The 500 starts out with a 1.4-liter four-cylinder with 101 horsepower, matched to a five-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission. A turbocharged version makes 130 or 160 horsepower depending on the model.
The 500 is available in no less than five trim levels:
- Pop: Carries all the expected equipment in this class, plus a few surprises like heated mirrors, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and Bluetooth phone. The six-speaker sound system comes with a CD player and iPod interface.
- Sport: Retains the base engine, but adds a sport-tuned suspension, more aggressive interior and exterior trim, 16-inch wheels and an upgraded Alpine sound system.
- Turbo: Adds the 135-horsepower turbocharged engine along with upgraded brakes, a spoiler and specific interior trim.
- Lounge: Equipped like the Pop in terms of performance, but carries a raft of luxury upgrades like premium cloth upholstery, a fixed glass roof, automatic climate control, satellite radio and chrome exterior trim. The optional Luxury Leather Package adds leather seating with front heat, rear parking sensors and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. There's also the 1957 Edition of the Lounge, which commemorates the 500's first year of production with period color schemes, badging and wheel designs.
- Abarth: Packs the 160-horsepower turbocharged engine, plus aggressive styling touches throughout the firmest suspension turning in the lineup. You can even get summer performance tires on 17-inch wheels.
All models can get a TomTom navigation system and a Beats Audio Package with upgraded speakers and a subwoofer. There's also a handful of appearance packages that add subtle character to the 500.
Our main concern with the 500 is the standard 101-horsepower engine. That's simply not enough power for many buyers, especially when funneled throughout the automatic transmission. A brief test drive in the real world should tell you whether to upgrade to a turbocharged model.
Choose your FIAT 500 »