Fiat Tipo station wagon (16-) preview

  • Looks practical
  • Low list price expected
  • Efficient diesel engine

Revising a name first seen on UK roads back in the ‘80s, the Fiat Tipo Estate represents a pragmatic choice. It’s similar in concept to the Skoda Octavia Estate along with rivalling the Kia Ceed Sportswagon and the Ford Focus Estate – low-cost family load-luggers that are cheap to buy and run.

The Italian brand is hoping this model has what it takes to appeal to both private and company car drivers, and as such has announced there will be a range of five engines with some offering relatively competitive running costs.

Huge boot and cabin

Practicality is a big part of the Tipo’s appeal. The estate version gets a 550-litre boot, which means only the Skoda’s along with the Peugeot 308 SW’s is bigger in this class, while there’s a further 12 litres of interior storage available in cubbies and compartments.

The rear seats have been built to accommodate three 6ft 3in adults sitting aside one other, so there should be loads of space inside the Tipo Estate. This was echoed by our correspondent who went out to the Geneva Motor Show to see the car’s unveiling first-hand. “It really is surprisingly big back there,” he enthused.

Range of engines and gearboxes

We’ve yet to see any official performance or efficiency figures for the Estate, but the hatchback is set to get a 1.6-litre ‘Multijet’ diesel emitting below 100g/km of CO2, which means low VED as well as company car tax. Usually there’s a minimal penalty in the conversion to an estate bodystyle, so we’re expecting this version will be almost as efficient.

Fuel economy for the diesel hatchback is a claimed 76.3mpg, making it an impressive car in that respect too, and the 1.6 can be specified with the TCT twin-clutch automatic gearbox that Alfa Romeo uses in the Giulietta and 4C sports car.

Other engine options are likely to include a 1.3-litre diesel along with a pair of 1.4-litre petrols - one with a turbocharger, one without – and a 1.6 petrol available exclusively with an automatic gearbox.

Trim levels with value in mind

Even base-spec Tipo Estates will come with a decent amount of equipment. We’re expecting three trims, and the lowest is going to get:

• Air-con

• DAB radio

• Bluetooth connectivity

• Steering wheel-mounted stereo controls

More information about the Tipo’s specification and performance will be available ahead of the car’s official launch in September 2016. Keep an eye out for the full Parkers Fiat Tipo Estate review coming soon.