If you’re going on holiday to the Mediterranean next year, there’s a strong possibility that the taxi you get into at the airport will be one of these. Currently known as the Fiat Aegea Project, it is the Italian carmaker’s new smallish saloon for European, Middle Eastern and North African markets.
The Aegea replaces the aging, Grande Punto-based Linea, a favourite of taxi drivers across the Med. It’s about the same size as a Ford Focus, at 4.5 meters long. It was designed from the outset as a three-box saloon, the preferred bodystyle in most of the markets it will sell in, but a hatchback and estate will be spun off from it. The styling is a bit generic, but it’s much better looking that the old Linea.
Fiat hasn’t said what platform is underneath the Aegea, but it’s probably a version of that used by the 500L. They’ll be the usual choice of petrol and diesel engines, with manual or automatic gearboxes. It’ll be quite well equipped with Fiat’s latest Uconnect infotainment system.
The Aegea was unveiled at the Istanbul Motor Show earlier this week, a logical choice of venue as Turkey will be a major market for it – going on sale in November – and it will be built there, as well. Fiat has made over 4 million cars in Turkey since production started there in 1968.
It’s highly unlikely the Aegea – or whatever it’s called when it goes on sale – will come to the UK. Fiat dropped the slow-selling, mid-size Bravo hatchback some time ago to concentrate on the aspirational 500 family and utilitarian Panda.
By Only Motors