It's small and cheap, very practical, doesn't need much fuel, comes in funky colors and has four-wheel drive to extend its capabilities. This Antarctica Edition also has a penguin, but that's hardly the point.

America only gets Fiat's 500 line because the Panda wasn't fancy enough to be worth a complete redesign. Here in Hungary, we can only buy a Panda 4x4 with the 1.3 Multijet diesel. Once again, the British win the cars-on-sale game.

To celebrate the Panda 4x4's 30th anniversary (31st according to my records, but whatever) and the 500,000th sold unit, Fiat sent 300 Antarctica Editions to the UK, available only in white with a black roof, orange detailing, 15-inch alloys, dark-tinted glass and a few badges with penguins and numbers.

But it's not the special equipment that makes me want this car. The standard package does the job just fine.


It has the clever two-cylinder TwinAir engine producing 85 horsepower, air conditioning, an electronic locking differential, a heavy duty suspension, mud-and-snow tires and a lifted body with rigid protective bits all around.

It's light and nimble chassis means it can take you through some surprisingly tough terrain on the weekends while as a daily driver, it's hard to find a car that is easier to park.



Is there a better small car all-rounder out there right now, or am I right that the Panda 4x4 is the king of the hill?