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Fiat spruces up its Ducato line-up

Euro look: The Ducato has been designed for low operating costs.

Ducato commercial diesel range offers better economy, bigger payloads

27 Feb 2007

FIAT has launched its all-new Ducato commercial line-up with bigger payloads, larger interiors, more powerful and economical engines.

Buyers have the choice of two third-generation Euro IV compliant Multijet turbo diesel engines of 2.3-litre and 3.0-litre capacities, mated to six-speed gearboxes.

For the motor home market Fiat offers a 97kW 2.3 turbo-diesel.

The 2.3-litre JTD is a development of the previous Ducato engine, with increase performance and torque, as well as lower running costs.

Its 88kW is developed at 3200rpm and 320Nm at 2000rpm. The new 3.0-litre engine develops 115kW at 3500rpm and 400Nm from 1700rpm to 2500rpm.

The Ducato has been on sale locally since 2002 and has become a popular commercial as well as motor home option for buyers.

"As in other markets where it is a dominant player, it also took the motor home market by storm, with six local converters now using the Ducato prominently in their ranges, accounting for 60 per cent of total sales," according to the general manager for Fiat Commercial Vehicles in Australia, Chris Swann.

Payloads are up across the range, and interior volumes have increased from eight to 15 cubic metres.

Visually the new Ducato was designed by the Fiat Style Centre and borrows some passenger car cues. The designers have paid attention to aerodynamics, ensuring low cost repairs, as well as providing a functional interior.

The bumper is divided into three parts in order to ensure lower repair/replacement costs in the event of an accident.

The windscreen pillar rake also offers one of the best drag coefficients in its category (0.31) while sharp, squared-off lines contribute to a more linear load compartment with greater load volume.

Inside, there are new colours, fabrics and seat, dashboard and door panel designs.

36 center imageImportantly for its market the Ducato grows in size and also in load capacity (GVW and payload).

Models are now available with GVWs up to 4.0 tonnes and a payload of up to 2.0 tonnes. Depending on the model there are volumes up to 15 m3 and interior length of more than 4m.

Loading and unloading is made easier thanks to a reduced load platform height, down 300mm compared to the previous model.

Running costs have also been reduces with lower fuel consumption, up to 16 per cent less than the previous model, and increased service intervals (45,000km for a major service with oil and filer change at 22,500km).

Safety is also improved with crumple zones, new braking systems with four disc brakes, ABS with EBD and driver’s airbag throughout the range. The medium roof vans and the cab chassis have, additionally, a passenger airbag and ASR traction control.

The Ducato is available with 15-inch or 16-inch wheels and tyres gross vehicle weights from 3 tonnes to 4 tonnes payloads from 1500kg to 2000kg three wheelbases, three lengths and two heights for van versions plus three load compartment volumes from 8m3 to 15m3.

The commercial range consists of: low roof panel van medium 3000 mm wheelbase, 2.3-litre 88kW engine, 3510 GVM medium roof panel van long 3450mm wheelbase, 2.3-litre 88 kW engine, 4000 GVM medium roof panel van, extra long 4035mm wheelbase, 3.0-litre 115kW engine, 4000 GVM and cab chassis medium 3800mm wheelbase, 2.3-litre 88kW engine, 4000 GVM.

The motor home versions are "made to order only".

As with the previous range, the standard equipment list is extensive.

All versions are equipped with driver’s airbag, ABS with electronic brake force distribution (EBD), electric mirrors and remote control central locking, with a front passenger airbag and ASR traction control standard on the medium vans and the cab chassis.

Comfort is ensured with folding armrests for the driver and front passenger, power windows, cloth upholstery, CD player with steering wheel controls and heated rear windows in the rear doors.

Options include parking assistance and cruise control.

2007 Fiat Ducato pricing:
Low roof medium wheelbase van $39,450
Medium roof long wheelbase van $44,990
Medium roof extra-long wheelbase van $49,990
Cab chassis $42,990
Optional metallic paint $900

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