At one time, Doblo put its rivals in the corners in terms of transport possibilities. How does it fall out second-hand? Here are opinions about a used Fiat Doblo II.
Fiat introduced its kombivan quite late, because in 2000, when its key rivals – Citroen Berlingo, Peugeot Partner, Renault Kangoo – had been winning customers for several years. The Italian car, with similar external dimensions, offered a much larger luggage space, but it still fell into the shadow of its competitors. 10 years later the Doblo II debuted: much longer (almost 4.4 m), and at the same time more compact and visually more attractive than its predecessor. Although it is based on a Grande Punto platform, the wheelbase has been extended to 276 cm, allowing the packing of 7 people in the standard body variant. As befits the functionality-oriented segment, there were a lot of them: short and extended, with normal and high roof, passenger, delivery and cargo-passenger variants, and even with a loading platform (Doblo Work-Up). Fiat did what it could to bring its kombivan as close as possible to passenger cars. For this purpose, he installed the advanced Bi-Link rear suspension with a stabilizing bar (something like a multi-link), improving the car’s driving characteristics and, when loaded, eliminating the phenomenon of “sitting down” at the rear. As a result, the Doblo is really good to drive, of course for a utility car.
The Fiat Doblo is unmatched among the estate cars of the last decade when we consider the luggage space. With 5 people, it can fit 790 liters, while two people can load up to 3200 liters of packages (delivery versions: from 3.4 to 4.2 dm³). Let’s see how this model works in the opinions of users, who often use it as a car for work and family transport.
Fiat Doblo II – interior
The Doblo dashboard is styled in a similar style to the Grande Punto and Bravo II. As for a kombi van, it looks attractive and performs well in terms of readability. The buttons are arranged predictably, although those from the radio – are a bit too high. The budget character of the model is reminiscent of hard finishing materials, fortunately varnished (at least in passenger variants) in interesting colors. In Doblo, there are plenty of compartments and shelves, including a huge shelf under the ceiling, above the heads of the driver and passenger. The restyled cars received a visually attractive multimedia system with a touch screen, fortunately with some physical buttons. In Doblo, there is an impression of unlimited, even overwhelming spaciousness, known from kombi vans. So much so that you have to bend down to some elements to reach them.
Fiat Doblo, as well as other kombivans, are cars appreciated by very tall people because of the unobstructed space for passengers’ heads, regardless of the position in the cabin. In Doblo, each successive row is placed higher than the previous one, and there can be as many as three of them (even in the standard version of the body length). Importantly, the trunk has full-size seats that can be completely removed from the car (they do not have the convenient folding function, known from compact minivans). The front seats are sufficient for short and medium distances. The manufacturer does not specify the luggage compartment capacity for 7 people, and for 5 people it declares 790 l, with the possibility of increasing it to 3200 l. The space is scored by regularity and a large loading opening after opening the flap.
Fiat Doblo II – engines
The Doblo range was supplemented with engines well-known from other Fiats. There were only two gasoline engines – 1.4 naturally aspirated (95 HP) and turbocharged T-Jet (120 HP). Both use multi-point fuel injection, and the timing drive is provided by a belt, which, according to the manufacturer, should be replaced every 120,000. km. The vast majority of offers concern Doblo with diesel engines, which are Fiat’s proprietary designs. The weakest is the 1.3 MultiJet (80/90/95 HP), then 1.6 MultiJet (90/95/105/120 HP), and at the top of the range – the 135 HP 2.0 MultiJet. The base diesel did not have a dual-mass flywheel, and all of them had a diesel particulate filter as standard. Variants 1.4 and 1.3 MultiJet were combined with 5-speed gearboxes, the rest received 6-speed gearboxes. The “vending machine” was reserved as an option for the 105 HP 1.6 MultiJet only.
Used Fiat Doblo II – typical faults
In Doblo, you should expect investments resulting from the exhaustion of turbodiesels: dual-mass wheels, injectors (fortunately electromagnetic), or diesel particulate filters may require replacement or regeneration. They are especially impressive in the base 1.3 MultiJet diesel, especially when we only drive around the city. This engine is the only one with a timing chain that is 200,000 each. km tends to stretch. In the rest, you must not forget about replacing the timing belts. Another problem concerns the more powerful diesel units (1.6 / 2.0 MultiJet), where the oil drier gasket hardens, interfering with engine lubrication. Sometimes it is necessary to repair the airflow control system in the intake manifold (the so-called inlet flaps). In addition, users complain about inefficient heating, knocking in the suspension, malfunctions in the lock of the boot lid and lights that appear for no reason (e.g. oil pressure or injection system).
Fiat Doblo II – summary
Well-thought-out, spacious and refined, simply a successful kombivan. Behind the wheel of the Doblo, you can forget about its delivery pedigree for a moment, and in the top versions it even attracts attention on the street. Despite the moderate popularity and possible engine failures, it does not need to be deleted: its relationship with smaller Fiats bodes well for the selection of inexpensive replacements.