Fiat Jumbo Sizes the 500 with a L-arge ModelPosted by: Matt Iasenzaniro onNovember 29th, 2012
Apparently the Fiat 500 coupe and pseudo-convertible haven’t been selling that well in North America and they seem to think it’s because the 500 is too small because we’re now getting their L(arge) version of it for the 2014 model year. Fiat brought a couple examples of the 500L to the Los Angeles Auto Show. The 500L is a taller, longer, more spacious 500 with four doors and five seats and it looks like exactly that.
Luckily for us they gave it enough power to haul around that extra size. The 500L gets the 1.4L engine from the 500 Abarth, sending 160 horsepower through your choice of manual or automatic 6 speed transmissions down to the front wheels. Unluckily for us, we didn’t get the integrated coffee maker from the European version. Not that I think North American drivers could handle one anyway.
Another downside is that the 500L isn’t actually based on the 500 chassis, it’s based on the Fiat Panda which, I’m told, handles like the animal it’s named for. So if you’re looking for something with size and sportiness I’d look at a MINI Clubman instead. You lose a rear seat, but gain a decent balance of practicality and fun. That said, if you just want a stylish people carrier then you’d be remiss if you didn’t check this thing out.
Matt Iasenzaniro When he’s not busy writing about cars or travelling the auto show circuit, he’s reviewing apps and video games related to the automotive world. In his spare time, Matt is a motorcycle enthusiast, trying not to kill himself riding along with the crazy local drivers. He is also a weekly contributor in the Motor Mondays segment on News Talk 770.