The Fiat FIRE family of petrol engines which made its Indian debut in the long gone Uno hatchback and has been powering all the subsequent Fiat’s in the country, is celebrating its 30th anniversary globally.
Since then the FIRE petrol motor became a crucial element in the success of every new Fiat including Uno, Tipo, Panda and Punto. Even the Dodge Dart and Jeep Renegade have FIRE motors in their lineup.
While the FIRE brand-name is synonymous with Fiat, the first ever engine of the long standing family debuted in a Lancia Y10 back in 1985 in the form of a 1.4-litre 16v unit. Going further back, the engine was actually a joint development effort by Fiat and PSA Group, under their 1980 contract. FIRE is an abbreviation, for Fully Integrated Robotized Engine. The four cylinder engines were designed with extensive use of computers, which was not a common and versatile machine then, and manufacturing involved computer-controlled / robotized units.
The thorough and reliable technical foundation of first Fiat FIRE engine has enabled the model to survive for so long, through various versions. The engine platform was also compatible for adding turbocharger, supercharger, use of different fuels like unleaded and CNG.
Over the years, Fiat introduced FIRE engine in 0.8l, 1.0l, 1.1l, 1.2l and 1.4l variants, with 8 or 16 valves. Today, the FIRE engine is available in power ranges from 69 hp to 140 hp. There is no telling as to how long the Fiat FIRE engine will remain in existence, but they surely will celebrate many more anniversaries.