Fiat 500 and 500C – Q1
The updated Fiat 500 and 500C will bring their cutesy cool style to the Australian market in the first quarter of the year.
The styling updates to the 2016 Fiat 500 are relatively limited, with revised bumpers and a simple but stylish update to the lighting at both ends.
Inside there’s a new gloss-black centre fascia with large controls, a 5.0-inch touchscreen media display sits in place of the small monochrome version seen previously. The TomTom sat-nav dock is gone in favour of an integrated nav system, likely on high-end models.
The media system is powered by Fiat Chrysler’s Uconnect infotainment platform, offering Bluetooth, auxiliary and USB connectivity.
In top-spec models, there’s also Uconnect Live, offering access to the new Apple Carplay and Android Auto mobile phone connectivity functions – and all of the internet media streaming options that come with them.
New and more occupant-friendly materials and extra soundproofing throughout the cabin should make for a better in-cabin experience.
Engine options will likely carry on from the current 63kW/145Nm 0.9 litre twin-cylinder turbo, 51kW/102Nm 1.2 litre normally-aspirated four-cylinder and 74kW/131Nm 1.4 litre non-turbo petrol engines, along with the more powerful Abarth models.
Pricing is not yet confirmed. The current model kicks off at $16,000 for the Pop hatchback and ranges up to $24,500 for the 500C Lounge convertible version.
Fiat 124 Spider – Q3
It’s longer and has more Italo-American styling, though, and it has a turbocharged petrol 1.4-litre engine with 119kW of power and 250Nm of torque. Six-speed manual and six-speed auto options will be offered.
Mechanically, the Fiat and Mazda cars are otherwise identical, as far as today’s limited announcement reveals. There’s a double-wishbone front and multi-link rear suspension setup in both, and electric-assisted steering is likewise shared.
In the cabin the look is close to identical to the MX-5, from the dash and steering wheel to the roll-over hoops and even Mazda’s MZD Connect infotainment system.
Pricing is not yet confirmed for the Fiat 124 Spider, but it should start below $40,000. The MX-5 starts at $31,990.