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Fiat Brava in general

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    14 Reviews
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      03.03.2009 20:56

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      not as bad as you think

      I've bought Brava SX 16V 00 plate nearly a year ago from local dealer. Soon after purchase I've noticed a little bit cranky gearbox and click sound in clutch. Rear viper stopped working immediately and in few month rear de-mister was gone. There are some maintenance issues from previous owners as worn brake pads etc. In the summer the power steering switch started to leak but it was only 42 euro to fix. Since the purchase I made about 14000 km and apart the switch it wasn't off the road and even then it was just leaking but drove. Considering it is 9 years old car it's not that bad. There is not even trace after the rust and interior is still in fair condition, front seats are perfect, adjustable in two directions, adjustable steering wheel as well. It drives quite smoothly, the engine is small and lacks torque, though it pulls willingly in higher revs so it is even enjoyable to drive and around the city it is well enough. ideal for daily commuting. cheap to insure and low road tax is an advantage. All in all it is a good worker with italian charm. It's not the most reliable car but I can say it won't let you down on the hard shoulder at least mine hasn't so far. If you are not perfectionist you won't even notice the small niggles. the best is you can find some real bargain around basically paying only for tax and insurance. Depreciation is almost zero as it can't go any lower :)

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      20.02.2009 16:58
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      Ok for a run around car but not the most reliable of cars.

      Fiat is a car manufacturer based in Italy. Fiat is an acronym which stands for "Fabbrica Italiana Automobili Torino". A group of investors, including Giovanni Agnelli founded the Italian car manufacturers in 1899. The company have also previously manufactured tanks and aircrafts. Although an Italian based manufacturer, Fiat cars are produced worldwide. The company has factories in Brazil, Argentina and Poland, to name but a few countries. The Fiat Group (which includes Fiats, Alfa Romeos and Ferraris) are the largest car manufacture in Italy, with a range of cars starting from small Fiats to sports cars made by Ferrari. The Fiat Group has won the European Car of the Year award twelve times in the last forty years, more than any other manufacturer. The Fiat Brava won this aforementioned award in 1996. The Fiat Brava is a small family car, manufactured by the Fiat Group between 1995-2001. The Brava was discontinued in Europe in late 2001, and replaced by the Stilo, which was somewhat of a sales flop in most of the countries where it was sold. The Brava/Bravo models available at this time were effectively two versions of the same car, the Bravo a three-door hatchback and the Brava a longer five-door hatchback. In 2007, the Fiat Group revived the name with an all-new replacement for the Stilo; the new version uses only the Bravo name and is not available with three doors. The Brava is 4190 mm (165 in) in length, 1750 mm (68.9 in) in width, and 1420 mm (55.9 in) in height. The car is fairly attractive and would, I think (without wanting to generalise!), catch the eye of "boy racer" drivers, as the car can be "done up" and spoilers added on etc etc. The car is a nice sized car which is very practical for a small family. As a five-door hatchback, the Brava has a decent sized boot, allowing plenty of space for shopping, or suitcases on a long journey. The car gives the passengers plenty of leg room both in the front and the back of the vehicle. It is a fairly affordable car, which again is good for young families, particularly in the current credit crunch climate as money is tight. Despite the outward aesthetically pleasing appearance of the car, it is not all it's cracked up to be!! The acronym Fiat seems to have acquired over the years "Fix It Again Tomorrow" seems oh so appropriate!!! When the car works, it is great - it drives smoothly and is very comfortable. However, the car often experiences problems - some minor, some major. My boyfriend has this car at the minute and has only had it six months and has spent more fixing the car than he did when he bought it initially. Most things have been fixed, tweaked or replaced on it!! Not the most reliable of cars!!

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        21.10.2007 16:06
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        A no-no for all.

        When you buy a car off eBay you are probably asking for trouble and when you do not get it checked over by a mechanic you are definitely asking for it. However, occasionally you are desperate for a cheap vehicle and anything will do. After all, if you have a budget of four-hundred pounds you cannot expect much bang for your buck. It was therefore, with a large dose of pessimism and perhaps foresight for what the future would hold, that I bought a 1.4 R registration Fiat Brava for just three-hundred and seventy pounds with twelve months MOT. On arriving to pick up and pay for my vehicle I have to say that initial signs were favourable. The maroon bodywork was flawless and the interior tidy. Apart from a few inevitable scuffs the car was as good as new. The promised central locking was working fine although annoyingly you cannot operate it from the passenger side and the shape of the car is very smooth and long. Very much like the newer models of Ford Escort. The interior of the car is however, very basic in this model. This car is very much an eighties throwback on the inside with a variety of ashtrays and Fiat's own in-built stereo-cassette player. This means you would not be able to remove it and replace it with your own up to date stereo/cd or mp3 combo and as such this is not a car for music lovers. The radio is functional and the speakers adequate but you will not enjoy the crackles and thuds if you turn up the volume or bass. There is very little else in the way of extras in this car aside from a decent-sized lockable glovebox and as such those who like their gadgets will not like this car either. Actually driving the car is a bit bizarre. As a driver or passenger you have plenty of leg and headroom but bizarrely, Fiat have given the driver bucket seats which make you feel like you are driving a cross between a racing car and a go-kart as you feel like you are sitting on the floor. Unfortunately, this is not matched by a hugely underpowered engine that struggles to move your bulky vehicle above forty miles per hour and there is a definite lack of acceleration which makes overtaking and pulling away nigh on impossible. On the plus side the car cruises well after fifty miles per hour and is comparatively quiet on the motorway. A lack of power steering and the saloon style of this car makes it much more suitable for long motorway drives with the family than round town driving and parking is just painful. Fuel consumption for the 1.4 Fiat Brava is one of the few plus points to the driving experience as it is reasonable for a family car at around thirty-five miles per gallon. A round trip of twenty-five miles per day, five days a week was setting me back around thirty quid a week which considering the size and weight of the car, is not too bad. As I have mentioned this is a large family car and perhaps the last plus point I should mention is that it is roomy both front and back although you will struggle to get more than one booster seat in the back and sit three children comfortably. The boot room is very good for a saloon and is almost hatchback in size. As per usual this is almost doubled if you remove the parcel shelf and this family of six could fit ten plus shopping bags in with no problem. Unfortunately, this is the last good thing I can say about the Fiat Brava as after only three months of ownership, it has all gone downhill. First the brakes went (not good in the mersey tunnel!). Apparently, the mechanic across the road reliably informed me that Brava's brake pipes rust very easily. This is what happened to ours as the left-hand side pipe rusted and all the brake fluid vanished. A new pipe and fifty quid lighter and it was running again. Two weeks lighter and my brakes went again. Guess what? The right-hand side brake pipe had rusted and the fluid had gone. Another fifty quid lighter and it was running lighter. Finally, a month later and the head gasket on the engine cracked and the engine needed replacing which frankly costs more money than the car is worth. As such, yesterday it was towed to be dismantled. So, it would appear my pessimism was justified as my £370 eBay bargain has turned into an expensive lesson in how not to buy a car. I would not recommend a 1.4 Brava to anyone as they do not drive well and seem to suffer from all sorts of mechanical faults. Despite looking like a good, reliable family car the Fiat Brava has turned out to be the opposite. Now, where have I put my copy of the Autotrader?

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          14.11.2006 23:18
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          I love the car

          HELP!!!!! I have just bought a Brava ELX 1.600cc. only 33000 on the clock, and must say was bought from new by the one and only owner, and he hardly ever used it, it's absolutly fantastic, just like new...But it jerks when you take your foot off of the accelerator. and I SOMETIMES GET QUITE A STRONG SMELL OF PETROL.. CAN ANYONE HELP..by the way, forgot to mention that we are getting new clutch fitted as the old one is biting tight at the top

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            17.01.2003 19:22
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            having ran about in an old fiat uno for a while we decided to get a new car, we tried several different makes and models but when we got in to the brava we had well and truly made up our minds,the amount of space inside was perfect as out second child had just been born we needed as much space as possible the boot had more than enough room for the pram and all the other stuff that you need when you have 2 children.the only down side is that it is pretty heavy on fuel and oil.we have had the car 2 years now and it still runs like a dream i would tell anybody that is looking for a new car to try out the brava as i found it very good value .in the next few years we are hoping to replace it for an upgraded model i dont think i would ever go for another make as fiat in my opinion are the best if you are on a budget .so for £3500 i would say its money well spent

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              23.12.2002 18:03
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              This is my first owned car. I love it! I have it for about 5 months now, all-ready did 20.000 km with it. This car is fun to drive, looks very smooth and very sexy. The performance is good with an acceleration from 0 to 100 in about 10 - 11 secs (1.9 JTD). Top speed (tested by myself in Germany) lies @ +/- 200 km/h (didn't had much time to look @ the speedometer :-) ) @ 4000 rpm. The fuel consumption is doable if you drive it in a calm and civilised way. I do about 900 km with a full tank, mostly highway... The thing I like the most is the exterior: it has a very slick, sexy look and an aggressive nose. The car is well worth the money: it came with 4 airbags, power steering, central locking, heated electric mirrors, power windows, airco, abs, fog-lights. It drives very pleasant, very calm. The car isn't wild, it's more of a relaxing type of vehicule. Just sit back, relax, put some music on and enjoy the ride. Still, if you need the power the 105 horses are just below your right foot... It's kind of hard to park at first becouse of the very high rear. You can't see the car behind you becouse the Brava's back is very high. I got used to it thou... The driver's seat moves in four directions, and all though my seat is at the highest setting, I have plenty of head - room. I'm 1m84. The steering wheel moves up and down, allowing you to get really comfy in your seat. The interior is kinda squeaky and rattle somewhat, but hey - wanna a squeekfree car? Go BMW or Mercedes. I like the car very much... that's it. Thank you for letting me to share it with you

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                11.07.2002 01:10
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                I thought it was about time that I rewrote my Fiat Brava review as the first time I wrote it, I received an NU for it :-( I've had my Italian built Fiat Brava for about 15 months now and it has served me well to say the least. In that short period of time, it has ventured 29,000 miles, would you believe it? A huge amount of milage to be covering in that space of time, one might think. So, what have I been using it for? One might also think I have been travelling around the world in it to cover that many miles, but actually, it has just been bombing around the same area over and over and over again, from home in Kingston to University in London to Dad's house in High Wycombe and Mum's house in Princes Risborough. Over and over. I dread to think how much money I have spent on petrol... I will tell you about this car and it's life in categories. That will make it easier, I think... ECONOMY Mine being the 1.4 litre 75bhp version, this is not too thirsty when it comes to petrol. I find if I put in a fiver's worth of petrol, it will give me 50 miles on average, so that works out at 10p a mile which is not bad. £5 these days will only get you about 6.5 litres of petrol, so if my maths is correct, that will mean the car does about 40 miles to the gallon, which is not bad at all. One other thing about petrol consumption is that in order to get this generous amount of miles to the gallon, you have to drive moderately, by this I mean not revving the car too much or pressing the accellerator more than you have to and accelerating slowly- in other words, boring driving! PERFORMANCE and POWER Ah, my favourite topic! Unfortunately, this is not built as a performance car, although there are other variations of the Brava which have a little more oomph, like the sports version which is a 1.6 litre 16 valve. For anyone who wants to buy a fast car, the Brava 1.4 is not the car for you- but you can't have everything- if it's cheap to run it's going to be slow to drive. As I am a student, I cannot afford a fast car right now, so I have my Brava instead. The 1.4 is not bad in terms of speed, but is really no faster than a Transit van, sadly. It goes from 0-60 mph in about 15 seconds which I suppose, is average. The accelleration in 2nd gear is the best, with the most pull, but it won't get you past about 30mph. Third gear is a little disappointing in terms of pulling power, but like I keep stressing, this aint a performance car!! Go get yourself a Lambo or something (a little cheaper) if you want speed! In terms of power, the Brava doesn't have much of it. At a measly 75 bhp and 12 valves in this quite large car, it does feel like it is struggling sometimes, especially up steep hills, where I sometimes find myself slowing down to about 15-20 mph with a tail of cars up my backside and absolutely nothing I can do to shake them off. Once I even had to put the car back into 1st gear to make it up this steep hill! How embarassing! It's not normally that bad though- it was a bit poorly at the time! HANDLING This car handles quite well. Although it would not be advisable to take corners at 50 mph in this car, it has been done, and it did survive, albeit a little scary! This is something I would not do again in this car, but I was pleasantly surprised (more like extremely relieved) at how well it coped with this thrashing! The brakes in this car are strong- it has also had to do a few emergency stops in its time and it is a very quick reactor to breaks. Be prepared to be trown forward in your seat rather fiercely, but be relieved at it's capability. It is also good in the rain. Throughout the time I have had it in this abysmally wet country, it has never slipped or slid or skidded once. Maybe that's because I am a very skillful driver. Then again maybe it's down to the cars abi lity to cope well in bad situations. INTERIOR The dashboard of all Bravas are more or less the same; grey plastic with a standard Fiat radio with CD changing facilities, plastic dials etc etc. Plastic everything. But it doesn't look tacky or anything, it's just basic. The bad thing is that it doesn't have a rev-ometer; I like to know how many revs I am doing as it's a good indicator as to how much fuel you are eating up when driving. The standard Fiat radio and tape player is a pain in the backside to remove; as it doesn't look that appealing, I decided to replace it with a state of the art CD player, and the damn thing would not come out! I ended up having to take it down the Fiat garage where I found that you could only remove it with a specially made tool! The best hting about the interior is not the snazzy designed seats (?) but the amount of space it gives you in both the front and the back- I once squeezed five friends in the back and they still felt comfortable enough to bung more people in there! There is loads of leg room at both ends of the car. The boot is also massive- I have enough room in there to store almost all of my belongings- and that is a lot of stuff! DRIVING It's quite an easy car to drive in terms of the pedals which are not too sharp when you press them, but reactant enough to satisfy. Driving feels quite smooth as well. The only thing is that I have ahd people complain about lack of visibility around the car and that the big plastic skirtings and quite narrow rear window restrict viewing around the car, making the blindspots bigger. I've never had a problem with this though. EXTERIOR Quite a funky looking car, with not many others that look like it. I feel proud driving my brava as it looks good! The standard Fiat hubcaps it comes with are a bit naf, but replace them with some 15 inch alloys (you could even fit some 16 inches on if you wante d) and the car looks a treat; stylish, funky and cool without looking over the top! This is a car to buy if your after some subtle style- with just a few more adaptations to the standard model, you'll be lovin' it! For example, replace the black plastic lines/bumpers around the car with metallic paintwork the same colour as the car. Or you can glam it up a bit with side skirting. You could put a bodykit on it if you wanted to go the step further- I would reccommend it, as I have seen some kitted up ones which look damn good! Or else you could tint the windows if it's image you like. Anything goes on the brava if you do it properly! PARTS These are cheap to buy as Fiat is such a large company and this is quite a popular car. For example, a new engine will cost about £500. They are also widely available to buy both new and second hand- if you go down to your local Fiat garage they will have new parts and many will have a selection of second hand parts if you're after something a bit cheaper. SAFETY As I have already mentionned, this is a safe-feeling car to drive, and as it's handling is so good, this makes it less likely to cause accidents. The same goes for the breaking; as it is very reactant, it will cope better in an emergency situation. The car has only one airbag, on the driver's side, but that is only the older versions; the newer ones come with airbags on both sides. The seat belts are nice and sturdy as you would expect. Like many newer cars, it has a crumpling front; it was designed to crumple in an accident to take away some of the force of the impact, therefore making the driver/passenger less likely to get hurt. PRICE At new, one of these will cost you £10000. The 1.6's are a bit more pricey and range from £11000 to about £18000. There are a lot of them about second hand; mine cost £4000 when I bought it and it is a P reg (1997). I have seen the m go for as low as £3000 to this day. The oldest ones were made in 1995 and therefore are the cheapest ones. ANYTHING ELSE? All Bravas come with electric windows in the front, electric sun rooves and a CD changer compatible stereo. The better models have electrics in the back as well and heated seats in the front. They come in a very large variety of colours, so pick one to suit your taste. SOME SITES WHICH MAY BE USEFUL www.fiat.co.uk (official site with info and buying new) www.fiat-approved-cars.co.uk (search for used Fiats and dealers) www.autotrader.co.uk (the best site to buy privately sold second hand cars of any type) I hope that's everything, happy buying! jesi. :-D

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                  12.03.2002 18:46
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                  • Under-powered

                  Though it looks very stylish, I found the Fiat Brava an unpleasant and under-powered machine. What do I base my judgement on? I hired a Brava 1.2 SX for nine days in February. Agreed, nine days is not a long time. But, on the other hand, it is long enough to get a feel for the car. In addition, my comments are not affected by the fact that I've bought the motor. A car is usually the second most expensive item that people buy and, let's face it, if you've spent £10-12'000 pounds on something you are naturally going to be reluctant to admit that it's not up to much. I'm not casting aspersions on anyone else's review here, just highlighting a facet of human nature. Under-powered? Okay, okay, so I did hire the 1.2 which is bottom of the range. Maybe the bigger-engined models have more 'oomph' to them but, with two passengers in the back, my car responded to the accelerator with all the alacrity of a bowl of cold custard. Unpleasant? You bet. I'm not especially tall (6 foot exactly) and I don't have an exotic hairstyle (just short back and sides when I go to the barbers) but, as I drove, the hair on top of my head just touched the roof above. Very irritating. And, apart from the fore/aft slider, there was no other adjustment of the driver's seat. So, I had to put up with this constant tickling sensation from the roof above ... or sit hunched down, which didn't do my back any good. And my passengers in the back, when I was carrying them, said the rear headroom was even worse. The view out of the back was atrocious, the worst I have ever experienced in a small car, and the wing mirrors had no extra angled bit at the outside to fully cover the blind spot. Even with them fully adjusted there remained a small area behind to my right that was not covered. Because of this poor view, changing lane involved a quick swivel of the head each time and parking was difficult. To add insult to injury, when in operation, the rear wiper made a horrible graunching sound ... and this in a car with only 3'000 miles on the clock. The problem with the rear wiper illustrates the quality of the finish, which I found poor. There were lots of rattles and squeaks and the rear hatch wouldn't close properly without a really good hard bang. The heating and ventilation weren't up to much, either. I didn't seem to be able to reach a happy medium. I was either boiling or shivering. Finally, in terms of 'fixtures and fittings' I found this car sadly lacking in comparison to other, similar models I have driven. There were very few of the 'niceties' (such as additional adjustments on the driver's seat, or variable speed on the intermittent setting for the wipers ) which now seem to be standard on many other makes. Have I got anything positive to say about the Brava? Not a lot. It looks very stylish and fuel consumption wasn't too bad. It was also responsive to the steering wheel. I drove it a lot through small and winding back lanes in South Wales, where I was visiting. It handled those well. But, apart from that I can't find a lot to commend this machine. If I was in the market for a small hatchback I would definitely not buy a Fiat Brava. Last year I hired a VW Golf for a similar period and that was streets ahead of the Brava in terms of comfort and performance.

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                    16.05.2001 20:46

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                    excelent stylish motor - Advantages: spacious - Disadvantages: poor rear view

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                    20.12.2000 17:49
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                    We (my wife, 14 month old son and I) have owned our P-reg Brava 1.6 ELX for around 5 months now. Like some of the other owners that have commented, we bought it because our little “hot-hatch” was proving just too small – so we traded in our P-reg Cinquecento Sporting for the Brava. We needed a car that was capable of hauling about all the usual paraphernalia associated with transporting a young baby and, as most of our family live upwards of 200 miles from us, it had to be comfortable and reasonably well equipped too. We set ourselves a budget, based on what we thought we’d get for the Cinquecento, and set about looking for a descent car. Since we’ve been together, my wife and I have always stayed true to the Fiat marque – thanks mainly to her dad’s infectious enthusiasm for the make, but also, for me at least, the shear fun of driving them. So, we were thoroughly delighted to find that we could afford a descent, relatively ‘young’ Brava and still stay within our allotted budget. We opted for the ELX mainly because of the trim level – the idea of alarm, remote central locking, electric sunroof and airbags were most appealing after the stripped out ‘sporty’ interior of the Cinquecento. But the alloys and front light washers (which I think improve the look of the front of the car) also swayed us. We were initially torn between the 1.6 and 1.8 models (because we both enjoy driving and wanted, but a squint at the specs revealed that there was only about 12 Bhp difference, but the 1.6 is two insurance groups lower. What were the alternatives? Well, for a car of comparable size we were looking at Escorts, Lagunas, high mileage Vectras and so on. Yup – all bland, anonymous rep-mobiles. What we’ve ended up with is a car that, in my opinion is grossly under-priced when compared to the opposition (although I’m not complaining!), and is a little more individual that the jelly-mould alternatives. The down side? Well, fuel consumption was a shock after the frugal Cinquecento, but the car is very tractable and can make good progress by just short shifting through the gears and taking advantage of the torquey 16-valve engine. So a compromise can be reached. Also, bearing in mind that I now rarely drive a car (I commute on a motorcycle instead – beats the traffic!), the A-pillars (the pillars either side of the windscreen that go up to the roof) do seem to limit visibility on roundabouts and sharp corners. Generally though, I can’t really say anything bad about it – the fabled Fiat rust and build quality foibles have not materialised, it’s very comfortable, has a good stereo, feels safe and spacious and goes/stops/handles impressively well.

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                      17.08.2000 20:35
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                      How did you feel when you bought your first car? Scared that you might not have made the right choice? Can i afford this? Well I have just had a full weekend of asking myself all of these questions! and finally cam to the decision to buy myself a Fiat Brava, I pondered over many of them the Bravo, Punto and also the Brava I almost went for the Bravo and at the last minute changed my mind to the Brava. It has all the features you would expect for a good car and more, Multi CD player, electric windows, mirrors etc.. Inside the car is very spacious, with plenty room at the front and loads of room in the back seat area and the boot is also massive, a perfect family car with 5 doors. Now the power I was a little wary about as it is only a 1.243 to be precise but it is also 16v and gives it that little bit of oomph and when you drive the beast you do feel it, the power is equivelant to a 1.4 but the economy of a 1.2 now that is a great feature in itself, well I think so any way. So all in all I feel that i have done rather well for my first car purchase which if I can add was more exciting than my first house purchase.

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                        17.08.2000 03:28
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                        When I was pregnant last year, we decided to buy a bigger car, as we only had a small 2 door at the time. We finally chose a Fiat Brava SX, and I thought it was perfect. It was a really big family sized car, massive boot space for the massive pram I was buying LOL. Loads of room inside, and it had lots of extras. It had electric windows, power steering, airbag, central locking, and even an electric sunroof. You don't see many cars with an electric sunroof. I was a bit frightened of driving it at first as it was so much bigger than our other car, but I found it much easier, and it was lovely to drive, very smooth. I suppose the power steering helped. The only drawback was that it used quite a lot of fuel. Apart from that it was a wonderful family car. Unfortunately, my husband was involved in a bad car accident at Christmas and it was a write off. We now have an Escort, which is nice, but not half as nice as the Brava. I would definitely recommend it for a family.

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                          08.06.2000 07:06

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                          HAD MINE FOR A WHILE NOW VERY HAPPY INDEED 10/10 DID NOT KNOW AT FIRST IF IT WAS GOING TO BE MY CUP OF TEA ALWAYS HAVING SPORTS CARS IN THE PAST BUT HAVE TO SAY THE COMFORT AND THE HANDLING AND THE AMOUNT OF MILES I GET FROM THIS MAKE ME WISH I HAD NOT WASTED SO MUCH MONEY ON THE OTHERS BEFORE ALSO FOUND THE DEALERS VERY HELPFUL AND NOTHING WAS TOO MUCH TROUBLEONCE AGAIN 10/10

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                          07.06.2000 06:55
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                          I have had my Brava for 6 months now and it is probably the best value for money vehicle I have owned. The ride is smooth and quiet,with enough room for three screaming brats in the back. The Instruments are easy to read, although the sterio is a bit fiddly to work while on the move. Petrol consumption is about average for a car this size and a full tank will get you from Glasgow to the midlands no bother. Fiat seem to have reliability built-in to this model, I have yet to hear of anyone I know who has a Bravo, to complain about breakdowns etc. Overall it is a nice wee package for a family saloon, but it could do with a wee bit more leg room in the back.

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