2017 FIAT 500e Review

Pros & Cons

  • 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
Other years
List Price Range
$9,500 - $10,990

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Which 500e does Edmunds recommend?

The 2017 Fiat 500e is offered as one model only. There is one trim level option, the eSport, if you prefer a more customized look. It adds darkened exterior accents and special wheels and looks pretty cool. But we prefer to save the roughly $500 and put the cash in our pocket because the 500e is stylized enough for our tastes as it stands.

Edmunds' Expert Review

Overall rating

4.0 / 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.

2017 FIAT 500e models

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.

Trim tested

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.

Driving

4.5
The 500e is an entertaining electric vehicle. It's actually quicker to 60 mph than a regular Fiat 500, and it keeps up with the 500 Turbo. Driving that enthusiastically will greatly reduce range, however, so it's best to keep a light foot.

Acceleration

4.5
Copious electric-motor torque gives the 500e great off-the-line punch. Our 500e scooted to 60 mph in 8.2 seconds, which is above average in the EV world and actually ties the Fiat 500 Turbo's time.

Braking

3.5
The brake pedal is firm and reassuring, and routine in-town stops feel, well, routine. Our panic stop from 60 mph took 129 feet — a little long, but not alarmingly so.

Steering

3.0
Oddly heavy and thick when driving straight, but it wakes up nicely and gives good feedback when bending through corners. Strangely, it feels more responsive than the steering in the standard Fiat 500.

Handling

5.0
The 500e stands apart from other electric vehicles with its great balance and an eagerness to turn. It's one of the most entertaining electric vehicles you can buy today.

Drivability

4.5
Smooth and seamless is the order of the day, but we wish the Fiat 500e offered the option of additional regenerative braking like some of its competitors.

Comfort

3.0
The Fiat 500e gives you the quietness you expect from an EV, but the suspension delivers a busier and more unsettled ride on uneven surfaces than we'd like.

Seat comfort

3.0
The front seat adjustments are fairly basic, but the cushion and backrest provide adequate support.

Ride comfort

2.0
Unlike the Spark EV, which delivers a polished ride despite its small size, the Fiat 500e pitches and bucks on its short wheelbase more than expected. The standard 500 rides noticeably smoother.

Noise & vibration

4.5
In true EV fashion, the 500e glides around in silence, at least when it comes to noise from the motor. Tire noise is noticeable, but mainly because there's no noise from anything else.

Interior

3.0
Like a regular Fiat 500, the 500e suffers from two things: form over function and, to a greater degree, a backseat that isn't terribly practical for family use. Think of it as a two-seater, and you'll get along with it much better.

EdmundsScorecard

Overall4.0 / 5
Driving4.5
Comfort3.0
Interior3.0

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2017 FIAT 500e.

5(43%)
4(29%)
3(14%)
2(14%)
1(0%)
4.0
7 reviews
Trending topics in reviews

Most helpful consumer reviews

A real-world 500e review
Chris Ginsburg,09/14/2017
Battery Electric 2dr Hatchback (electric DD)
We just bought a used 2014 500e with 28k miles. Dealers are currently offering nice pricing as many 2014's are coming off-lease and being turned in. We paid $7500 + tax. which seems very cheap for car that cost $30K a few years ago. The limited market and relatively high production volume keep the current resale value low. The car is blast to drive at lower speeds... It's very quick and can zip in and out of traffic lightning fast. It feels light, nimble and could probably beat many expensive sports cars up to about 60mph. If you install a 240v fast-charger in your garage and only commute in the city or shorter distances -- the car is fantastic. If you have to travel over 25 miles on the freeway to work, I'm sorry to say the car is a joke. I would not recommend this car for commuting. The problem is that once you exceed 50mph, the battery charge diminishes shockingly fast, to the point where you may be scared you won't make it. It almost seems as though the car needs some kind of overdrive system because it uses tons of energy at 65mph, even with no throttle. In the city, it has regenerative braking to help recharge, but on the highway the motor eats battery power like crazy. The fully-charged "96-mile range" can only last about 40 miles at 65mph. If you commute, you'd better have a fast-charger at work or you may not make it home.
Already broken after one year!
M Saun,08/21/2018
Battery Electric 2dr Hatchback (electric DD)
I've leased my 2-17 500e for one year (only 7k miles driven) and yesterday, it stopped taking a charge. Thankfully it is under warranty, and Fiat came to tow it to the dealership because it didn't have enough miles to get there. The dealership is 40 mins away, they're backed up and won't get to look at my car for another day, and they had no loaner car for me (although they did agree to cover my rental, if I made my way to Enterprise and dealt with that paperwork myself. Thanks for the terrific convenience, Fiat. If your car breaks on me while under warranty, you should probably consider making my experience very convenient.) On another note, we also have an electric BMW i3. I have driven it and the Fiat the same distance, and the BMW uses substantially less "miles" to go the same distance. I know it is said that the amount of miles used depends on how you drive it, but I find the Fiat to be far less reliable in terms of how far I can actually go, compared to the BMW (which is twice the price, so you get what you pay for!) Also, the suspension bounces all over the road, and it breaks very abruptly. I have skidded out a few times accelerating on a hill.
Best little overlooked car ever!
Tom,10/05/2019
Battery Electric 2dr Hatchback (electric DD)
Never could I possibly imagined how much I love this car.i have put over 30,000 miles on my 500e. It commutes easily and it actually alot of fun to drive. It is surprising quick and handles decent. Instant heat and a/c ,cannot understate how well they work. Would recommend a wet weather tire. I commute about 400 miles a week averaging 38mph & 139 mpge.
fiat 500e
Var Mar,11/28/2016
Battery Electric 2dr Hatchback (electric DD)
best car for lonely commute

Features & Specs

MPGe
121 city / 103 hwy
EPA kWh/100 mi
N/A
EPA Electricity Range
N/A
EPA Time to Charge Battery (at 240V)
N/A
See all Used 2017 FIAT 500e features & specs

Safety

Our experts like the 500e models:

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.

More about the 2017 FIAT 500e

Used 2017 FIAT 500e Overview

The Used 2017 FIAT 500e is offered in the following submodels: 500e Hatchback. Available styles include Battery Electric 2dr Hatchback (electric DD).

What's a good price on a Used 2017 FIAT 500e?

Price comparisons for Used 2017 FIAT 500e trim styles:

  • The Used 2017 FIAT 500e Battery Electric is priced between $9,500 and$10,990 with odometer readings between 6219 and6219 miles.

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 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. There are currently 13 used and CPO 2017 500es listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $9,500 and mileage as low as 6219 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2017 FIAT 500e.

Can't find a used 2017 FIAT 500es you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used FIAT 500e for sale - 12 great deals out of 15 listings starting at $7,914.

Find a used FIAT for sale - 10 great deals out of 11 listings starting at $14,306.

Find a used certified pre-owned FIAT 500e for sale - 4 great deals out of 15 listings starting at $24,229.

Find a used certified pre-owned FIAT for sale - 6 great deals out of 16 listings starting at $13,052.

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.

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