Added: 22nd of February 2019
My dad bought this car when it was 6 months old and last year I took it on after needing a car quickly when I gave up my company car. To be honest, it wasn't a car I would ever go out and buy, it looks boring and uninspiring but after driving it for the past 8 months, I love it! Very good on diesel and cheap to run. Massive boot space for my dogs. Comfortable and easy to drive. Only just needed to replace the exhaust this year and it still has the original clutch fitted. It's matt red in colour which is looking a bit dull now but nothing T-Cut and polish won't fix. It's fast becoming one of my favourite cars I've owned. My mechanic pokes fun of the car every year when he services it but, like I keep saying, it's still running really well which is great for it's age (15 years old). I was only going to keep it on a temporary basis but I think I'll keep it now. Overall, very impressed with the car.
Added: 17th of April 2018
I bought my Stilo because I needed a cheap car, quickly. It is dull, boring and utterly characterless to look at. The seats have a heavy metal bar at the back which does its best to destroy your coccyx every time you go over a bump unless you have the seat backs ridiculously upright. It's a classic example of an French/Italian car - ideal for small framed folk who want to lean manically over the steering wheel, a torture device for talk people who want to recline. The quality of the internal trim would not be out of place in the 1980s. What idiot designed a car where the approved method of changing headlamp bulbs involves removing the front bumper wholesale? It has at least three warnings that come on intermittently with no sign whatever of the cause of the fault being genuine - water in fuel, heater plug fault and an unspecified 'sensor failure' or similar - apparently this is normal. The remote keys are prone to forgetting the cars code and cost $$$ to get reprogrammed. Is it a surprise that an aluminium exhaust bracket bolted to a steel body shell corrodes? I suppose that helps reduce corrosion of the body shell. The sound system works, I suppose that's a point in its favour. The good points: The 1.9 JTD diesel is fuel efficient, it's almost impossible to get less than 48mpg whatever you do. The car is surprisingly perky - the engine is used in some tiny Alfa Romeos. Strangely it's very much a drivers car - it bounces, rattles and sways around in a way that greatly upsets passengers but makes the driver feel they are 'pushing the envelope' at far from dangerous speeds. The 'city' PAS is great for low speed manoeuvring, although the turning circle doesn't seem as tight as it could be. To be honest, it makes me pine for an old Panda 4x4 which had the same no-frills rattle round fun drive appeal. But it's an awful drive if you want to goo 100 miles in it. I've done 300 miles in a day in it a few times, and it leaves you feeling twenty years older and barely able to straighten your back. Come back Mondeo, all is forgiven... P.S. did I mention that the Stilo is probably the most utterly characterless car on the planet? Even the Multiplas has character - the Stilo is blander than a white bread and cumber sandwich without the crusts - or the cucumber.
Added: 22nd of April 2017
My fiat is brilliant. I've had it six and a half years. I got it with 30,000 on the clock, wait for it...it now has 202,000 and still going. I'm really going to be sorry to trade it in, but I think the gear box is going. Bushes are going, some exhaust corrosion and suspension problems. It now squeaks internally, and I don't know what it is! A mouse maybe. It goes like a rocket and i'm quite attached to it. A lot of mechanics (apart from AA who are kind about it) don't like them. The electrics trick first time owners. I spent money on trying to get pre heat fault done, but now I ignore it, and have done for years. They are tatty on the outside, but the engine is ace.
Added: 11th of October 2016
Have owned car from 2nd hand for seven years. It has been serviced regularly. Early continuous electrical problems affecting dashboard were dealt with. The only causes for concern since have been: 1. infrequent, affecting warning lights (cure themselves). 2. replacement of rear suspension parts (FIAT dealers insist on supplying complete assemblies, independents replace the worn parts only). This is a comfortable car with a good seating position, adequate space, unexpectedly very good mid-range acceleration and fuel consumption and good reliability.
Added: 6th of March 2016
I realise this is an older car, bodywork is great, but after 1 day we are having problems with the boot automatically showing open, and a bulb warning showing
Added: 30th of August 2014
My last fiat I owned was a Uno Turbo back in the late 80's and was the best fun car I have owned. Unfortunately Fiat went off the boil and after that I never returned until now, I have bought a 26k Stilo with FSH and I'm blown away. Did not even give them a second look until a friend said they are one of the most underrated cars you can buy. Great car, comfortable, roomy, goes well too with the 1.6 twin came engine. Have a look around there are some cracking deals to be had out there, the only reservation I had was mine had to be a 3 door as the five door has different panels and did not appeal to me personally. My choice 1.6 16v 3 door 2003 with 26k on the clock and full history, I paid £800 which is banger money, there about so get looking...
Added: 16th of November 2013
We have had our Stilo for ten years, from Uni runs to transporting furniture and grandchildren. It has never let us down. Bought for £5k at auction. What a bargain! We are looking to replace but Fiat are letting us down at the moment - we've run Fiats for over forty years.
Added: 16th of November 2013
Having owned a number of Italian cars, the Fiat Stilo ranks as one of the best. It has all the performance I want and, in my time, I have been a turbo driver, its running costs are moderate, comfort is perfect - on four hour trips to North Wales there is no discomfort for the driver or passengers. It has a slight question mark on reliability but this is due to the modern computer control of car engines, producing warnings that are false and failure occasionally of sensors (but this is a disadvantage of all modern vehicles). The hatch back has ample carrying capacity with or without folding seats and, as the majority of my outings are with just two people, three doors are fine. The shape is sporty and eye catching rather than that of the saloon version. My vehicle may be "old" in some eyes but it does all I want so what is the point of changing!
Added: 15th of November 2013
This has been a really excellent car. I've now done 135,000 miles and, touch wood, it's still going strong. If Fiat were to produce a similar class of car again, I would strongly consider buying it.
Added: 14th of October 2013
A very underrated car. I have owned one for nearly 4 years and it has been very good indeed. Extremely economical with the 6 speed box, and servicing is very cheap at an independent garage. Power steering motor failed but 50% was paid by my AA extended warranty. Very few other faults in 40,000 miles in my ownership.
Added: 13th of October 2013
Fiats are traditionally thought of as unreliable, but this is my third (a Punto and two Stilos) and none of them have let me down. (I've also had an Alfa, that was fine too.) Economy is good, I can get 57mpg on a run, It is serviced by my local garage, which means that the service counter can't be reset, but it's much cheaper that going to a Fiat service centre. The nearest is over thirty miles away. The car is comfortable, good head and legroom in the rear. The load space is poor,the rear seats do not fold down very well. It's powerful but not sporty. The engine smokes when accelerating. The windscreen pillars create a serious blindspot. The car is well appointed technically. Overall I think it's the best family car Fiat have made for years, but they replaced it with the Bravo, which is not good. I will not be buying another Fiat. Their dealerships are few and far between as are service centres, and when you get there, they're not very good value.
Added: 12th of October 2013
Excellent economy for the size of car. Excellent performance and very reliable and comfortable to drive even when fully loaded. Low road tax and insurance.
Added: 12th of October 2013
The Fiat Stilo is a very under rated car. It is spacious, comfortable on long journeys, easy to drive, has power and manoeuvarability. Although it is eleven years old, there is no reason to change it for a more up to date model.
Added: 11th of October 2013
The Fiat Stilo is overall quite a nice and practical car to drive, with quite a lively 1.4 litre engine and a roomy feeling interior. It has been mostly reliable although the battery was rubbish so I replaced it with a good one and not had any trouble with starting etc. for the last four years. The biggest problem with this car is the design of the headlamp access points which are virtually impossible to open and get your hand in to replace bulbs, I've always had to take it to a garage so that they can get to it from underneath, which is a real pain as I have had at least 6 headlamp bulbs 'go' in the last four years. The rears are accessible but with a bit of work involved and not what I would call a quick job, also water had leaked into them and rusted one of the light panels which had to be replaced. The other main drawback in my opinion, though only cosmetic,is the grey interior cloth which stains really easily and requires endless scrubbing, especially if you are opening doors in the rain, so I would recommend a darker cloth interior if you are looking at any as it really does look awful.
Added: 11th of October 2013
The most comfortable car to drive (I'm 6ft 2ins tall)I've had for many years. On motorways the 6th gear ensures good fuel economy. With 182,000 miles on the clock, it is still a reliable performer with no major engine component or clutch failurs.