Fiat Doblo review - Engines, performance and drive
Don’t expect blistering pace but the Doblo’s diesels are up to the job and the drive is better than you’d think
The Doblo has a more advanced suspension set-up than we’re used to in van-based MPVs and small cars generally. On the road this translates into a pleasantly supple ride that’s on a par with a reasonably comfy supermini. The high shape means there’s inevitably quite a bit of body-roll in corners, while the steering is very light and offers little feedback.
The engines are quite refined but the lack of sound proofing means that wind and road noise do swirl around the Doblo’s cavernous interior, especially at higher speeds.
The manual gearbox is light in its action to match the steering and good to use but the leather-clad gearknob in our Lounge trim test car had raised stitching that felt uncomfortable in the hand.
The Doblo has an upright van-style driving position that’s great for getting in and out easily but isn’t particularly comfortable on long journeys, especially in conjunction with the unsupportive seats. In town, the huge windows give a decent view out but there are thick pillars that can obstruct that view at junctions or when reversing.
The fastest Fiat Doblo takes 12.1 seconds to get from a standstill to 62mph so even these range topping 118bhp Multijet 120 models don’t feel particularly rapid. However, you do get a good slug of mid-range torque in the diesel options so they don’t struggle, even with a fully-loaded car.
The petrol model is going to be more of an issue if you plan on using the Doblo’s prodigious capacity. 94bhp and substantially less mid-range muscle mean it’s as sluggish as the 15.4s 0-62mph time suggests.
In this review
- 1Fiat Doblo reviewThe Fiat Doblo is a van-based MPV with lots of space that’s better to drive than you might expect
- 2Engines, performance and drive - currently readingDon’t expect blistering pace but the Doblo’s diesels are up to the job and the drive is better than you’d think
- 3MPG, CO2 and Running CostsFuel economy is nothing to write home about but the Doblo should be tough and otherwise cheap to run
- 4Interior, design and technologyThe Doblo feels built to last but it looks like a van and some of the passenger car creature comforts are missing
- 5Practicality, comfort and boot spaceThere’s a lot of room in the Doblo, but it’s a shame so much of it is located above your head where it’s not as useful.
- 6Reliability and SafetyThe basic safety kit is standard and the Doblo should be reliable, if only because there’s little to go wrong.