Essential and rational, the exterior styling of the Qubo also sets itself apart for the specific side and rear body treatments that pump up its muscular personality. In the same way, not even the bold and rugged good-looks of the front can compromise the overall impression of a “unconventional yet likeable” vehicle, just as its solid appearance and “four wheels on the ground” attitude are counterbalanced by the fluid and clean lines that ooze dynamism.
These aesthetic peculiarities are in keeping with the compact exterior dimensions – 3.96 metres long, 1.72 metres tall, and 1.68 metres wide – which when united with a steering diameter of less than 10 metres, allows the new Qubo to negotiate narrow downtown streets or the metropolitan traffic slaloms, becoming a new ingenious alternative to the city car and compact MPVs alike.
In more detail, the sturdy front bumper matches the body colour, protectively hugging the more delicate zones – headlights, bonnet, and radiator – especially against low-speed impact. The same sense of security is provided by the body side molding that allows the driver to manoeuvre in total confidence, even in tight spots, and by the matching wing rear-view mirrors that guarantee excellent visibility by reducing blind spots to a minimum. Plenty of glass on the doors and the ample windscreen (the front pillars have also been minimized) further increase what is already extraordinary visibility. Even the side glass creates an original visual effect that, combined with the lines drawn in correspondence to the mudguards, streamlines the entire side.
The rear hatchback lends a sophisticated design, bejewelled as it is with the central logo and stylized window, giving this vehicle something to shout about.
The overall charm of the Fiorino Qubo is further punctuated by the front and rear lights – characterised with transparencies and chromium plating, mounted high to protect them from eventual impact – and the front and rear doors, the latter of which are always sliding and feature plenty of glass to increase passenger comfort and functionality. Finally, the client can choose from among ten body colours and two types of interiors.
But enough about the outside. It’s inside where the new Qubo really struts its stuff. Thanks to an original concept – denominated “free space” – that combines different seat arrangements (for a total of sixteen) through the rationality and regularity of the interior spaces. The result is an exceptionally exploitable space for volume and flexibility: for example, with seats in a normal position, the boot measures 330 litres (up to the height of the boot panel) and 650 litres if measured to the roof. Instead, if the rear seats are removed and the front passenger folded down to the floor, the load capacity amounts to 2,500 litres (best in class) and a boot capable of holding objects nearly 2.5 metres long (a real record, if we consider that the vehicle measures a total of 3.9 metres in length).
The Fiorino Qubo seat represent the soul of the “free space” concept”: In fact, the alternative to the standard front passenger seat may be a specially designed seat that, when folded up with a simple gesture, can “disappear” into floor at boot level (while in an intermediate position it may function as a convenient table top!). Furthermore, the rear seats are available in 1/3 and 2/3 configurations, and can be folded or removed (completely or partially) thereby offering surprising load capacity and versatility.
So much for space and flexibility, but Fiorino Qubo is also a comfortable vehicle for all effects and purposes, as demonstrated by the symmetrical and modular T-shaped dashboard that serves up all the commands and a variety of instrumentation at the driver’s fingertips. But comfort on board also means storage space: so this is where the central console steps in to offer open organisational capacity. Plenty of space at the base of the transmission command on the dashboard, thanks to the roomy glove compartment. Even the door panels were studied to offer storage and a comfortable armrest. Moreover, the central tunnel also offers practical open storage compartments.
Finally, the boot is wonderfully and evenly spacious (972 mm wide, 737 mm deep, 545 mm height under the boot panel) with direct access to the loading level, while the rigid boot panel demonstrates it collaborative nature by “disappearing” easily in the space between the backrests and the wheelbox.