Between unveiling the 600 and Topolino, it's safe to say Fiat has had a busy week. There's more to come from the Italian arm of Stellantis as a next-generation Panda will finally debut on July 11, but not next Tuesday as the premiere is locked in for the same day and month of 2024. It's not a random date since the automaker will celebrate its 125th anniversary next year. The disclosure was made by CEO Olivier Francois in an interview with Autocar.
The head honcho believes there's room in the lineup for another subcompact model that won't clash with the revival of the Seicento. Francois mentioned it'll have a Skoda-esque "simply clever" approach to serve as a "cool, popular, affordable" car in the same spirit as older versions of the cutesy city car. There have only been three generations of the Panda, launched in 1980, 2003, and 2011. Last month, a 4x40° special edition was introduced to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the all-wheel-drive model, introduced in 1983.
Fiat Concept Centoventi at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show
It is believed the new Panda has the Dacia Sandero in its sights, specifically the Stepway derivative. Fiat's boss mentions it'll be a global model with styling cues derived from the Centoventi. Pictured here, the concept is already more than four years old, having debuted in March 2019 at the Geneva Motor Show. Like the new 600, it's expected to ride on the CMP platform and could offer both hybrid and electric powertrains.
While the reborn Seicento is 4.17 meters (164.1 inches) long, the fourth-gen Panda is said to be slightly shorter, at around 4 meters (157.4 inches). To keep the price down, the electric version will eschew the concept car's swappable batteries. Logic tells us the Panda EV is unlikely to be cheaper than the 500e (€28,950 in Italy) but it should undercut the 600e (€35,950).
Fiat's other small crossover, the 500X, will continue for the time being.