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Published on Feb 18, 2016
We wish the Fiat Toro compact pickup would come to America
Ready for another round of wailing and gnashing of teeth? Then let the Brazilian-market Fiat Toro pickup commence the lamentations about our domestic lack of compact pickup trucks. Previewed by the FCC4 concept showed at last year's Sao Paolo Motor Show, and then this mule, the little double-cab is rumored to be based on the Small Wide 4x4 corporate architecture that supports the Jeep Renegade. At 193.5 inches long, the Toro is 26 inches longer than the Renegade, 20 inches shorter than the Chevrolet Colorado extended cab, and ten inches shorter than the 2011 Ford Ranger.
The Toro is offered in three trims - Urban, Adrenaline, and Country - and two drive options. The Urban comes in a front-wheel drive configuration, and gets a 1.8-liter E-Torq Flex four-cylinder with 138 horsepower mated to a six-speed automatic. Adrenaline is also 4x2 only, but buyers will get a 2.0-liter Multijet turbodiesel with 170 hp tied to that six-speed auto or a six-speed manual. The top Country trim is the only one with 4x4 and it gets all the powertrain options: the 1.8-liter with the six-speed auto, or the 2.0-liter diesel with either a six-speed manual, six-speed auto, or nine-speed automatic. The manual can be specced with 4x2 or 4x4, the nine-speed only comes in 4x4. The turbodiesel has up to 280 pound-feet of torque in other Fiat applications.
Fiat Brazil says it can carry five in "the comfort of a luxury car." That might be a bit much, but it is tow-rated for 2,200 pounds and can be optioned with appealingly useful and decorative features like xenon headlights, LED DRLs, fog lights, bright underbody protection, Uconnect with a five-inch touchscreen, light and rain sensors, and a sunroof.
The smaller Fiat Strada, a compact Brazilian-market pickup we drove in 2013 that 74 percent of you said Fiat should bring here, managed an easy 50 miles per gallon with a 1.3-liter turbodiesel with 94 hp and 148 lb-ft. The Toro wouldn't be that sippy with fuel, but we have a feeling it'd be more than pleasing to those still hankering for a genuinely small truck with some comfort features and a decent tow rating. We also have to wonder if such a machine, perhaps with the powertrain options of the Jeep Renegade, might help with Fiat's lagging US sales figures.