Fiat is finally taking the lucrative pickup truck segment seriously. The Italian car maker introduced a Jeep-based, unibody truck in Brazil a couple of weeks ago, and it has just lifted the veil off of the Fullback, its very first body-on-frame pickup, at the Dubai Motor Show.
It doesn’t take a particularly well-trained eye to tell that Fiat’s newest pickup is based on the Mitsubishi Triton, a truck that’s also known as the L200. It’s fitted with a Fiat-specific grille and a slightly revised lower bumper, but the headlights, the cab, the bed, and the tail lamps are all sourced directly from the Mitsubishi parts bin. That means the Fullback joins the Triton in boasting one of the longest rear overhangs in the entire industry.
Fiat offers the truck as a single cab, as an extended cab, as a double cab, and as a chassis cab. Properly configured, the Fullback is capable of hauling nearly 2,500 pounds.
Although the name Mitsubishi isn’t mentioned once in Fiat’s press release, the Euro-spec Fullback is available with a Mitsubishi-sourced 2.4-liter turbodiesel four-cylinder engine that can be ordered with either 150 or 180 horsepower. Buyers are asked to choose between rear- and four-wheel drive, and between a six-speed manual transmission and an optional five-speed automatic unit with a dubious sport mode.
Buyers outside of Europe have access to 2.5-liter diesel-burning turbo four tuned to make 110 or 178 horsepower, and a naturally aspirated, 2.4-liter, gasoline-powered mill rated at 132 ponies.
The 2016 Fiat Fullback is scheduled to go on sale next May in a host of global markets including Africa, the Middle East, and Europe. However, the truck will not take on the Chevrolet Colorado/GMC Canyon twins and the Toyota Tacoma in the United States because Fiat would need to build it in the United States to avoid the notorious Chicken Tax.