Ypsilon introduces host of new technologies to the supermini market
THE Chrylser Ypsilon introduces a host of new technologies as well as bringing the brand name to the supermini segment.
For the first time in this class of car, buyers have access to a raft of large car features including xenon headlights, the brand's Magic Parking system plus Blue&Me-TomTom LIVE.
On top of that, depending on the trim level they choose, buyers are able to specify automatic climate control, fog lights, 16-inch wheels, cruise control, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, dusk and rain sensors, parking sensors and a 500-watt surround sound music system.
There are S, SE and Limited versions with prices starting at £8,866. A huge choice of options enables owners to personalise their cars.
Although the baby Chrysler's underpinnings are closely related to those of the popular Fiat 500 and Ford Ka, the Ypsilon has a more roomy cabin thanks to its longer wheelbase, shared with the all-new Fiat Panda.
Naturally, the Ypsilon pulls together a power-train and technology package cherry-picked from the Fiat Group's most modern offerings. All engines come with a start and stop system as standard, which helps economy figures.
The UK engine line up comprises: the 875cc TwinAir two-cylinder powerplant, now well established in the Fiat 500, the 1.3-litre MultiJet II turbo-diesel with 95bhp and, in the entry-level position, Fiat's stalwart 1.2-litre Fire petrol engine, which offers exceptional economy of 57.6mpg on the combined cycle.
The 1.3-litre M-Jet manages an astonishing 74.3mpg (combined) which equates to just 99 g/km of CO2. All Ypsilon engines are also Euro 5 emissions compliant.
In the TwinAir model there's a semi-auto five-speed transmission.
This model also features an ECO button on the fascia which limits torque to 100Nm at 2000rpm for even better economy.
The Ypsilon's seating position is fairly high and with an elaborate control stack and instrument binnacle you might well believe you were driving a bigger car.
The little car rides pretty well with suspension that doesn't make a fuss over pock-marked urban roads. It's reasonably refined on the motorway, too, so there's no reason why it should be confined to the city. Furthermore, even the entry level 1.2-litre petrol offers reasonably strong performance.
If you want to stand out from the supermini crowd, the Ypsilon's distinctive design will certainly provide the means. There's a quirky Italianate flavour to its acutely curvy, almost coupe-like shape.
Chrysler's partner Lancia has had plenty of success selling its smallest cars to style conscious Italian women and is hoping to entice a similarly enthusiastic customer base over here.
The brand is being re- launched in the UK with a powerful new series of advertisements drawing upon the gritty, urban reputation of the American operation.
The campaign features the entire UK model range that includes the highly successful Grand Voyager people carrier, the stunning new 300C executive saloon and the versatile Delta hatchback as well as the Ypsilon,
"These are exciting times for Chrysler," says Nigel Land, brand director, Jeep Chrysler UK. "The brand's great success in the States is widely recognized and this will help us to establish Chrysler as a main competitor in the UK car market."