At first it was a Bravo but then, like Aussie, it was going to be a Ritmo. Now Fiat New Zealand have announced when Fiat’s mid-size hatch arrives in September will be badged Bravo!
“With Fiat being out of the Australian market for so long, the name of the new car was fairly academic for them,” says Lawrie Malatios, General Manager for Fiat in New Zealand. “But here we were very keen to use the Bravo name as the previous model to wear this name was one of the most successful Fiat models in New Zealand and we wanted to build on the warmth already felt for the Bravo name with the new model. We were, therefore, very pleased when we were given the clearance to use the Bravo name here!”
I wonder if it’s more to do with New Zealand’s experience of the late 70’s Ritmo and it’s less than spectacular build quality. Aussie didn’t get the Ritmo so it’s not an issue there.
You have to be careful bringing back old brands. Holden recently revived “Viva” to try and give credibility to their cheap mid-range Astra replacement. The Vauxhall Viva was a common sight on Kiwi roads in the 70’s yet all I could think of was a mate’s “first car”, a clapped out Viva. It was so knackered when the time finally came to dispose of it he took it to several wreckers, arriving back at work depressed that none wanted it! Name association can be cruel.
From what I’ve read, the new Bravo has had mixed reviews. Most love the style, like the engines but packaging and handling are class average rather than leading. It will be interesting to see how it’s received in New Zealand, whatever it’s called.
Bravo! New Fiat set to arrive in September! | Fiat Bravo News
Fiat’s newest model will arrive in New Zealand in September and, unlike Australia, it will be wearing its European name, the Fiat Bravo.