Fiat Linea T-Jet Review: Bold n Beautiful
Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Giorgio Armani have something in common and that is art. Other than art, they all belong to a country where exquisite for most is considered normal. Italians are known for their attention to detail. The world notices this trend with respect to Ferrari, Lamborghini and Maseratti etc. They go beyond the normal automobiles and leave everyone spell bound with their class and finesse.
One of the famous Italian car makers to enter India was Fiat. The company had a tie up with Premier Automobiles Limited and sold models like the 1100 Delight and the 137D. It was very popular in its era and just had Hindustan Motors to compete with. As time flew and more car makers entered, Fiat started losing its sheen.
But then when you have a strong legacy, it is difficult to fade away. Fiat India presently sells two beautiful cars, the Grande Punto and Linea. The car maker is not very aggressive but then it has its share of tricks up its sleeve. It maybe tough to associate elegance with aggression for most people but the Linea T-Jet seems to prove otherwise. We find out more about the Linea T-Jet in our review.
It seems the Linea was not designed by engineers but by an artist in the serene meadows of Italy. In modern times, where aggression and fierce looking cars are in vogue, the Linea chooses to illustrate relaxed lines.
This voluptuous looking sedan is the biggest in its class. Designed in ““Centro Stile Fiat”, the design centre in Turin, the Linea is based on the same platform as Grande Punto. Both the cars have the same design philosophy where the classic styling meets the modern trend.
A facelift for the existing Linea is just round the corner. It gets a grand radiator grille with inter linked slats. The large headlights with twin barrel lamps look very elegant. The bonnet does not feature unnecessary crease lines and just flows to the windshield. It also offers rain sensing wipers and dark sensing auto headlights. The T-Jet badging also features on the radiator grille which looks like a typical RS-esque of Skoda.
The long stretched look of the Linea makes it look very subtle yet impressive. It also offers a ground clearance of 185mm which is the best for tackling bad roads. It gets chrome under window line as well as chrome lines on the doors too. The ORVMs are very nicely planted on the front doors and are body coloured. These mirrors can be adjusted electrically. It could have done with turn indicators embedded in them but perhaps the Italians thought it would spoil the design.
Since this is the T-Jet variant, it gets a boot lid spoiler and chrome exhaust to highlight its sporty nature. The exhaust pipe does not blend well with the overall design as it sticks out in a weird way. But overall, the Linea comes across as a very beautiful car to look at. It is a welcome change over the out-of-the-production-line looking types.
It feels very plush and premium inside. The contrasting beige and black interiors go very well. Even the leather clad seats are very comfortable for all passengers. The front legroom is grand and it tucks in all the passengers very neatly. It also has decent headroom space and can easily accommodate taller passengers.
The leather wrapped steering wheel is only tilt adjustable but then the knee room space does not feel suffocated. The central area divides the front space into two individual zones. The driver also gets a foldable armrest which also has a storage option underneath. The steering wheel also features controls to adjust volume and operate Bluetooth telephony.
The instrumental cluster is simple with light colours. The information display on the instrumental panel shows information about the trip reading, Fuel efficiency, temperature and the distance to empty fuel tank. In addition to this, it also shows the last call made, phonebook and also has a message reader. One can also access the in-car settings by pressing a button underneath the right side of the steering column.
The central panel has an integrated music system with 6 speakers. The fit and finish quality is typically Fiat so no complaining on that one. The ebony black grainy dashboard is grand with chrome inserts running across it.
There are cup holders on the central area and also it gets a spacious glove box which also has the USB plug in option. The position of this plug in is convenient if you don’t juggle between portable drives often.The rear passengers get a drop down armrest which has pull-out cup holders. The boot section offers 500 litres of generous luggage space.
We had driven the earlier petrol variant earlier and were satisfied with its performance. The Linea back then was very matured and tamed. The relaxed design and the luxurious interiors went well with the controlled behaviour of this car.
But for this review, we chose the 1368cc 16 valve T-JET variant. On paper it sounds very powerful especially as it churns out 114 PS at 5000 rpm and 207 Nm at 2200 rpm. Fiat sadly does not offer automatic transmission on any of its models in India even though they sit on the premium side of the segment. This too comes with a 5 speed manual transmission.
The T-Jet engine is not at all audible when cranked and can fool anyone about its gentle character. Press the pedal hard and the dangling rev counter paired with the power spitting exhaust get active. The Linea T-Jet indeed offers the most powerful engine compared to the City, Verna and the Fiesta.
Settle down in the driver’s seat and shift the manual stick, the petrol head motor does not waste time in getting the party started. Even in the initial engine speeds, the T-Jet motor produces enough power to make way in city traffic. Even on highways, it feels very confident.
It is not the power delivery which will leave you impressed but the pull back torque of 207Nm which sounds similar to a typical diesel unit of a similar displacement. Even at higher engine speeds, the T-Jet just keeps pulling till the red line. The superb engine performance is also complimented by the hydraulic steering wheel which is very precise in handling the car.
A small letdown which is very surprising is the Linea T-Jet weighs 20 kgs more than the MultiJet diesel. Conventionally a petrol car is often lighter than the diesel variant. The car does feel heavy around the corners. It also gets bigger 16 inch wheels which not only makes the car look good but also delivers a better ride.
The suspension setup is as best as it can be in this segment. Be it broken roads, speed breakers etc nothing feels uncomfortable. The soft spring suspensions can absorb anything. Even at high speeds, the car seems very much planted on the road and does not drift away when thrown on tight corners.
Braking of Linea is decent similar to the other variants. If you enjoy driving petrol cars, then the Linea is definitely a car one would enjoy driving. It scores very high on fun factor but then the fuel efficiency is the least compared to other versions. The company claims an ARAI mileage of 15.7 Kmpl whereas we got a realistic 10 kmpl.
|Variant||1.4L T-Jet PETROL|
|Engine Capacity (L)/Cylinder||1368/4|
|Dimensions in mm|
|Turning circle radius (M)||5.4|
|Fuel Tank capacity (L)||45|
|Claimed fuel efficiency (Kmpl)||15.7|
|Tyre Rating||195/60 R15|
|Integrated CD/MP3 Player||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Blue &Me with USB Port||No||Yes||Yes|
|Steering mounted audio controls||No||Yes||Yes|
|Remote keyless entry||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Electrically adjustable ORVM||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Driver seat height adjustment||No||Yes||Yes|
|Rear arm rest||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Real-time mileage indicator||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Dual tone dashboard||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Leather wrap steering wheel and gear knob||No||Yes||Yes|
|Fire prevention system||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Immobiliser with Rolling codes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|ABS with EBD||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Ex Showroom price Mumbai||789157||874594||912831|
Competition All Specs
|Variant||1.4 Emotion||1.4VTVT SX(O)||1.5TiVCT Titanium +||1.5 VMT|
|Ex Showroom price Mumbai||912831||1008993||915185||968855|
|Engine Capacity (L)/Cylinder||1368/4||1396/4||1499/4||1497/4|
|A/C with climate control||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Integrated CD/MP3 Player||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Steering mounted audio controls||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Remote keyless entry||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Electrically adjustable ORVM||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Driver seat height adjustment||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Rear arm rest||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Real-time mileage indicator||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Leather wrap steering wheel and gear knob||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Immobiliser with Rolling codes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|ABS with EBD||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
The Linea T-Jet was introduced earlier in India but then the numbers were not sufficient for Fiat to sustain it. However, presently it is not only fuel efficiency which matters the most but also driving pleasure, the enthusiasts seek.
Linea comes in 3 engine trims, which include the Multijet diesel, F.I.R.E Petrol and the T-Jet petrol. The cost conscious consumers will always choose the first two but the T-Jet will always attract the sheer enthusiast. What makes it even more exciting is that this version does not come at a phenomenally non sense price.
It is for the ones who would seek performance but without digging deep in their pockets. It is also the cheapest when compared to the similar versions of Honda City, Hyundai Verna and Ford Fiesta.
This version also breaks the traditional image of Fiat in India of a company known to make only beautiful looking cars. People have always loved the way Fiat cars drive and even their owners vouch for it. It is one of the few manufacturers in the country to have active clubs. The T-Jet pushes the envelope further and projects the otherwise humble natured car as someone who can have flamboyance too.
Do we recommend this car?. If you are a petrol head, driving enthusiast and performance loving person, the Linea T-Jet should the obvious choice.