Of all the cars we have reviewed up to now on Flush the Fashion, the Fiat 500c Pop Twin Air is one of the cheapest, it is also the smallest and slowest.
It is also one of the best.
Driving a car should be something you find enjoyable and the 500c is a really fun car to drive. The mixture of 50’s styling nostalgia, together with up to the minute technology and performance is an irresistible combination.
Much the same way BMW did with the new Mini, Fiat should be applauded for taking such an iconic slice of Italian culture and and reinventing it for today’s car market. These are cars that deserve to evolve.
Incidentally since the new 500 was first launched in 2007 over 600,000 have been sold worldwide. It’s easy to see why it has been so popular.
The latest Twin Air Pop is one of the most environmentally friendly cars going and perfect for the ‘hustle and bustle’ of city life. Compared with Fiat’s 1.2-litre petrol engine the Fiat 500 TwinAir 875cc delivers 23 per cent more power yet has a 15 per cent reduction in CO2 (just 95g/km CO2) emissions.
Making this the cleanest quantity production petrol engine in the WORLD.
Drive it like a robot and you will also get 68.9mpg. I also like the sound it makes.. a fun mixture of a Ferrari and a hairdryer!
Put your foot down and it certainly goes. 0-62mph in 11 seconds is fairly nippy, but because the car is so light it feels much faster.[nggallery id=59]
Motorway driving is fairly good too.. I went from Norfolk to London and back and it bounced along happily. Had I been able to go faster than the speed limit, I could have reached 108mph.
Once I was in London I could forget about the congestion charge as the 500c exempt, that alone will save you a few quid, and because of it’s size parking becomes a realistic possibility.
Despite it’s retro feel, this is definitely a forward thinking motor. It incorporates the Start / Stop System used by many new cars – this is where the engine cuts out when you are in neutral at traffic lights etc. You get used to it fairly quickly and over time it saves on fuel.
The 500c’s dashboard is fairly minimal (which is good), but you will notice a big button next to the hazard warning indicator with the words ‘ECO’ written on it.
Press it in and the car goes even greener. By reducing the torque by 45Nm to 100Nm at 2000rpm more suitable for driving in a city environment. The steering also adjusts to a lighter feel so you can bob in and out of traffic.
The ‘C’ in 500c stands for (I think) convertible and you can have the roof in four different positions. Closed, open halfway, three quarters and right back. The transition from cool to über cool takes seconds, and it’s a really well designed system.
As a safety consideration with the roof down the car still retains it’s strength from the sides. In fact together with it’s ABS anti-lock brakes, seven airbags and Electronic Brakeforce distribution system gives the vehicle a 5 star EuroNCAP crash rating.
There are a few negatives, more niggles than anything. The boot is very small, so it would be no good for that skiing trip you were planning, and the seat adjustment lever is too close to the handbrake. Oh. and the indicators are very quiet so it’s easy to drive down the the road with it still blinking (well I did anyway!).
But these are trivial and what you do get is a lot of fun, and if you get one without the cool roof as cheap as £10,665. The 500c is around the £14,000 mark.
More info at www.fiat.co.uk