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Fiat Freemont Crossroad road test

by Stephen Walker

23rd February, 2015

Home > Road Tests > Fiat

Fiat's big car is a version of the Dodge Journey, itself a capable MPV that has been around for a few years now. Both models are made in Mexico, with the major difference between the two being that Fiat four-cylinder engines are the power choices in the Freemont.

However, the newly available Freemont Crossroad changes that equation because power comes the admired 3.6-litre Chrysler V6 petrol engine. The Crossroad is not available with either four-cylinder engine. Hence, the Freemont Crossroad is somewhat special in as much as its engine and styling effects make it stand out from other Freemonts.

We have previously enjoyed the Fiat Freemont diesel on an extended road test when we put four onboard and travelled 440 kilometres north from Melbourne (Victoria) to Henty (NSW) in 2013.

But this time we really do an extended road test and head up the Hume Highway from Melbourne to Tahmoor and Picton (NSW) approximately 800 kilometres each way in the new Crossroad!

Test car particulars

Our red test car was the Fiat Freemont Crossroad.

Variants and prices*

The spacious Freemont comes along in four versions. Powered by Fiat 2.4-litre petrol engine are a base model, a mid-spec Urban and the upper spec Lounge. A 2.0 diesel is available in the Urban model. Then there is the Chrysler V6 powered Freemont Crossroad with the appearance of an SUV-type of vehicle to distinguish it from the other variants.

Freemont Crossroad arrived on the local market priced from $36,500* - which represents amazing value for such a large car.

On the road in the Fiat Freemont Crossroad

One thing that is immediately noticeable with the Freemont is the interior space. There is plenty of room for five in two rows of seats and with some compromise seven can squeeze in the standard three rows of seating.

Luggage space is massive as a five-seater and suitable for some overnight bags or school bags when configured for seven passengers. We travelled with two on board up the Hume Highway but had five occupants seated comfortably onboard around the Tahmoor area.

The ride was good, as you would expect of a longer wheelbase type of vehicle. There is a little body roll at speed, just as you should anticipate from a large, heavy vehicle.

The team was pleased with the performance, so much so that it hardly needs to be stated given that the Crossroad comes with that mighty fine 3.6-litre Pentastar motor.

Whilst the Freemont doesn't win prizes for sports car handling I find that the Fiat Freemont accounts for itself particularly well in this category of vehicle. On each of our northbound and southbound 'run' we covered the full distance between Melbourne and Tahmoor in one drive stopping only for the traditional calls of nature, meals, photographs, sightseeing and a fuel stop. The comfort provided within the Freemont Crossroad was never in doubt.

Both Fiat and Chrysler are to commended for the worthy collaboration with the Freemont Crossroad.

Connectivity and audio

Crossroad comes with an 8.4-inch Uconnect touch screen satellite navigation system, DVD player and SD slot, Bluetooth connection, rear parking camera and an Alpine sound system with six speakers, 368-W amplifier, subwoofer, USB, AUX-IN inputs, 12 V socket in the front armrest compartment and steering wheel controls for some audio control functions.

Standard equipment on the Freemont Crossroad

Enhancements to the exterior have provided the Crossroad with an SUV-like appearance - a good thing, in my opinion.

Numerous upgrades are evident on the interior too. This ensures that the Crossroad earns its place as a unique variant in the Freemont line-up.

Specifications

The front-wheel drive Crossroad features Chrysler's 3.6-litre V6 which develops 206kW of power and a handy 342Nm of torque. Transmission is a six-speed automatic. This combination is ideal as it always had a ready supply of power and it made light work of our long distances.

Disc brakes are fitted, front and rear.

The wheels are 19" Hyper Black alloys with a 'compact' spare wheel.

Fuel

The factory indicate the fuel consumption rating for the 3.6-litre petrol-engined Freemont Crossroad is 10.4 litres per 100 kilometres on the combined cycle.

Our average consumption figure was 9.5 litres per 100 kms according to the onboard trip computer. Our driving mix was about 1,650 kms on the highway and about 300 kilometres in urban traffic.

Extra-urban fuel consumption is rated at 7.8 litres per 100kms so we didn't come close to the academic figure. However, for a large vehicle I must say that I was quietly impressed with the fuel consumption of the Crossroad.

On the urban cycle, the fuel consumption rating is 14.8l/100km.

Safety

Six airbags, Electronic Stability Control + Hill Holder + Rollover Mitigation, a reversing camera (an essential driver's aid in a car of this size) and anti-lock braking system are standard in the Crossroad amongst other features.

Dimensions

Length: 4,910 mm
Width: 1,878 mm
Height: 1,691 mm
Wheelbase: 2,890 mm
Kerb weight: 1,820 kg (approx).

After Sales

The warranty period is for three years or 150,000 kilometres (whichever comes first). Conditions apply, of course.

Conclusion

With car buyers very interested in SUVs it makes perfect sense for Fiat Chrysler to offer the Freemont Crossroad to a hungry market.

For this type of multipurpose vehicle I have to admit that I find the Crossroad quite appealing - the SUV effect looks good!

Further, the satisfaction rating is enhanced when you realise that the value is, quite frankly, amazing!



NOTE: * Manufacturer's List Price (MLP) excludes dealer delivery fees and the numerous statutory charges (commonly known as on-road costs). Additionally, please note that all prices, fees and charges are subject to change without notice, as are the specifications.


E&OE



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