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Abarth 500e Convertible review

2023 onwards (change model)
Parkers overall rating: 3.2 out of 53.2
” No roof equals more fun “

At a glance

Price new £37,195 - £41,695
Used prices £23,198 - £32,065
Road tax cost £0
Insurance group 26 - 27
Get an insurance quote with Mustard logo
Fuel economy 3.3 - 3.5 miles/kWh
Range 150 - 158 miles
Miles per pound 5.2 - 10.3
View full specs for a specific version

Available fuel types

Fully electric

Pros & cons

  • Fun to drive
  • Easy to use electric roof
  • Classy interior
  • Annoying external sound generator
  • Traction issues in the cold and wet
  • Not up to hot hatch levels of pace and excitement

Written by Alan Taylor-Jones Published: 27 March 2024 Updated: 27 March 2024


Just like its combustion-engined sibling, the Abarth 500e Convertible offers hot hatch buyers a windier drive for a bit more cash. As we’ve come to expect, it’s not a traditional convertible as it’s really just a big canvas sunroof that extends beyond the rear screen. Still, that makes it stand out amongst the best small electric cars.

You lose a bit of practicality as the hatchback turns into a bootlid, but it’s unlikely you’re buying one for its space or flexibility. What’s more likely to be calling you is the promise of lively acceleration and entertaining handling, here provided by an electric motor and battery pack rather than a rowdy turbocharged petrol engine.

Abarth 500e Convertible driving profile

Soft top EVs are rather thin on the ground, but it’s likely to be a much cheaper and longer-range option than a MINI Electric Convertible (if you can find one). We don’t know if there’s going to be an alfresco Renault 5 E-Tech, but the retro styling and possibility of a big sunroof could appeal. Alternatively, there’s the more conventional but still classy Peugeot E-208, now available with a bit more poke.

What’s it like inside?

Save for a few brand specific touches, the Abarth 500e Convertible is much the same as the regular 500e Convertible inside. That means a 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. It responds snappily to commands and has impressive graphics, too.

There are no analogue instruments, just a 7.0-inch digital display that’s also of high resolution and is easy to read. Sensibly, you’ll find physical controls for key functions like the heater, making the 500e more user-friendly than rivals that rely too heavily on touch-sensitive icons and screens.

Abarth 500e Convertible driving position
Turismo trim’s Alcantara seats and dash insert really lift the interior.

To remind you that you’re in an Abarth and not a Fiat, there are plenty of logos dotted about the cabin and displays, plus a pair of sports seats. These and a chunk of the dashboard are wrapped in Alcantara on top Turismo trim to give a suitably sporty vibe, helping you overlook some of the hard plastics elsewhere.

Space up front is plentiful for such a small car, and there’s plenty of adjustment to the seat and steering wheel. Those used to the awful driving position in petrol Abarth 500s will no doubt welcome the far better driving position, although it’s still rather high.

The rear seats are best left to small children, very short adults or enemies. Legroom is exceptionally tight or non-existent with a tall driver, with the curved roof limiting headroom. At least in the convertible headroom gets infinitely better with the roof down.

Abarth 500e Convertible boot
With such a small boot, charging cables suddenly take up a lot of room.

As for the boot, it’s a small 185 litres and accessed by a bootlid rather than a hatchback. The access hole is small, but you can fold the rear seats down to open up a bit more space for cargo.


The standard sports seats have much bigger bolsters than a standard 500e, helping to keep you more secure as you’re scything through bends. They’re not quite as supportive as the best hot hatch seats, though. And the passenger seat doesn’t adjust for height. Tall front seat passengers might find their hair touching the roof.

As part of the roof remains intact, buffeting isn’t too bothersome with the windows up until you’re reaching the national speed limit. You can put it back in place at speed which is handy if it suddenly starts raining.

Abarth 500e Convertible rear seats
Tall front passengers can make rear legroom disappear.


As it’s fundamentally the same car as the Fiat 500 Electric, the Abarth 500e shares the same safety rating. That means a four-star score from Euro NCAP.

Abarth’s fitted the top-spec 500’s safety features as standard, which means you get drowsy driver detection, traffic sign monitoring, autonomous emergency braking, lane-keeping assist and intelligent speed assistance. Not a bad roster for a city car.

What’s it like to drive?

That partially depends on what driving mode you’re in. Turismo gives you 136hp and softer responses to help with efficiency, so you’ll need Scorpion Street for the full 154hp. Both modes have heavy regenerative braking to allow one-pedal driving, bringing you down to a complete stop without touching the brakes.

Abarth 500e Convertible front cornering
You can have fun in the bends, but it’s not as involving as the best hot hatches.

It’s well-judged for town driving, if annoying when manoeuvring at really low speed. We found ourselves predominantly in Scorpion Track which feels far more natural, with the 500e behaving more like a traditional car with a little engine braking. Brake pedal feel is good for an EV, making this mode the best choice for keen drivers.

Acceleration from 0-62mph takes 7.0 seconds flat, making it feel brisk rather than downright fast. The exception is when it’s cold or damp. It’s not any faster, but you’ll see the traction control light flickering away and feel the tyres break traction very easily. Try turning it off and you’ll still get plenty of electronic interference between bouts of wheelspin and torque steer as you accelerate hard from low speeds or a dead stop.

When not twisting in your hands under power, the steering feels usefully heavier than the regular 500e without going over the top. There’s some sense of connection to the front wheels that helps you gauge cornering force, but you’ll get more feedback from a good ICE hot hatch.

Abarth 500e Convertible rear cornering

They’ll also have a more entertaining balance, with the 500e unwilling to rotate pleasingly on corner entry like an i20 N or the dearly departed Fiesta ST. Picking a Convertible over a hatch certainly doesn’t destroy the driving dynamics though, with the former feeling almost as structurally rigid as the latter.

To get the Abarth to handle the way it does, the suspension fitted is significantly stiffer than in a regular 500e. This makes for an unsettled ride over poorly surfaced roads, although it’s not bad on the motorway. More annoying is the standard sound generator, that nosily burbles away when stationary for everyone around to hear. It’s a novelty at first, but the drone at constant speeds grates quickly, and you can only disable the noise when stationary.

Range and charging

The Abarth 500e uses the same 42kWh battery as the Fiat 500 Electric. The extra power means that the official line is a WLTP range of 157 miles per charge, versus the standard car’s best of 199 miles.

Abarth 500e Convertible static front

We’ve found the Abarth capable of around 140 miles in the real world over mixed roads, and around 120 miles at a motorway cruise – both figures dropping sharply if you drive more quickly. The range calculator is nice and accurate, helping to assuage range anxiety, but there’s no denying this is a limited car that probably won’t suit anyone who has to regularly travel long distances.

Maximum charging speed on the public EV network is a relatively slow 85kW, but because of the small battery it will still charge from 10% to 80% in around 35 minutes. On an 11kW charger it’ll top up to 100% in 4 hours 15 minutes, while the more common 7kW speed of most UK home chargers will need around 6 hours to complete a full charge.

What models and trims are available?

The entry-level model is simply called 500e. This is well equipped, including Apple CarPlay/Android Auto in addition to the built-in sat-nav, JBL hi-fi system, climate control, keyless go, rear parking sensors, 17-inch alloy wheels and the sound generator.

Upgrading to the more expensive Turismo spec nets you larger 18-inch alloys, wireless charging for your phone, 360-degree parking sensors, rear parking camera, blindspot monitors, heated seats, windscreen and mirrors, and that Alcantara interior finish.

Click through to our verdict page to see whether we recommend buying the Abarth 500e.

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