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The new Panda 4×4 has been awarded its first major magazine award, SUV of the Year in the prestigious 2012 Top Gear Awards.

Judges put the latest 4×4 version of Fiat’s popular Panda ahead of many very capable and far more expensive SUV’s, it was praised on its ride, comfort and off-road ability.

Its award-winning cyclinder 0.9 TwinAir engine, coupled with its manual six speed transmission was given a special mention for giving excellent off-road traction and phenomenal grip on slopes.

It’s good off-road. Sure, it might not have fancy locking diffs, but there’s a clever electronic traction system, ample ground clearance and a low first gear,” says the Top Gear judging panel.

“Traction on slopes is remarkable, partly because the tyres are suitable, and partly because the Panda is light enough that there isn’t much gravitational pull to defy. But it’s got other talents. Long motorway hauls aren’t torture if you opt for the six-speed TwinAir version.”

“This is the third edition of an outstanding car that has sold more than 6.5 million examples, and the 4×4 version has always been an important part of the mix,” says Elena Bernardelli, marketing director, Fiat Group Automobiles UK Ltd. “Already we are receiving great reports from the media and plenty of interest from customers.

“And to receive such an important award for Panda 4×4 is fantastic news – especially when the recognition comes from such an influential organisation. I hope this is the first of many more honours for Panda 4×4.”

The new Panda 4×4 is available with a 1.3 MultiJet 2 Turbo diesel engine as well as a petrol TwinAir unit. Standard Features on the new Panda 4×4 include Start&Stop with Gear Shift Indicator (GSI), for better fuel economy.  The car returns 60.1 mpg on the MultiJet 2 version and 57.6mpg for the TwinAir, on the official Combined Cycle. The CO2 is just 125g/km on the Multijet 2 version and 114g/km for the TwinAir.

Prices for the Panda 4×4 start at under £14,000 which represents huge value for money, especially with it standard features which include air-conditioning, ESP stability control ELD locking differential, smoked finish 15-inch alloy wheels, driver, passenger and window airbags, height-adjustable driver’s seat, radio/CD/MP3 with six speakers, and protective side mouldings.

The Fiat Panda 4×4 will be in our showrooms soon, feel free to contact us at any of our  Fiat branches, Darlington, Middlesbrough or York, for more information.

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