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Fiat 500e review: new edition of the classic

Fiat 500e featured image
Picture: TechnikNews
(Post picture: © 2023 TechnikNews)

The fiat 500e is the 2020 new small electric car from the Fiat brand. Fiat has developed its own electric platform for this one, which means that it doesn't have much in common with the combustion model of the 500, apart from the looks. In this test you will find out how the little Italian made himself.

The design is familiar to most, that friendly smile and the round shape of the car. The one from 1957 to 1977 served as a template for this proproduced Fiat Nuovo 500. Of course, the Fiat has gained in mass over this long period of time, which is noticeable in the greatly increased vehicle dimensions. For today, when cars are getting bigger and bigger, it's still quite small.

Externally: More modern and cheekier than its predecessor

With its 1,4 tons, the Fiat is a real “lightweight” among electric cars. In terms of size, it has remained true to the combustion engine model.

Our test car was rose gold in color with chrome-colored strips running laterally from the front to the rear. The little Italian is on the move on 17-inch alloy wheels with a diamond finish. For the design, Fiat used the 2018 combustion engine model and electrified it. From the front, the 500e greets you with a cheeky smile and the large 500 lettering. By dividing the full LED headlights, the front almost looks like a face with small cheeks.

Interior: only enough space in the front

When you get in, you realize how much space a Fiat 500 offers. A whole lot! In the interior, emphasis was placed on details. These can be found in the door handle in the form of a small Fiat Nuovos with the lettering "Made in Torino" and the Torino skyline in the smartphone tray below the infotainment. The seats bring atmosphere to the interior with their different fabric patterns and the copper-colored outer seams.

The car could also be quite interesting for older people, as it allows a high entrance and also offers enough space to get in and out thanks to the wide doors. What is not so nice are the seat belts, which are quite far back and are therefore difficult to reach. But you can get used to that. If necessary, it would make sense to offer a belt dispenser in a successor model.

Passengers can climb onto the rear bench seat through the passenger side. This is simplified by the suicide door, which can be opened in the opposite direction of travel. There is little space on the back seat itself compared to the front seats. This should not be the case for smaller passengers with a maximum height of 1,70 meters Prorepresent problem. At our ProAt 1,85 meters tall, the headroom and legroom were very tight.

Trunk: Plenty of storage space for a city runabout

The trunk offers enough space for normal purchases with its 185 liters. If more volume is required, the trunk can be expanded to 550 liters by folding down the rear seat bench. This means that the Fiat is not a miracle of space, but it still offers enough storage space for most activities. Unfortunately, you don't get a frunk from the factory, but there is the option of installing an aftermarket frunk.

Infotainment: Simple operation and good sound

The software of the 10,25-inch (about 26 centimeters screen diagonal) infotainment is clearly laid out and leaves open the possibility of using Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Both work flawlessly on the system. The standard Fiat sound system was installed in our test car. The sound is definitely something to be proud of. If that's not enough, Fiat offers an optional "JBL Premium Audio" speaker system as a tech package. The ventilation can be switched using buttons below the infotainment system or directly via the software. And if you want to have the car preheated before you start your journey, you can do so using the Fiat app or the infotainment option.

Driving impression: Agile and sporty

With its 87 kilowatts (118 hp), the Fiat is not necessarily a power pack, but due to its size and the resulting low weight it is still quite fast and manoeuvrable. In inner-city traffic, it is the car in its element and can be driven very comfortably with its one-pedal mode. With the "Sherpa" driving mode, the car has a little more range thanks to the more efficient control of the drive, air conditioning and power steering. The 500 is rather unsuitable for longer journeys due to the lack of range and the somewhat hard suspension, but it is quite useful for shorter cross-country journeys. Autonomous driving with the Fiat works quite well so far, but with a few limitations. The Fiat 500e doesn't like sharp curves and no lane markings - it often loses its lane. The same applies at low temperatures with snowfall. It can happen that the sensors of autonomous driving are covered or snowed over and become completely unusable for the moment.

Charging power and range: Good speed and enough range

With the specified charging capacity of 85 kilowatts, the 42 kilowatt-hour battery charges up to 35 within 80 minutes Procent. That's a pretty good value, since the Fiat is designed as a city car, so with a range of almost 230 kilometers you can go anywhere without having to charge in the same day. With the specified consumption of 14,3 kilowatt hours pro 100 kilometers it is quite economical, although we were able to achieve slightly lower consumption with the "Sherpa" mode.


Conclusion: Ideal city car with room for improvement

Fiat does a lot of things right with the 500e. Despite a few small flaws, it is a successful city car. For the starting price of 31.000 euros you get quite a lot of car for your money. The short wheelbase and the resulting maneuverability make the Fiat 500e a fun city car, with which there is definitely no Proproblem will be finding a suitable parking space. Autonomous driving still has room for improvement, but at the price it's nice to have the feature on board at all. The range is completely sufficient for the size of the vehicle and the consumption is impressive. All in all a successful overall package.

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