2017 FIAT 500e
- As much fun to drive as its gasoline-powered counterparts
- Plenty of range for daily errands and commutes
- Compact and easy to park
- Sales are limited to California and Oregon
- Battery pack location shrinks rear cargo space
- Backseat passengers also lose legroom due to the battery pack
2017 FIAT 500e pricingin Ashburn, VA
Which 500e does Edmunds recommend?
Edmunds' Expert Review
Overall rating4 / 5
You don't have to give up much to go electric. The 2017 Fiat 500e hatchback is just as fun and personable as the regular 500. It is also as quick and maneuverable. But you will still want to consider whether an electric vehicle fits your lifestyle before taking the plunge.
The electric 500e was introduced in 2013 and instantly injected life into the stylish Italian coupe. It has enough range to compete with segment leaders and charges quickly, too. Add its small proportions, precise handling and EV pep, and you get a truly enjoyable car. In fact, in some ways, the 500e is more fun to drive than its gas counterpart. Yet there are drawbacks. Its backseat is small, some controls are awkwardly placed, and cargo space is limited due to the battery. But if you are shopping for a lively runabout and an electric vehicle is right for you, the 500e is worth considering.
Trim levels & features
The 2017 Fiat 500e is a two-door, pure electric hatchback sold in a single, well-equipped trim level. The 500e is powered by an 83-kilowatt electric motor (111 horsepower, 147 pound-feet) channeled to the front wheels through a single-speed automatic transmission. A rechargeable 24-kWh lithium-ion battery pack powers the motor. It shares most of its bodywork with the standard, gasoline car but has unique front and rear body panels, wider side sills, smooth underbody components, rear spoiler and 500e-specific 15-inch alloy wheels.
Standard features for the 500e include heated side mirrors, rear parking sensors, automatic climate control, full power accessories, steering-wheel-mounted audio controls, cruise control, manually adjustable heated front seats with driver-side height adjustment, premium vinyl upholstery, a leather-wrapped tilt-adjustable steering wheel, an auto-dimming rearview mirror and 50/50-split folding rear seats. Standard technology features include Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity and a 5-inch touchscreen, navigation, voice commands, and a six-speaker Alpine audio system with a CD player, satellite radio, a USB port and an auxiliary audio jack.
The only options are a sunroof and the eSport appearance package that includes darkened exterior lamp bezels, orange exterior trim pieces and special 15-inch wheels for a more customized look.
Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions, although trim levels share many aspects. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the 2013 Fiat 500e (electric 1-speed direct drive).
NOTE: Since this test was conducted, the current Fiat 500e has received some revisions. For 2015 these included a redesigned center console and two new exterior color choices. And in 2016 it received an updated infotainment system with integrated navigation and discontinued the ePass program that had provided 500e owners free rentals of gas-powered 500s. Our findings remain broadly applicable to this year's Fiat 500e.
Noise & vibration4.5
Most helpful consumer reviews
Features & Specs
Our experts’ favorite 500e safety features:
- ParkSense Parking Assist System
- Emits an audible tone to notify the driver of objects to the rear when the vehicle is backing up.
- Front Seat-Belt Pre-tensioners
- Uses information from the car's brake and stability control sensors to anticipate a crash and tightens the seat belt in preparation.
- Reactive Head Restraints
- In the event of a rear impact, extends the front seat headrests forward, minimizing the gap between occupants' heads and the headrest.
If you're ready to make the switch to an electric car, the Fiat 500e is a great way to do it. The battery-powered 500e has all the personality and character of the gasoline-powered Fiat 500. It offers a competitive range of 84 miles and quick charging times. Unfortunately, if you live outside of California or Oregon, there's not much point in reading further. The 500e is only sold in those two states.
For the most part, everything we like about the Fiat 500 carries over to the electric version, and then some. The interior is a love-it-or-hate-it affair, but you can't accuse the 500e of being a shrinking violet, given its quirky dashboard shapes, (optional) bright colors and push-button transmission.
The 500e is good fun to drive. In fact, its 83-kilowatt electric motor, providing 111 horsepower and 147 pound-feet of torque, is actually quicker than the gas-powered Fiat 500. We clocked a zero-to-60-mph time of 8.2 seconds, which is equal to the sporty 500 Turbo, though it's not as quick as some other electric cars. The 24-kWh lithium-ion battery provides 84 miles of range, which is a bit less than other small electric cars. It's fairly efficient, too, with an EPA mpg equivalent rating of 112 miles combined (121 city/103 highway).
The 500e's steering feels heavy on-center, especially at low speeds, but it seems to wake up in the curves, and the steering system is more responsive than that of the gasoline-powered 500. Compare it to other electric cars, and there's no contest: The 500e is one of the most entertaining electrics on the road.
Unfortunately, most of our complaints about the gasoline-powered 500 carry over to the electric version, topped by some electric-specific shortcomings.
While the 500e treats its front-seat passengers nicely, with supportive seats and rather simple adjustments, the backseat is nearly useless for anyone other than small kids. And even they might have a difficult time wriggling back there. Also, the ride isn't as smooth as you'll find in the gasoline-powered 500: The 500e pitches and bucks on its short wheelbase. Finally, most electric cars have a regenerative mode that provides extra braking from the motor and also serves to charge the battery. The Fiat 500e doesn't have such a mode, and we wish it did.
Fiat sells the 500e in a single trim level, with an optional eSport package that livens up the already lively styling. Let Edmunds help find the perfect 2017 Fiat 500e for you.
2017 FIAT 500e Overview
The 2017 FIAT 500e is offered in the following submodels: 500e Hatchback. Available styles include Battery Electric 2dr Hatchback (electric DD).
What do people think of the 2017 FIAT 500e?
Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2017 FIAT 500e and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2017 500e 3.5 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2017 500e.
Edmunds Expert Reviews
Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2017 FIAT 500e and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2017 500e featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.
Our Review Process
This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.
Which 2017 FIAT 500es are available in my area?
Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2017 FIAT 500e for sale near. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the Carfax and Autocheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2017 FIAT 500e.
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Find a new FIAT 500e for sale - 10 great deals out of 14 listings starting at $20,997.
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Should I lease or buy a 2017 FIAT 500e?
Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.