Following its Australian unveiling at the Brisbane International Motor Show earlier this year, the all-new Fiat Ritmo is now in Australia’s Fiat dealerships, providing a new level of performance, style and Italian flair in the small car market.
“Along with the new Fiat 500, the Ritmo redefines Fiat’s position in the Australian market,” says Edward Butler, General Manager for Fiat cars in Australia. “In a market sector that rarely offers customers cars that offer styling flair, the Fiat Ritmo is a breath of fresh air that makes a statement as strong as Punto and the new 500 in their market sectors.
“The Ritmo’s style is supported by design and technology of real integrity, from its five star EuroNCAP crash test rating to its choice of two of the most advanced engines available on the Australian market, as well as the Blue&Me communications system a joint venture between Fiat and Microsoft that is the benchmark for automotive telematics.”
“The Ritmo is powered by two unique engines, the new 1.4 litre T-Jet Turbo petrol engine that pumps out 110 kW and which offers the ability to provide more acceleration literally at the press of a button, and the acclaimed 1.9 litre JTD Multijet diesel. Equipment levels are lavish and pricing is keen, so the Ritmo will enable Fiat to take the next step up in our growth plans for the marque in Australia.”
“The Fiat Ritmo,” says Mr Butler, “is a car that appeals to both the brain and the heart, not to mention, with prices starting at an RRP of $29,990 for a fully equipped Ritmo, the wallet, too.”
Initially Fiat will offer four versions of the Ritmo in Australia, with additional models to arrive in 2008, including self-shifting gearbox versions. The two trim and equipment levels, Emotion and Sport, are offered with a choice of the advanced 1.4 litre 110 kW T-Jet petrol engine and the 1.9 litre 110 kW JTD Turbo Diesel, with prices starting with a recommended retail price of $29,990 for the Fiat Ritmo Emotion T-Jet.
Augmenting an interior design founded on the fundamental pre-requisites of class-leading space, exemplary build quality, and visual and tactile sophistication, the new Fiat’s equipment specification has been carefully considered to simplify and enhance life on board. Interior trim is not just good to look at; it also provides a wonderful tactile experience, with different textures to delight on touch for interior trim and upholstery.
Both Emotion and Sport versions are fully equipped, offering electric windows and exterior mirrors, cruise control, power steering, remote central locking, an advanced audio system, AirCon, alloy wheels and a host of other features as standard.
As befits its name, the Sport adds comprehensive performance orientated equipment package, including rear spoiler; sideskirts; Climate Control AirCon; sports pedals; front sports seats with lumbar adjustment of driver’s seat; leather sports steering wheel, gear lever and handbrake knobs; sports upholstery, red brake callipers and 17” sports alloys with 225/45 tyres.
The Sport versions also come with the innovative Blue&Me integrated telematics system developed in a joint venture with Microsoft, which has proven so popular that more than 20 per cent of Fiat vehicles sold in Europe are now equipped with it. In simple terms, it offers hands-free system with Bluetooth™ technology with steering wheel controls, instrument panel with multifunction display, MP3 audio file player from a USB port and SMS text reader.
While right is fully endowed with Italian ‘brio’ and spirit, it is also supported by cutting edge design and development technology that ensures that its beauty is also more than matched by brains.
The new Ritmo, using a name derived from the Italian word for rhythm was created in just 18 months from design ‘freeze’ to production. To achieve this record-breaking development time, Fiat employed new, groundbreaking, state-of-the-art Computer Aided Design (CAD) and Computer Aided Engineering (CAE) systems of unprecedented power and complexity, allowing the development of this new hatchback to be undertaken almost entirely through virtual analysis and engineering.
So sophisticated is the computer software involved, that not only could Fiat’s engineers simulate every aspect of the Ritmo’s structural, dynamic, NVH and accommodation characteristics to a level of unprecedented detail, but they were also able to create a virtual production-line to ensure consistently outstanding component and build quality.
The benefits of these all-encompassing developments in virtual design and engineering are clearly evident in every aspect of the new Fiat Ritmo, from consistently high build quality and class-leading passenger accommodation, to superior driving dynamics, minimal NVH levels and, of course, outstanding safety provision.
The new Ritmo has been awarded a maximum 5-star rating for adult occupant protection in the gruelling Euro NCAP crash test programme.
Achieving 5 stars for adult occupant safety, 3 stars for child protection and a further 2 for pedestrian protection, the new Fiat recorded 33 points, placing it among the leaders of its category in terms of passive, active and preventive safety.
The 1.4 litre T-Jet 110 kW turbocharged petrol engine, makes its debut in the Ritmo. This is the second example of a new family of turbocharged petrol units developed by Fiat Powertrain Technologies to combine the sporting performance and low NVH characteristics of a petrol engine with fuel economy comparable to a diesel unit and CO2 emission levels which readily comply with increasingly stringent European regulation.
Through cubic capacity downsizing allied to the adoption of the smallest possible turbocharger, Fiat’s responsive new 110 kW 1.4 litre T-Jet engine combines performance equal to or better than a conventionally aspirated 1.8/2.0 litre petrol engine, but with a reduction of between 10% and 20% in fuel consumption and emissions.
The T-Jet engine offers an ‘overboost’ button located on the centre console in Sport versions, will deliver an impressive 230 Nm at 3000 rpm, endowing the Ritmo with a 0-100 kmh acceleration time of 8.2 seconds and a top speed of 208 kmh. Notwithstanding such lively performance, this superbly responsive powerplant will still return 7.1 l/100 km in the combined cycle and restrict CO2 emissions to just 167 g/km.
The 110 kW 1.9 litre MultiJet unit in the new Ritmo boasts an impressive 305 Nm torque delivered at just 2000 rpm, allowing acceleration from 0-100 kmh in just 9.0 seconds and a top speed of 209 kmh, whilst returning a fuel consumption of less than 5.6 litres in the combined cycle.
With a 5-star Euro NCAP safety rating to its name, the new Fiat Ritmo builds on an already impressive safety portfolio with the full range of braking, traction control and stability systems available on the market today: ABS anti-lock brakes, complete with electronic brakeforce distribution, ASR to limit wheel spin during acceleration, MSR to modulate engine brake torque whilst changing down, and a sophisticated ESP to control vehicle stability through bends, which includes hydraulic brake assistance and a Hill Holder function to facilitate smooth hill starts.“The new Fiat 500 not withstanding, the Fiat Ritmo is probably the most important car that Fiat will launch this year,” says Edward Butler. “It launches Fiat into a key market sector, one which not just contains some of the key models in the market as a whole, but also which, as the market downsizes in response to environment issues and fuel prices, is becoming the most important Australian market sector. The Fiat Ritmo has the abilities to take on the key players in the market and its Italian soul will offer car buyers a car that is fresh, vital and dynamic, while being backed by state of the art safety, reliability and durability. We believe it makes a compelling case and represents one of the strongest models in its category.”
|Fiat Ritmo T-Jet||Fiat Ritmo Multijet|
|ENGINE||T-Jet 1.4 16V 110 kW||MJET 1.9 16V 110 KW|
|No. of cylinders, arrangement||4, in line, front, transverse||4, in line, front transverse|
|Bore x stroke (mm)||72.0 x 84.0||82.0 x 90.4|
|Max. power output EC: kW (bhp) at rpm||150 (110) @ 5500 rpm||110 (150) at 4000 rpm|
|Peak torque EC: Nm (kgm) at rpm||206 (152) @ 2250 rpm||305 (31) at 2000 rpm|
|SPORT: 230 (170) @ 3000 rpm|
|Emissions compliance||Euro 4||Euro 4|
|Emissions control||three-way catalytic converter in engine compartment, 2 lambda probes, EOBD||2 oxidising catalysers (in engine bay and under body), electrical EGR valve, EOBD|
|Timing (drive)||DOHC with hydraulic tappets||2 OHC (toothed belt), hydraulic tappets (indirect roller drive)|
|Fuel system||timed, sequential electronic with fixed geometry turbocharger||direct injection, Common Rail Multijet with electronic control, variable geometry turbo and intercooler|
|Gearbox, no. of speeds||6 + Reverse||6 + Reverse|
|Battery: capacity (Ah)||60 Ah||60 Ah|
|Type||Rack and pinion with dualdrive electric power assistance|
|Turning circle between kerbs (m)||10.4||10.4|
|BRAKES - D (disc) with ABS|
|Front: Ø mm||D 284 x 26 mm||D 281 X 26 mm (ventilated)|
|Rear: Ø mm||D 251 x 10 mm||D 251 X 10 mm|
|Front||independent MacPherson, dual rate telescopic dampers, anti-roll bar with spherical joint con rods|
|Rear||interconnected wheels with torsion rear axle, telescopic dampers, anti-roll bar|
|WHEELS||Emotion: Alloy 16 x 7J||Emotion: Alloy 16 x 7J|
|Sport: Alloy 17 x 7J||Sport: Alloy 17 x 7J|
|Tyres||Emotion: 205/55 R16 91V||Emotion: 205/55 R16 91V|
|Sport: 225/45 R17 91V||Sport: 225/45 R17 91V|
|Front/rear track (mm)||1538/1532||1538/1532|
|Height empty (mm)||1498||1498|
|Luggage compartment capacity VDA (dm3):||400||400|
|with rear seat folded down||1175||1175|
|SUPPLIES - WEIGHTS|
|Fuel tank (|)||58||58|
|Kerb weight DIN (kg)||1275||1360|
|Max. towable weight (kg)||1300||1300|
|PERFORMANCE - CONSUMPTION|
|Top speed (km/h)||208||209|
|Acceleration (s): 0 - 100 km/h||8.5/8.2 with overboost||9|
|Consumption - EC Dir. 1999/100 (l/100 km)|
|out of town||5.8||4.5|
|Combined CO2 emissions (g/km)||167||149|
|· Fiat Ritmo Multijet Emotion||· Fiat Ritmo Multijet Sport|
|· Fiat Ritmo T-Jet Emotion||· Fiat Ritmo T-Jet Sport|
|LINE AND STYLING|
|Body-coloured external door handles||NA||STD|
|Chrome-plated external door handles||STD||NA|
|Heated door mirrors with outdoor temperature sensors||STD||STD|
|Chrome inserts on waistline||STD||STD|
|17 inch 15 Spoke Sporty Design Alloy Wheels with 225/45 tyres||NA||STD|
|17 inch Emotion Design Alloy wheels with 205/55 tyres||STD||NA|
|Painted brake calipers||NA||STD|
|Chrome-plated exhaust tip||STD||STD|
|Leather-covered sporty steering wheel, gear lever||NA||STD|
|and hand brake lever knobs|
|Leather steering wheel and gear lever knob||STD||NA|
|Sports instrument graphics||NA||STD|
|Metallic black interior door handles||STD||NA|
|Chrome-plated interior door handles||NA||STD|
|Chrome-plated air vent trims||STD||STD|
|Chrome inserts on door armrest||STD||STD|
|Chrome-plated rings on instrument panels||STD||STD|
|Chrome-plated frames on interior door handle trims||STD||STD|
|Facia with carbon-look band||STD||STD|
|Fiat Code (electronic antitheft device)||STD||STD|
|Electric front windows with||STD||STD|
|automatic function and anti-pinch device|
|Electric rear windows with anti-pinch system||STD||STD|
|Remote rear door opening/closing control||STD||STD|
|Electrical release of rear tailgate with||STD||STD|
|Follow me home light device||STD||STD|
|Front ceiling light with spotlight||STD||STD|
|Rear ceiling light||STD||STD|
|'Night Design' light effect on handles and ceiling light||STD||STD|
|Courtesy mirrors on sunshades||STD||STD|
|Illuminated mirror on passenger side sunshade||STD||STD|
|Illuminated luggage compartment||STD||STD|
|12 Volt socket in luggage compartment||STD||STD|
|Instrument panel with trip computer and my car system||STD||STD|
|Central console with glass holder||STD||STD|
|Front seat armrest withrefrigerated locker||STD||STD|
|Height-adjustable driver’s seat||STD||STD|
|Storage unit under passenger seat||STD||STD|
|Manual lumbar adjustment of driver’s seat||STD||STD|
|Front seats with extra support and sports upholstery||NA||STD|
|Squab-back pocket on front passenger seat||STD||STD|
|Split rear seat (3-seater) 60/40||STD||STD|
|Height adjustable front and rear head-restraints||STD||STD|
|Third height-adjustable rear head-restraint||STD||STD|
|Load restraint hooks in luggage compartment||STD||STD|
|AirCon, Automatic dual-zone climate system||NA||STD|
|Rear air vents||STD||STD|
|Dualdrive™ electric power steering||STD||STD|
|Sky Dome: electrically opening large glass sunroof||Opt||Opt|
|Sports pack (spoiler; sideskirts; chrome waistline trim; special pedals; lumbar adjustment of driver’s seat; leather steering wheel, gear lever and handbrake knobs; sports upholstery; 17” alloys with 225/45 tyres)||NA||STD|
|ABS + EBD (Electronic Brake Distribution)||STD||STD|
|Front airbags with dual stage Smart system||STD||STD|
|Rear seat-belts with pre-tensioners||STD||STD|
|Front seat-belts with pre-tensioners, load limiters||STD||STD|
|and fastening sensor|
|FPS (Fire Prevention System)||STD||STD|
|Child safety locks||STD||STD|
|ESP Electronic stability control + ASR/MSR,||STD||STD|
|HBA and Hill Holder|
|Foglights with adaptive cornering function||STD||STD|
|Radio with CD + MP3 player, HiFi 40 W audio system, 4 speakers + 2 tweeters (water resistant technology)||STD||STD|
|6-key radio controls on steering wheel||STD||STD|
|Blue&Me™: hands-free system with Bluetooth™ technology with steering wheel controls, instrument panel with multifunction display, MP3 audio file player from USB port and SMS text reader||NA||STD|
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