Test drive of the new Fiat 500: a great evolution!
After a field day in an Abarth 595 almost a year ago, then the discovery of the Fiat 500X last February, the Italian manufacturer has once again invited to discover and test the new version of the Fiat 500.
It's not always easy to grasp all the subtleties of the new features offered by a restyled model. This is the case for the Fiat 500, for example, which has been in service since 2007 and which unveiled a new face this summer. So what better way than to go and meet this new model to help you discover, for some, and re-discover, for others, the model sold more than 1.5 million copies worldwide (since 2007). Let's get started!
See you at the MotorVillage des Champs-Elysées
You could follow it live on Facebook, the starting point of the test took place at the MotorVillage of the Champs-Elysées. The opportunity to discover the "Summer Escape" event where some of the group's historic convertibles are on display FCA Fiat Dino Spider, Alfa Romeo Spider Duetto or Fiat 124 Spider.
To make the most of the Italian atmosphere of the day, we have lunch at the NoLita restaurant located on the top floor of the MotorVillage Champs-Elysées and which proposes a true Italian kitchen. If you are passing by, don't hesitate to book a table, it's delizioso!
Soul Blue, Coral Red or Opera Bordeaux?
2 pm: the tests start. After a rainy morning, we go with the other testers in front of the MotorVillage showcase where no less than 5 new generation Fiat 500 are waiting for us. Our choice will be a Fiat 500 Coral Red and its TwinAir 0.9 85 hp engine and Dualogic transmission.
Let's get on board! The interior is very colorful with many reminders of the body color. The speedometer is fully digital and the Uconnect system shows us the route via its 5-inch screen. Engine start.
The sound of the TwinAir 0.9 85 hp at low rpm is rather pleasant, slightly hoarse. Start-up of the navigation system for half a day in the new Fiat 500.
At ease in the city and in the country
We cross the Champs-Elysées and then the Place Charles-de-Gaulle where the robotized gearbox and the 85 hp will prove to be very useful. We head northwest of Paris where a section of highway allows us to get a new opinion on this Dualogic transmission and the 85 hp twin-cylinder engine thanks to a standing start at the toll booth. The feeling is very mixed. As much in the city, the dualogic automatic transmission was very pleasant, but on a standing start, the gears seem to shift much too earlyThe engine is more torquey at low revs than at high revs. The good thing is that finally, for an 85 hp gasoline engine, it is rather torquey, it almost feels like a diesel.
We leave the highway to drive on country roads. This is the opportunity to test the car's road holding and braking. Here, nothing to complain about, the little Italian car holds the road very well even on wet roads. The steering is precise and so is the braking. This car weighs less than a ton and is very playful. However, there's still that Dualogic gearbox that tends to shift too early. We prefer to shift in sequential mode with the paddles behind the steering wheel.
Duel between two generations
What's new compared to the 2007 Fiat 500? One stage of our journey allows us to compare our new Fiat 500 to its elder brother.
Thanks to this comparison, it becomes easier to spot small changes such as headlights, front bumper, new rims or new rear lights.
On board, we find a little bit of what the Fiat 500X had brought with it with, for example, the dashboard that recalls the color of the bodywork, the digital meter or the Uconnect system. The latter brings bluetooth connectivity, 3.5 mm jack, USB port, GPS navigation, etc. There is nothing to complain about in terms of finish, especially for a car in this category.
Dualogic or manual transmission?
During this stage, we exchange our 85 hp Fiat 500 Soul Blue with dualogic transmission by a Fiat 500 Coral Red 85 hp with manual gearbox. Enough to make a new series of shots!
While we are rather fond of automatic gearboxes (we really liked the 9-speed gearbox of the Fiat 500X for example), it turns out that in the case of this Fiat 500, we preferred the manual gearbox version. This one, with its 85 hp twin-cylinder engine, is much more playful.
We believe that the dualogic robotic transmission will suit those who have a "cool" driving style. Those who tend to drive sporty sometimes / often / all the time (even with an 85 hp engine) will prefer the manual gearbox.
Here we go again for a few years
It's not that easy to write a review of a car you already know and probably pass on the street every day. If the evolutions are there, it is not a revolution either.
To conclude this day, we liked the car's finish with its many options such as the Uconnect and its 6 speakers or the panoramic roof. The TwinAir 0.9 engine of 85 hp offers a raucous sound to the car and proves to be torquey and playful. The 4 real seats, the voluminous trunk and the numerous customization possibilities. The other way around, we liked less the dualogic robotized gearbox.
Note that this new Fiat 500 is available with a TwinAir 0.9 engine with 105 hp which we were not able to try but which should make this little Italian car even more playful! It is also available with a 69 hp petrol engine for the wiser ones.
In order to make your own opinion on this new Fiat 500, don't hesitate to book a test drive at your Fiat dealer nearest to you.