What Is It?
2016 Fiat 500X
What's New About This Model?
The 2016 Fiat 500X is an all-new model from Fiat. Based on the same platform that underpins the new Jeep Renegade, the 500X is aimed at hip, active, urban buyers who need more space and a higher riding position than a normal 500 can give.
When Does It Go on Sale?
No sale date has been announced, but it's safe to assume we won't see this one on our shores until at least the summer of 2015.
How Much Does It Cost?
Again, Fiat's made no commitment or announcement here, but assume a starting price of a little more than the 500L which starts at $20,000.
How Many Body Styles and Trim Levels Are There?
The 2016 Fiat 500X is one four-door hatchback body style and two trims. One trim is described as "elegant" and is aimed at city folk. The other will have a more off-road vibe for people who think the Jeep Renegade is just too aggressive. There will be 12 colors available and three sizes of wheels: 16, 17 and 18 inches.
What Kind of Engines and Transmissions Does It Have?
- 1.4-liter Turbo MultiAir II, 140 horsepower (six-speed manual, front-wheel drive)
- 1.6-liter MultiJet II, 120 hp (six-speed manual, front-wheel drive)
- 2.0-liter MultiJet II, 140 hp (nine-speed automatic, four-wheel drive)
- 2.4-liter Tigershark, 184 hp (nine-speed automatic, four-wheel drive)
- 1.3-liter MultiJet II diesel, 95 hp (five-speed manual, front-wheel drive)
- 2.0-liter MultiJet II diesel, 140 hp (six-speed manual, four-wheel drive)
What Unique Features Does It Offer?
The Fiat 500X leans quite heavily on its drivetrain options to stand out. Not only are there myriad options (see above), but there are some clever technologies at work. Like with its Jeep cousins (Jeep is a part of Fiat Chrysler Autos [FCA] remember) the 500X gets the nine-speed automatic. It also has a 4WD setup that reduces parasitic drag by disconnecting the rear axle when driving the rear wheels isn't necessary.
The 500X also gets Fiat's "Drive Mode Selector" which tweaks the settings on the engine, brakes, steering and transmission to suit the driving situation. When paired with 4WD it also helps speed up torque flowing to the rear axle.
And because FCA is already in bed with Dr. Dre, the 500X is available with a Beats stereo system.
What Kind of Standard and Optional Safety Equipment Is Offered?
Six airbags are standard as are daytime running lights with cornering function (this feature may not make it to the States) and electronic stability control. Optional safety features include a lane-departure warning system, lane-change assist, reverse brake assist and a rear parking camera.
What Models Will It Compete Against?
Mercedes-Benz GLA: A more sophisticated and civilized approach to the compact cute-ute segment, the GLA is the conservative bookend to the Juke. The Fiat 500X aims to split the difference.
Nissan Juke: The Juke may be a hopelessly strange-looking vehicle, but it's a remarkably useful shape in a city-friendly package. It hauls stuff and people, is easy to park and is easy on gas. And while its poison-frog shape may not be to every taste, there's no denying the Juke's got style.
Should You Wait for It?
As nothing about the North American version of this one has been officially announced, waiting for it could leave you stalking Fiat sales floors for months to come. Instead, the Jeep Renegade, Mercedes GLA and Nissan Juke are all solid options. Or, if you don't need the all-wheel drive, a Fiat 500L might do the trick.