It was typical of Fiat’s design bravery to build a people’s car that harked back to the simplicity of the Citroen 2CV. It wanted to appeal to drivers who wanted ultra simplicity and a low price tag. The truth was the Fiat really needed to build lots of small cars very cheaply to try and stay in the black. Once again, Giugiaro was responsible for a car that was ground breaking in its approach. Back to basics design parameters meant the Panda had completely flat glass, including the wide screen. The body was also very simple in its construction, with flat body sides, a clam shell bonnet, simple nose slots for cooling and a single wiper. The lower half of the body was a clad in impact resistant plastic. It was basic, but effective. Inside, the clever design work was even more pronounced. The dashboard was substituted for a long tray that ran across the interior. The face level or vents, one at each bottom corner of the widescreen ran to the outside straight through the bodywork. All the instruments were grouped in a simple box around wheel. The rear seat was simply a hammock on a frame.
Very simple running gear meant cart spring suspension at the rear, although the Panda was eventually updated with a more modern chassis. Fiat even produced a simple 4×4 version of the Panda. Production of this exemplary utilitarian vehicle ended in 1994, although Seat built its own version, the Marbella until late 1997.