
The standard Fiat Tipo is one of the more forgettable hatchbacks on sale, and the Station Wagon’s boxier back end does little to improve things. High-spec cars get a few shiny chrome trims below the windows and around the grille, but neither these – nor the metal C-shaped frames around the foglights – are quite enough to make the Tipo Station Wagon stand out.
Step inside, and this slightly bland theme continues. Sure, the Fiat Tipo Station Wagon’s interior is neatly laid out and all the heating controls are easy to use, but none of the materials feels quite as nice as in the Vauxhall and Ford and you can’t spice things up with any brightly coloured trims like in the smaller Fiat 500 hatchback.
The Fiat Tipo Station Wagon’s infotainment display isn’t much to shout about either. All but the most basic models get a 5-inch screen but it doesn’t look as smart as the Ford’s unit and isn’t particularly intuitive to use.
The Fiat Tipo Station Wagon comes with height-adjustable front seats as standard so there’s plenty of space for you to get comfy. There’s enough room in the back for two adults or three kids to stretch out, but the Ford Focus Estate has significantly more knee room and its central seat doesn’t feel quite as cramped.
The Fiat Tipo Station Wagon isn’t an exciting car to look at, but it is an affordable means to move lots of luggage and a few passengers around.
It’s a similar story when you come to load the Fiat Tipo Station Wagon’s boot. There’s space for a few suitcases or a baby buggy, but the Ford Focus Estate and VW Golf Estate are roomier still. Flip the back seats down and there’s space to slide a bike into the Tipo Station Wagon’s flat load bay, however, and you get a few storage trays either side to stop smaller items rolling about.
If you plan to regularly fill your Tipo Station Wagon’s boot and head to the tip, pick a 1.6-litre diesel engine. It’s not quite as smooth as the diesel engines you can get in alternatives but it won’t cost a great deal to run – especially if you do a lot of motorway miles. If you prefer pottering around town to lapping up long journeys, pick one of the two 1.4-litre petrol engines instead.
Unfortunately, the Fiat Tipo Station Wagon’s six-speed manual gearbox feels a little notchy to use and the optional automatic unit doesn’t change down with any great urgency when you want to accelerate hard to overtake slow-moving traffic.
You’ll hear more wind and tyre noise at speed in the Fiat Tipo Station Wagon than in the Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer and Ford Focus Estate and you can’t get it with as many advanced safety features, either.
That being said, the Fiat Tipo Station Wagon will set you back significantly less than these cars, so it makes a good option if you’re looking for a spacious small car on a fairly tight budget. Check out our Fiat Tipo Station Wagon deals to see how much you can save on one.