2013 FIAT 500 Hatchback - Rating Details


C
Edmunds Rating
Vehicle Tested 2013 Fiat 500 T Hatchback (1.4L 4-cyl. Turbo 5-speed Manual) Driven On 5/21/2013 Ratings Summary When all is said and done the Fiat 500 Turbo is a fun car to drive. While it lacks the customization, quality, and fundamentally solid underpinnings of its biggest competitor (therefore lacking that car's refinement, feedback, and desirability), it's still a kick.
B
Comfort The 500 T's ride comfort is far better than a Mini Cooper with the Sport package, but seating is lacking for a sporty hatch. Overall, considering its abilities, comfort is good.
Seating Comfort
C
Front seat comfort is good, but lateral support and a passenger armrest are lacking. It's off-putting that the steering wheel is off-center. Rear seats are sized only for kids.
Ride Comfort
A
One of the best-riding compact cars available; never busy, bouncy, or nervous. Really. This is truly a remarkable achievement considering its stubby proportions and sporty tires.
Quietness
B
The 500 T's growly exhaust is evident by design, adding character but not droning annoyingly on the freeway.
C
Interior Interior design is challenging at best with questionable ergonomics, cramped quarters, and barely enough cargo capacity for an overnighter.
Ergonomics
D
There's not a single knob on the Fiat's dash, not even audio volume: big mistake. Other problems include unintuitive, crowded, busy instrumentation and strange button locations.
Ingress/Egress
C
Wide-opening doors are a good thing unless you're in a tight parking stall, especially with a rear passenger. Passenger-side front seat does not return to original position.
Space/Room
C
Sunroof-equipped cars have compromised headroom. Rear seat space is extremely limited.
Visibility
B
One expects good visibility in compact car, yet its chunky middle roof-pillar inhibits over-the-shoulder glances and large rear roof-pillar hides cars, too.
Cargo/Storage
C
There's room for soft bags behind the rear seats without folding. Carrying anything larger will mean folding the 50/50 split-fold rear seats, but they don't go flat.
B
Performance The Turbo model is far quicker than the base 500. Engaging to drive quickly and reasonably well behaved. Still, shows why the even sportier Abarth exists.
Acceleration
B
The 135-hp 1.4L Turbo provides brisk acceleration from low rpm, but also has an entertainingly high redline and vastly improved manual shifter from previous 500s.
Braking
B
Squirms around more than we'd prefer during panic stops, but remains stable. Pedal offers little feedback and quick response, so it takes some practice to brake smoothly.
Steering
C
For an electric-assist system, steering precision and response are good, but not as good as Mini or Mazda. Feel is average and sometimes provides springy feedback.
Handling
B
Despite some body roll and reluctance in quick transitions, there's enough grip and athleticism here to post competitive numbers in our instrumented tests; better than many.
Driveability
B
Unlike the Mini Cooper S that can border on busy and frenetic, the 500 Turbo is more a relaxed experience. Sport button makes the acceleration jumpy.
B
Value Exercising restraint when ordering and while driving a 500 T improves its value, but that's not an easy assignment. Asking price of sporty 500 T lines up with that of base Mini Cooper.
Build Quality (vs. $)
C
The Fiat 500 (any version/trim) doesn't feel or look like a premium car inside like the Mini Cooper.
Features(vs. $)
B
Standard features are plentiful on the 500 T, some unexpectedly good ones like Bluetooth and a USB port that are often extras.
Cost
C
The most expensive option is a premium audio system, but that plus the sunroof and automatic climate control brings the total close to $25K.
MPG
B
EPA ratings of 28 city/34 highway are encouraging, yet our 27-mpg combined average in our heavy-footed Los Angeles-based driving feels closer to reality.
Warranty
B
The 4 year/50,000 mile warranty is decent, and includes roadside assistance for that time period.
Ownership
B
A big unknown. There's no North American track record to work from. On the other hand, oil changes and wear items like brake pads are covered for the first 3 years/36,000 miles
B
Fun To Drive Being fun to drive is the 500 T's biggest selling point. It makes good sounds, squirts effortlessly between corners and manhandles traffic. Yes, it's fun.
Driving Experience
B
Plan on driving aggressively or risk being cut-off in traffic. Why? Other driver's expect it to be a slow, base 500 and don't want to get stuck behind.
Personality
B
Sadly, besides the rewarding driving experience itself, there's little evidence of this being a special 500. Cute and cuddly gets old. Abarth is the answer.
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Edmunds Insurance Estimator

The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2013 FIAT 500 Hatchback in VA is:

$168 per month*
* Explanation
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