When the Bravo was launched in November 2010, the middle hatches segment told another story: the Hyundai i30’s domination, which had arrived just over a year ago, and encountered struggling opponents such as the Astra, the Fourth Golf Generation, the Peugeot 307 and Focus – justice be done, the second generation Focus was two years old. The Fiat, despite having taken three years to reach Brazil, brought all the freshness of novelty to the segment, even more with the T-Jet version, turbinated and with six gearshift. At that time, the concept of downsizing was just an embryo and dual clutch exchange was really expensive car thing.
Since then, it was only a little over four years. But all the containers changed: the Cruze, the new generations of the Golf, the Focus and the i30, the Peugeot 308 arrived. Downsizing, ultra-high strength metals, dual clutch gearbox, aluminum blocks, variable controls, direct injection, Stability control – some of the cards they brought to the game.
Suddenly, the Bravo was seen as an old school guy (in Europe he was discontinued last year), no more his old enemies and approaching his window of product cycle. Renewing it was not an option, but an obligation – ideally, accompanied by an evolution in the packaging of equipment, some technological update and maintaining the price, exactly as it was done in Linea. Was the mission fulfilled by the veteran, who is calling himself “2016” in the middle of February 2015?
Whether or not to like something is opinion, but it is undeniable that the facelift in Bravo was run with class and gave a good refreshed in its lines. The strategy was the same one used in the Linea: to bring robustness, sportiness and perception of horizontalization – the latter, obtained by the lower wide mouth, decorated with a continuous frieze. Headlights and flashlights have been reworked and won black masks (except the Essence version), side skirts, bumper and grille are brand new as well as the wheels and decorative stickers on the side. The back cover emblem also gained new spelling.
Internally, the great novelty was the adoption of the multimedia system Uconnect Touch, known by Freemont, standard in all versions, with a touch screen of 5 “(one inch more would be very welcome), voice commands and buttons on the steering wheel , Audio streaming, and the ability to play both back-up and browser images (both optional). In addition, the instruments gained new spelling and lighting, the coating materials were repaginated and an armrest was incorporated with a cup holder built into the rear seat.
Ergonomically, the Bravo offers a good driving position, but we can not call it a sports car because it is something higher than the Golf or the Focus, for example. The seat side supports are good, the steering column offers a reasonable range of settings (to be perfect, it would have to go down a bit more) and the pedals, with good load and well positioned, facilitate a lot of tip-tacco operation. But the shift lever has a subtle resistance at the time of engagement that limits the speed of change.
Life for the back passengers is pretty decent. Ventilation output between the seats, good slope of the backrest, long seat and comfortable space for the knees of someone over 1.80 m. The trunk has 400 liters.
Versions, equipment and prices
There were no changes to the mechanical set: the three versions aspirated (Essence, Sporting and Blackmotion – replacing Absolute) continue with the 1.8 16V e.Torq Evo 132 hp at 5,250 rpm and 18,9 mkgf of torque at 4,500 rpm (numbers with (Dualogic Plus optional), and T-Jet follows with its 1.4 turbocharged, with 152 hp at 5,500 rpm and 21,1 mkgf of torque between 2,250 and 4,500 rpm (23 mkgf with the overbooster Activated), always with the six-speed manual gearbox.
Performance: 1.8 16V reaches 100 km/h in 9.9 s, with a maximum of 193 km/h. The T-Jet does zero at 100 km/in 8.7 s, top speed of 206 km/h.
Essence (R $ 61,990): features a Uconnect Touch multimedia console, single zone analogue air conditioning, 16 “alloy wheels with Pirelli Cinturato P7 205/55 tires, electric steering, multifunctional leather-wrapped steering wheel, Four-wheel disc, cruise control, cruise control, dual air bag and ABS brakes.
Sporting (R $ 67,990): has Essence items, plus 17 “alloy wheels with Goodyear Eagle Excellence 215/45 tires, Skydome electric sunroof, spring loaded suspension, shock absorbers and stabilizer bars, headlights with mask Black, black interior and double exhaust tip.
Blackmotion ($ 68,990) replaces Absolute as the top-of-the-line 1.8 1.8V. Its Uconnect Touch multimedia center brings TomTom GPS navigator (optional in others), dual zone digital air conditioning, leather-lined seats, R17 wheels with exclusive design, rear parking sensor, suspension version of the Sporting version and black details (Such as the base of the front plate and the rear view mirrors).
T-Jet (R $ 78,490): incorporates all Sporting items, plus dual zone digital air conditioning, another R17 wheel design, rear parking sensor, hill holder, traction control and stability.
Optional (note that some of them come standard in certain versions): electric sunroof (R $ 5,350), leather-coated seats (R $ 2,484), package with a rear camera, twilight, rain and rear parking sensors, folding (R $ 3,410), set with seven airbags (R $ 3,570).
Another novelty in this year’s model is Mopar’s optional equipment catalog (Dodge fans have not yet grown accustomed to this association). Well, for the time being you can not buy an enveloped Bravo, with a 40mm recessed suspension and diamond-studded leather seats like this one down there – a concept created by Mopar – but there are several items that can already be bought .
The list of Mopar options is, say, more mundane: rear-view mirrors with rear camera, rain gutters, trampoline and bench trampoline, carpet or rubber mats, roof rack, three wheel sets Side skirts, exhaust tips, chrome side fenders, sill guards, unique keys and wheel nuts with anti-theft bolts. But the brand is studying acceptance of the bolder items of this concept to make a decision. You’ll know what the future holds for us …
Finding the Bravo T-Jet is also rediscovering how the behavior of turbocharged engines was not long ago. Although it is 1.4 turbo, there is not much of a comparison to what the industry has done in recent years, with varying controls and manifolds, dual flow turbos and direct injection. The result is that below 2,500 rpm, the T-Jet’s response is comparable to that of an aspirated engine. You need to get some cool on the throttle to make the 1.4 turbocharger turn on – and when that happens, it comes accompanied by a smile-filled turbine hum, a sound that pretty much disappeared into the current downsized, like the Golf 1.4 and BMW 1 Series. This leaves the experience so tasty that you even give a discount to the vertical torque curve.
If it’s a shame that Fiat could not adopt the 1.4 T-Jet Multiair that equips the Alfa MiTo (170 hp, direct injection and variable controls), on the other hand, the good side of the 1.4 T-Jet being old school is that it Allows a number of modifications impossible on current engines such as turbine replacement – today engines like Golf 1.4 bring the turbine housing integrated into the exhaust manifold, which in turn is integrated into the head. There are those who take more than 250 hp Bravos and T-Jet Points without risk of breakage and without neuroses with ECUs.
The suspension of the T-Jet is the same as Sporting. There is a little more load on the shock absorbers, springs and the stabilizer bars are a bit thicker. You feel the suspension working faster and absorbing less displacement the vertical oscillations as well as better containing the body roll. But in fact, this load gain does not quite make it hard like a Citroën DS3 or a Golf GTi. In fact, the T-Jet somewhat resembles the new Focus, with an elegant suspension fit, which allows relaxed use on bumpy streets without dry beats. It’s a simply delicious car to rotate, even on bad ground, and it’s very well balanced dynamically.
Unfortunately, Goodyear Excelence tires fall short of what the T-Jet would need. Despite weighing 1,435 kg (remember, it is a 2007 project) and if there is some body movement, there is good dynamic potential for Bravo to give work to all this new generation. It does everything the T-Jet Punto can do, but with more dynamic elegance. In a short stretch of mountain that accelerated the T-Jet, in the region of Atibaia (SP), with both rain and dry track, it was clear that the tires were the bottleneck: the car was far above that. Even with torsion rear axle system, the vehicle absorbed irregularities in the asphalt without oscillations in the trajectory or between the axes.
Fiat focused on updating Bravo’s style, and I have no doubt that they were successful at it. But the niche of sportswear has changed completely since 2010, so that for the T-Jet to be able to fight with what exists today in the market, you will have to give up the factory warranty and fuck in the pussy. A remapping of the ECU, possible turbine replacement, lower sports springs and tires suited for sporting use are almost mandatory for you to feel what this guy really could do if mechanics had been perfected along with style. This segment has become so more aggressive in recent years that, in fact, the Bravo T-Jet would be an excellent Sporting or Blackmotion. In the real world, the one you go to work every day and not to Nürburgring Nordschleife, this guy is a close companion.
Considering that Bravo was the linterninha of its segment in 2014 (according to Fenabrave, there were 21,859 Focus, 17,049 Cruze, 16,118 Golf, 5,574,308, 5,180 i30 and 4,436 Bravo), there was strong expectation that Fiat would adopt Same strategy adopted in Linea 2015: make a good facelift, fatten the list of equipment and maintain or even reduce the price. In this way, cost-effectiveness is raised to a position where the age of the project and its inherent disadvantages (greater weight and consumption, material mismatch and mechanical and safety solutions) depart from the buyer’s equation as the vehicle becomes To fight more with the top-of-the-line in the lower category than with their own. The impulse to buy gets bigger and the project’s own age is in favor, because less is paid, the advantages of a mature and well-resourced project polished for years and more are taken, Soft seasoning of novelty that every facelift brings.
The expectation was partially fulfilled. The Bravo became more visually interesting, it gained equipment, but the most important part – the pocket – unbalanced the taste of the purchase. It was more expensive in all versions: Essence increased by R $ 3,641 (its price was R $ 58,349), Sporting by R $ 4,059 (before R $ 63,931) and T-Jet by R $ 3,770 : R $ 74,720).
At Essence, its price is still clearly advantageous compared to the Cruze, 308, Focus and Golf in terms of package, but especially in relation to the latter two, there is a lag of platform technology, features, mechanics and design that would not be disgusting case The Bravo had stayed on the same level of money. In this sense, T-Jet is too close to Golf 1.4 TSi in price – according to the brand’s advice, one of the obstacles is the cost of importing the mechanical assembly (engine, gearbox and electronic Low real appreciation) and its low volume makes its local production unfeasible.
In this scenario, the Bravo Essence is the option that makes the most sense in the price – but it has analog air-conditioning, dual air bag only (the set of seven bags is optional), does not have standard parking sensors and the wheels rim 16 And the lights without a black mask take away some of the grace. Sporting and Blackmotion should appeal to buyers who are sympathetic to the new design, the excellent running comfort and the package of vitaminized equipment, but are unwilling to invest more and acquire something more modern. The network of more than 600 dealers also counts points.
The T-Jet, which has always been a niche car, should be even more reserved for the Fiat enthusiast’s niche because its price puts him in a position of clear disadvantage compared to the new crop of spicy competitors that have since appeared. In case you are an outsider (they will always have our support …) and want to take the Italian heart-driven hatch and six-speed manual gearbox to the house, bicker for price at the dealership – make it happen in fact the advantage that did not come in the official table . After all, the market is not for fish. And remember that being old-timer is not just addictions: the product is at its most mature and you will hardly have headaches.