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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #1
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Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

My last Panda was a 2010 100HP and I posted about that here:

https://www.fiatforum.com/panda/4440...elf-100hp.html

I'd love another 100HP but finding another late one in the right condition/spec/miles etc is proving near impossible plus the fact they are getting pretty old now and we want one to keep for quite a few years it leads me to a newer say 2014ish Panda.

But....given the 100HP will never be seen again - no traction control, NA engine that loves 7000 revs etc how will I get on with the Twin Air!?

Or should I go for the regular 1.2 69hp and just thrash the nuts off it like all small Fiats of old?

I've read/watched many reviews - but specifically does the TA drive anything like the 100HP?

What puts me off a bit is talk of the power band being rather more diesel like (ie narrow and lower down) - for me the best thing of all in the 100HP was that third gear 4000 - 7000 B road power band, instant unstoppable response and endless fun.

Where does the TA redline/limiter actually come in and can you happily take it there?

Is the 1.2 any better in terms of 'normal' petrol feel and driving at the top end of the revs?

I will drive both but interested really to hear thoughts from those who have (had to) moved on from the 100HP?

Lastly I have read issues re' mapping on the post '14 Pandas - what is this all about please?

PS - not worried about TA economy - we do relatively few miles and as long as a car averages over 30 that's fine with me.
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Last edited by Dervdrain; 2 Weeks Ago at 12:05.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #2
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Re: Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

From experience, the 100hp was very perky from idle. I got mid 40's without much effort. At higher speeds it was characterful. The 1.2 I've now had 3 of has an increase in noise at 70. It is a lot quieter than a TA up to 50 but after that there's nothing in it. The TA flies from the off, feels like you're going way faster than actually are. Economy on the 4x4 was terrible really. 1.2 does 0-40 and gives up really. Drop gears and nothing happens. The TA 50-70 in 4th, 5th and 6th was great at motorway speeds. I'm definitely having another.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #3
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Re: Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

There are different versions on the 1.2 69hp.
Euro 5 (pre March 2014 ish) and Euro 6. (post March 2014)

We've had one of each of the 1.2's in both Euro specs (and I also have 4x4 TA) and the 1.2 Euro 6 isn't as nice to drive as the Euro 5.

It's seems strangled as the rpm's get higher and it can feel quite painful to get in anywhere near the redline, it also feels way flatter lower down the rpm than the Euro 5.
The Euro 5 feels freer, a little torquier and a lot smoother, both had around the same miles on them.

They also revised the Euro 6 in the way it pulls away.
It seems to control the idle way too much on lifting the clutch, controlling it's own fueling like a lot of modern cars do.

Trouble starts if you try and input too much pedal yourself as this opens the butterfly so too much air enters and it causes the engine to bog down. I think Fiat selected the cheap and uncheerful way to do this anti stall thing.


The Twinair is an oddball, some love it, some hate it, but it's worth trying.

They all tend to feel like first gear is way too short as it spins up the motor very quickly and before you know it, it slams into the rev limiter and your head into the steering wheel!

The trick is to just get it off the line in first with some rpm on and short shift quickly into second without it coming off boost.

Sure it's not as smooth as the 4 pots and they can sound like something's badly broken, but most owners find it infectious.

Get them in the sweet spot, on a bit of boost and they are quite lively, it will involve a lot of gear changing, though I don't think they are at their best like this.

They are more than happy to chug along in quite high gears at low speeds and low rpm, so slow in fact you can almost count the piston strokes!

Ok, it'll shake and shudder a bit doing this, but they shake and shudder anyway.
To drive it like this, you need to ignore urge to change down due to the sounds and engine feeling almost about to stall and just prod it with your right foot when needed, it'll pick up from almost nothing and tick tock away down the road making you grin.

There's no real difference in everyday mpg between the two engines, though there's more scope to hammer the TA engine a lot more.

We got around 36 mpg out of all of them and that's around central London (9 mph average speed)
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #4
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Re: Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

I had a 58-reg 100HP from new till mid 2013, when it was replaced by a 4x4 TA. Mrs b_u has had a MJ Mk3 and currently has one of the last Euro 5 1.2s,so I've experienced most of the recent Pandas, except a 2wd TA,

I loved the 100HP and agree with all the positive comments about it. It would go round roundabouts - and many bends - so quickly that you just had to drive with a grin on your face, although it wasn't actually that quick in a straight line. If I had space in the garage I'd be tempted to get another to keep.

I recently drove Mrs b_u's 1.2 for a fair distance for the first time in a while. It was a pleasant but steady experience, the instant response was a joy and - though I hadn't noticed any real roughness from the TA - I was reminded of how smooth a small 4-cylinder engine can be. Nevertheless, for sheer lack of grunt I wouldn't bother with a 1.2.

Even with the extra weight and losses of the 4x4, the TA is as quick in the middle gears as the 100HP, thanks to that flat torque curve. First gear is low but - because we bought it to cope with the road to our house in Italy, and mountain tracks more generally - I've found it extremely useful (in conjunction with the higher clearance as the 100HP grounded every time we went up and down the gravel road). Mpg is the same as the 100HP. The performance of the TA is less affected by the load in the car. I have nothing specific against the engine but I really would prefer a well-sorted NA four cylinder in my next car. The rev limiter is slightly less fierce if you feed in the throttle rather than banging it open but I haven't found it to be any more intrusive than it was on the 100HP - which shows how much the 100HP begged to be revved, I suppose.

Does the 2wd TA have discs all round? The brake son the 100HP and the 4x4 are very reassuring and the 1.2 is weaker in this respect.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #5
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Re: Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

Similar to the above - I let our 100hp go in July. It was the 2nd car to our 1.2 Dynamic.

I bought a Twinair. Hated it, though the surge in 3rd gear was fun for the 2 seconds it took to hit the rev limiter. Noisy as the 100HP but not in a good way. I sold it after 4 days and bought a 1.2.

The 319 1.2 Euro6 is better driven calmly - the 169 Euro5 prefers the thrashing. The Euro6 isn't slow, but it rides much better and quieter.

If you want fun/thrash - 169 Euro4/5. If you want refined (but still as quick) then 319 Euro6.

If you do go for the Euro6, the Murphymod is a must - it removes the stupid clutch switch which causes the funny setting off issue previously noted. Easy job.
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Last edited by AB100; 2 Weeks Ago at 14:07.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #6
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Re: Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

To be honest, if you're looking for a light, pokey, normally aspirated hatchback.
What about the last of the previous Suzuki Swift Sport.

The new one next year gets the 1.4 direct injection, turbo Boosterjet engine from the Vitara S with 138hp, but the last one had the flat 1.6 with 120hp.

We've this MA16 engine in our Vitara SZ5, it's got a surprisingly nice kick when the power comes on cam and a nice muted growl.

I reckon this NA Swift Sport will become proper classic too in a few years time.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #7
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Re: Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

Thanks guys - fantastic replies so far.

Like so many I suppose I just wish they made a 'new' 100HP but there we go!

I think I really need to get one for a whole day to try it not the usual salesmans 'test drive'.

Is the 500 (much more common locally) TA the same in effect or different with the 6 speed box?

And what is the actual redline - 6500?

From what I'm reading the way I like to drive (for B road fun) ie keeping it in the 5000 to 7000 band on the twisties (as I would in the 100HP) is just about the worst way to drive a TA??
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #8
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Re: Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

For the UK market, the Panda gets the 84hp Twinair engine with 5 speed gearbox.

The Panda 4x4 gets the same 84hp engine but with 6 speed, though the first is really low for off road crawling.

But writing that, I never really noticed much of a difference in the 5 speed 500 TA loaners I've had.
Like I wrote earlier, it appears that first is low, it's just it spins up the engine so quickly, it doesn't take much effort to hit the limiter, so it just feels short.

The 500 gets either 84hp with 5 or 105hp with 6 speeds.
(although it's 105hp, peak torque is identical to the 84hp).

A 84hp 500 is the same deal as the Panda 84hp, engine and gearbox wise.
Though the ride might alter a bit depending on the wheel size and tyre profile.

Yeah, 6500 and the limiter kicks in good and proper!
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Last edited by Goudrons; 2 Weeks Ago at 15:21.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #9
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Re: Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

The TA redline is 6000rpm tops. You can keep the revs up, and in 5 speed guise like the 1.2 it may do 50 in 2nd and 70 in 3rd. Just don't expect a kick. Turbo torque band maybe 1800rpm to 3000rpm. Also, if you wanted 50 in 3rd on the 4x4 by the time you've revved it, it may have done it in 4th from 30 in around the same time (very nice going between mini roundabouts). The first TA 4x4 I tried felt like Formula 1 by Panda standards and I had a Renaultsport Clio 182 at the time. Should have bought it really. 3 months old with 98 miles. Not much of a discount though.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #10
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Re: Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

Quote Originally Posted by Dervdrain View Post
Thanks guys - fantastic replies so far.

Like so many I suppose I just wish they made a 'new' 100HP but there we go!

I think I really need to get one for a whole day to try it not the usual salesmans 'test drive'.
Yes. A long, long drive. I made the mistake of buying without trying based on others' experience. I pretty much knew after setting off that the low revs/vibration would not be suitable for me but it was too late. I'd probably have got used to it but personally I'd rather have the quieter/smoother engine and 15 grams of torque.

Buy based on what you like and what you can live with- forget economy etc.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #11
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Re: Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

I have a 0.9 TA in a 4x4 Panda and some time ago drove a 1.2. To be brutally honest, if you're looking for a similar experience to your 100HP, I think both may leave you cold. The 1.2 (and we're going back some years, so all this may have changed with emissions equipment etc) was a nice little engine. Pretty gutless, but fun to wind up and keep there. Not a deal of torque, but a pretty tidy little performer, given it's capacity and output.
The TwinAir is not an engine you buy if you're after raucous high rpm thrills, if that's what you're after, this isn't the engine for you. As others have said - it's a unique and fun experience, but not a revvy, buzzy one. The rev-limiter is before the red-line in most gears, @~5,500rpm, but honestly, the fun is over before that. This engine is all about strong mid-range. As said, it'll pull well from low rpm, smooth out around 2,000rpm and pull like a frisky bulldog until ~ 4,500rpm. At that point you have to be somewhat mechanically unsympathetic to hold on to the gear, but also not in a hurry, as the quickest way to make progress is to grab another ratio and enjoy that induction roar and the sound of the two little pistons hammering up and down like a demented lawnmower! It's impressive and enjoyable, but not in a way familiar to most. Think 2CV with 3x the power (and, alas, twice the weight) and you're about there....
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Last edited by Panda 4x4 TA Antarctica; 2 Weeks Ago at 20:20.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #12
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Re: Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

Quote Originally Posted by Panda 4x4 TA Antarctica View Post
Think 2CV with 3x the power (and, alas, twice the weight) and you're about there....
Apart from the fact that you could rev the nuts off a 2CV and not break it. I swear it got smoother and smoother, as that characteristic banshee wail got higher and higher. On a long, downhill stretch (I’m thinking of the M4 westbound, approaching the Severn crossing) you could coax a 2CV to way over its stated maximum speed, to the astonishment of those that you roared (OK, whined) past. Happy days.

The TA, while impressive for a tiny 2-pot, is a nowhere near as much fun, and doesn’t sound nearly as good.
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Quote Originally Posted by gar074 View Post
I swear it got smoother and smoother, as that characteristic banshee wail got higher and higher
That would be the magnificent balance afforded by the boxer-twin layout, then! That said, heading UPhill would soon show the relative outputs of the two-units! The main difference being that ~60mpg was readily achievable from the 2CV motor*, whereas only careful use of the Fiat throttle will yield 50+mpg. Anyway, we digress.....

* at least, it was in my 2CV-engined 3-wheeler, until I set to doing barbaric things like drilling jets and lightening flywheels!
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Last edited by Panda 4x4 TA Antarctica; 2 Weeks Ago at 20:56.
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Re: Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

TA engines don't really come into their own until they have a few thousand miles on the clock. I didn't go for a 4x4 TA as the brand new demo model was awful to drive, always changing gears to maintain momentum, yet driving a 4x4 with 8k on the clock was so much better, more range in the gears and much smoother. In between I had a trekking TA from new, it's no 100HP (the rear doesn't bounce around like Tigger for a start ) but can make progress when needed. The mk4 panda is more refined than the mk3 but it lost something in the improvements.
After having a new Trekking and nearly new 4x4 TA I went back to the mk3 (a diesel 4x4 cross, the 1.2 being far too lethargic).
I'd keep looking for a replacement 100HP, sods law says you'll find one once you buy something else, there's plenty of time to go TA later...
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Re: Going from a 100HP to a Twin Air (or 1.2) - have you?

Thanks again guys, super helpful.

Sadly confirms most fears regarding drivability/fun but hey ho. I really would love another 100HP but the age thing is an issue for various reasons so will need to be a TA I guess but I'll try and blag one or a same spec 500 for a whole day and let you all know.

What's the Mk 4 Panda? I thought we were still on just the third?
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