The latest addition to Fiat’s 500 family blends practicality, good looks and low running costs writes Suzanne Keane
What is it? Following on from the success of the cute little Italian retro mini 500 the Fiat 500x is a practical family car with cute looks and retro touches.
Who is it aimed at? The 500x is aimed firmly at the crossover market it is intended to attract buyers in need of a larger and more practical car while retaining the character and detailing of the original 500.
Styling? From the outside the 500x looks like a beefed up 500. The friendly face with the round headlamps and chrome detailing has been retained. From the side it has a more muscular and curvy stance – our test car had 18” alloys and a rear spoiler.
Under the Bonnet? Powering our test car was a 1.6 120bhp diesel that does 0-100km in 10.5 seconds and has a top speed of 186km/h. The 500x 1.6 Diesel will cost €190 per year on road tax.
What about inside? Inside the cabin the retro detailing continues. The dashboard panel is colour coded to the outside of the car and logo stitching on the seats keeps it in the 500 family. At night the white lighting scheme (including illuminated cup holders) really sets off the dash and the touchscreen U-Connect system controls navigation, sound and Bluetooth connectivity. Steering wheel controls and cruise control are both easily accessible and overall the cabin is a comfortable cocoon. There’s plenty of boot space also and with the seats folded down it’s ideal for moving larger loads.
On the Road? In “Auto” mode the 1.6 diesel engine is more than capable for everyday driving and nipping around town. Switch into sport and the steering gets a little heavier and the engine gains more oomph. The boost gauge and G-meter indicator on the dash can be hypnotic but with your foot to the floor turbo lag is evident. Overall handling is great and it never fell short on power when really needed. At night time the cornering foglights are a useful addition.
And Safety? The 500x comes with Front, side and window airbags and it’s also available with ESC, Hill Holder, ABS, ERM and DST. Euro Ncap rating is 4 star due to?
Options? There are two styles of 500x available. One is designed for Urban use and comes in 2 wheel drive while the 4×4 version has more rugged styling and is more capable off-road. In typical 500 style there are plenty of options to choose from including different wheel styling and 7 different seat options. There are 3 engines available – 1.4 Turbo Multiair Petrol, 1.6 Multijet Diesel and a 2.0 Multijet Diesel in the 4×4 version. Gearbox options include a 6 speed manual and 9 speed automatic. The 500x is available in 5 trim levels – Pop, Popstar, Lounge, Cross and the range topping Cross Plus.
Will it break the bank? The 1.6L Diesel engine consumes 4.1L/100km on a combined cycles.
Verdict? The 500X is ideal for anyone who wants a cute but capable crossover with plenty of space – although make sure to choose a funky colour!
Why you’ll buy one? Retro styling with a 5 year warranty
Why you won’t? Once you add in the options it can be a little pricey.
Jeep Renegade – €22,950
Mazda CX-3 – €20,695
Suzuki Vitara -€19,999
Fiat 500x Lounge 1.6 Multijet 120hp
Engine: 1598cc 16v 4 cylinder Diesel
Max speed: 186 km/h
0-100 kph: 10.5 seconds
Emissions (Motor Tax): 109 g/km (€200)
Model price range: €19,750 – €33,200 (Test car €26,750)
No of Doors: 5 doors
Euro NCAP : 4 star
Fuel type: Diesel
Fuel Economy (combined cycle): 4.1 litres per 100 ( 68.9 mpg)
Boot Capacity Seats up(down): 245 litres
Car Seats: 2 isofix in the rear.
Length: 4248 mm
Width: 1796 mm
Height: 1600 mm
Wheelbase: 2570 mm
26th May, 2015