2015 FIAT 500 Photo
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Reviewed by Bengt Halvorson
Deputy Editor, The Car Connection
Quick Take
The Fiat 500 is one of the most stylish ways to choose a small car today, and the Abarth and Turbo models add more excitement for the driver. Read more »
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2015 Fiat 500
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Decision Guide
Opinions from around the Web

The design, by Fiat & Abarth style director Roberto Giolito, obviously is inspired by the classic Cinquecento that was first introduced in 1957.

Automobile »

Where Fiat scores its most style points is on the inside, where its combination of attractive, body-colored plastics and retro design make the Mini seem like its interiors were crafted by Fisher-Price.

Jalopnik »

Though not as affable as the Mini, the 500’s bubble-car profile and pencil-moustache expression promise distinction. »

...Puppy dog cuteness...

Edmunds »
Pricing and Specifications by Style
$16,645 $22,395
2-Door HB Pop
Gas Mileage 31 mpg City/40 mpg Hwy
Engine Premium Unleaded I-4, 1.4 L
EPA Class Minicompact Cars
Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity 4
Passenger Doors 2
Body Style 2dr Car
See Detailed Specs »
6.8 out of 10
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Choose a Style Below for Colors and Options
2015 FIAT 500 2-Door HB Pop
2-Door HB Pop
Premium Unleaded I-4, 1.4 L
Front Wheel Drive
$ 16,355 $ 16,645
2015 FIAT 500 2-Door HB Lounge
2-Door HB Lounge
Premium Unleaded I-4, 1.4 L
Front Wheel Drive
$ 18,173 $ 18,600
2015 FIAT 500 2-Door HB Abarth
2-Door HB Abarth
Intercooled Turbo Premium Unleaded I-4, 1.4 L
Front Wheel Drive
$ 21,702 $ 22,395
2015 FIAT 500 2-Door HB Turbo
2-Door HB Turbo
Intercooled Turbo Premium Unleaded I-4, 1.4 L
Front Wheel Drive
$ 19,103 $ 19,600
More Styles »

The Basics:

The 2015 Fiat 500 manages to merge fun and practical in with cute and quirky—just in the right amount that should win over urban commuters. It's an excellent city car for small parking spaces—and a surprisingly sporty or fuel-efficient one, depending on which model you choose.

We love the Abarth editions, which have picked up the "Hellrat" nickname (an homage to the new 707-hp Dodge Charger and Challenger Hellcat cars), and the 500e is an amazingly perky electric car that's unfortunately not available to drivers who don't live near the West Coast.

What we don't love: the 500's minuscule rear-seat space, its poor front-seat ergonomics, and its low crash-test scores.

With that pert, upright styling, done in simple, yet somehow characterful lines (as well as lots of chances for customization), the Fiat 500 looks like no other. In its very small footprint and almost toylike dimensions, the Fiat 500 has likely already carved out an impression to most Americans who've seen one. On the outside it manages to pull off short, tall hatchback proportions without looking awkward; and inside, it pulls off high style with relatively low-cost materials -- without necessarily looking it.

The 500 is engaging to drive by almost any measure. Base cars get a 101-horsepower engine that's not quite as peppy or perky as you'd expect in something with the 500's design; but the Turbo models and their 135-hp engine are the ones that make good on the promises of the exterior. Above that, it's the 160-horsepower Abarth that actually feels truly sporty, especially in the first three gears of this manual-transmission-only model. The Abarth also supplements that impression with an especially raucous exhaust note.

As you work up the power range, you also work up to more sporty visual cues and more firmly tuned suspensions. Even in the sporty Abarth, however, ride quality is quite good for a lightweight, short-wheelbase car. Throughout the lineup, you now have a choice between an automatic transmission or manual gearbox. Our driving time has exclusively been spent in manual versions, so far; but for 2015 the 500 Turbo, Abarth, and Abarth Cabrio models all gain the option of a six-speed automatic transmission.

The Fiat 500 maxes out its interior space within its particularly small footprint, but the passenger package isn't nearly as roomy as a Ford Fiesta, or even a MINI Cooper. Seats are well-formed, but they're a bit on the short and firm side and we wish they didn't push up so high, limiting headroom. For those who miss a real back seat, we recommend the 2015 Fiat 500L, which is covered by a different review. Perhaps confusingly, the 500L is almost entirely a different car, and actually built on a different platform.

For 2015, a new, 7-inch LCD display replaces the previous instrument cluster in every model except for the base Pop 500, where the display is optional. There are again three main variants: the 500, the 500C, and the 500 Abarth. Base 500 Pop models include a five-speed manual transmission, 15-inch wheels, air conditioning, a CD player and an auxiliary audio jack, power windows/locks/mirrors, and cruise control. With Sport models you get larger 16-inch wheels, a fixed glass roof, and a sport-tuned suspension and sport-bolstered seats. Fiat 500 Sport models revert to 15-inch wheels and hang on to the glass roof but add a six-speed automatic and rear park assist, along with satellite radio, premium speakers and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.


  • Turbo models add fun
  • Rev-happy engines
  • An exterior like no other mini
  • Fantastic interior styling
  • Strong feature set


  • Gas mileage still not stellar
  • It's not as quick as you might hope
  • Short, high seats limit comfort and headroom
  • Very small interior
Next: Interior / Exterior »

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