The two-millionth second-generation Fiat Panda has just rolled off the production line at the Fiat Auto Poland plant in Tychy.
Launched in 2003 and marketed in 76 countries worldwide, the Panda continues to be one of Fiat's most successful models: Across Europe, the Panda still outsells all of its A-segment rivals with a 16.6 per cent market share for the first six months of 2011.
On a recent drive around the southwest of France on a keen budget, the Fiat Panda proved a revelation. The seemingly small boot area took all three travel bags and it was an added bonus that small parking spaces were accessible. Yes, there were lots of gear changes on the climbing and twisty routes, but that would be the case in many bigger cars too, and I did not have to stop at as many petrol stations where fuel was a little more expensive than at home.
The Fiat Auto Poland factory in Tychy, Poland, started producing cars in 1992 and has to date built an astonishing 6.2 million vehicles. It is one of the most modern plants in the worldwide automotive industry with a "World Class Manufacturing" silver level certificate. It is no co-incidence, then, that the Fiat Panda rates as the most reliable city car, according to the German Automobile Club.
The two-millionth Panda produced in the Fiat Auto Poland plant is a Fiat Cross Panda 1.3 multijet finished in pasodoble red.