The recently marketed Punto is the model Fiat is staking everything on for its relaunch and it was one of the most acclaimed novelties at the last Frankfurt Motor Show. Silvia Baruffaldi met Flavio Manzoni, Fiat/Lancia/LCV design coordinator for production cars, and Giorgetto Giugiaro, who was assigned the execution of the exterior design after a competition among various suppliers, to fill out the story of the project with them.

“An important generational changeover, just like that between the Uno and the first Punto in its time”. That’s how Giugiaro describes this latest development in the story of Fiat segment B cars to which he has personally contributed by designing the two cars mentioned as well as the latest offering, greeted as a return to Italian styling.

“We knew that the new Punto would play a key role in the range”, says Flavio Manzoni, today coordinator of Fiat/Lancia/LCV design for production cars. “One of the requisites of the project was to define a stronger front image because Fiat family feeling has not been sufficiently pronounced in the most recent models. For the body of the car we wanted a single-box layout but with decisively dynamic features. A combination of sportiness and elegance, matched with great interior space so as not to lose the functional value of the car the new model was to replace”.

The new Punto was called “Grande” at its launch for a combination of reasons: the intention to get back to selling large volumes again in this particularly strategic segment for the company in Europe, and the fact that the car is significantly larger than the previous generation. The warm welcome given to the car by the public is a first, positive response to these intentions.

The article continues in Auto & Design no. 155

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