No more all-wheel drive
Fiat has announced local pricing and specification information for the refreshed 500X SUV, which kicks off at $24,990 before on-road costs.
The biggest changes have been wrought inside, where base Pop and top-spec Pop Star models now come with a 7.0-inch touchscreen, home to Fiat Chrysler's own Uconnect system, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Regardless of trim, the 500X is powered by a 1.4-litre MultiAir2 engine making 103kW and 230Nm. The base Pop is offered with a six-speed manual or a six-speed dry dual-clutch transmission, while the Pop Star is exclusively available with the DCT. Both models are front-wheel drive.
The real difference between the 500X Pop and Pop Star is down to semi-autonomous safety equipment. The top-spec car gets forward-collision warnings and auto-emergency braking, rear cross-traffic alerts, lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist and adaptive cruise control. Oh, and (critically) cornering fog lamps.
The safety gear won't be offered on the Pop, even as an option.
If that isn't enough, Fiat is offering 100 Launch Edition cars. Along with the standard gear you see above, it gets special 17-inch wheels, black leather (power operated front) seats, electric folding mirrors and a Beats Audio sound system, usually worth $1000. Although it costs $3000 more than the Pop Star, Fiat says the Launch Edition packs more than $5500 worth of extra gear.
As for the all-wheel drive powertrain? It won't be carrying on. Fiat Chrysler cites demand, telling CarAdvice the small-SUV segment is dominated by petrol (97 per cent of sales), front-wheel drive (92 per cent) and automatic (94 per cent) vehicles.
The MY18 500X has "been developed from a product and pricing perspective to target the volume opportunity in the segment" according to Fiat and, based on those numbers, we can't really argue with the logic.
2018 Fiat 500X pricing
All prices exclude on-road costs.