2012 Geneva Auto ShowJust the Facts:
- Fiat has released the first official photos of the new 500L.
- The five-door hatchback debuts at the Geneva auto show in early March.
- Fiat says the L stands for Large.
TURIN, Italy — Fiat has released the first official photos of the new 500L, ahead of the compact crossover's debut at the 2012 Geneva Auto Show. The car is expected to arrive in the U.S. in early 2013.
The boxy five-door, five-passenger hatchback bears a family resemblance to the slightly smaller, rounder Fiat 500, but will be built on Fiat's SUSW (Small U.S. Wide) platform, which also will underpin a new compact Jeep crossover in the U.S., as well as replacements overseas for the Fiat Punto and Palio.
Fiat says the L in the car's name "stands for Large." In fact, the 500L is less than 3 inches longer than the standard 500. Fiat says the 500L features "MPV passenger space combined with the feel of a small SUV on the road and the restrained dimensions and efficiency of a B-segment car."
Built in Serbia, the 500L will be launched in Europe in the fourth quarter with a choice of two gasoline engine and one turbodiesel.
Edmunds.com says: Fiat is pushing the 500L as "a distinctive alternative to the traditional B and C segments." In fact, it looks a plainer cousin to the Mini.