4.2 out of 5 4.2
Parkers overall rating: 4.2 out of 5 4.2

Familiar looks for all-new all-electric Fiat city car

Fiat 500 Electric Hatchback (20 on) - rated 4.2 out of 5
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At a glance

New price £22,995 - £29,995
Lease from new From £341 p/m View lease deals
Used price £17,900 - £25,085
Used monthly cost From £447 per month
Fuel Economy 4.3 - 4.4 miles/kWh
New

PROS

  • Wonderfully stylish inside and out
  • Quick and fun to drive
  • Cheap to buy and run
  • Long range for a small car

CONS

  • If you want it well-equipped it'll be pricey
  • Entry-level version trades range for cost
  • Not particularly practical
  • You'll have to wait until March 2021

Fiat 500 Electric Hatchback rivals

Written by Tom Wiltshire on

Though it’s undergone many mild revisions, trim additions and styling tweaks, the Fiat 500 has remained pretty much the same since it launched in 2007.

That’s all changed for 2020, though. The new 500 (or the new new 500, depending on how you classify the classic 1957 model) is based on a totally fresh set of underpinnings. It’s all-electric, with combustion engines not even an option, and built in a new factory in Turin – leaving the existing 500 factory free to manufacture petrol-powered models for a few years yet.

Though unmistakably part of the same family as its predecessor, with styling that evokes the past while looking forward to our electrified future.

With a starting price of less than £20,000 (after the government's Plug-in Car Grant) Fiat's aiming the 500 at the heartland of cheap electric cars - putting it into contention with everything from the Volkswagen e-Up to the Renault Zoe.

Totally up-to-date with long-range electric powertrain

The new 500 is definitely a car of the post-2030 future. Instead of a petrol or diesel engine, it’s available exclusively with a 118hp electric motor and a choice of two different-sized battery packs.

The smaller 23.7kWh battery provides up to 115 miles of range, which is about on a par with its main rivals, the similarly stylish Honda e or MINI Electric. The 500's cheaper than both of those cars, though.

We suspect most will opt for the larger 42kWh battery pack, though, as this gives a range of 199 miles – enough that most people could last a couple of weeks of inner-city commuting and shopping trips without needing to top up in between.

Of course, most people will be charging their 500s at home, where the larger battery takes 15 hours 15 minutes on a 3 pin plug or 4 hours 15 on an 11kW home wallbox.

Out and about, you can get a 0-80% charge in just 35 minutes from an 85kW fast charger.

Stylish inside and out

The 500’s overall shape is as classic as it ever was – rounded, stubby and brimming with fun details. Take for example the door handles, which have been replaced with buttons and electric latches. Little fins on the bonnet line house the indicator repeaters and evoke the classic 500, while the lack of a combustion engine means there’s no need for a front grille – instead, you just get a ‘500’ logo.

The interior’s right on the money, too. It’s modern, in contrast to the retro charm of the old model, but for such a small car it feels amazingly high quality. Top-end models get digital dials combined with a widescreen infotainment display, while throughout the cabin buttons and switches have been minimised in a bid to make it as clean-looking as possible.

Available in four trim levels, or as a convertible

For those who like the wind in their hair – and there are plenty of them – it’s great to know that Fiat has continued to offer a 500C convertible for this new electric generation. So far the only four-seater electric soft-top on the market, we’ve covered it in its own separate review here.

Regardless of whether you choose a hard roof or a soft top, the 500’s available in several trim levels, all of which come with plenty of kit including a fully digital dashboard and air-conditioning. Lower-specification cars come with a bracket so your smartphone can perform double duty as an infotainment screen – not a bad idea, considering the size and quality of a modern smartphone screen.

Step further up and you’ll find either a 7.0 or 10.25-inch infotainment display, both of which are fitted with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

More interesting features include the materials on the inside, such as Seaqual, which is made from recycled ocean plastic, or so-called ‘eco-leather’ on top trim levels.

Excited by the new Fiat 500? Click here to read what we think of its practicality, interior, running costs or driving experience, or click here to skip straight to our verdict.

Fiat 500 Electric Hatchback rivals

Other Fiat 500 Electric models: