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    2015 Fiat 500 Lineup Gets Some Updates


    • Ch-Ch-Changes Are In Store For The 2015 Fiat 500


    Fiat has announced some changes are incoming for the 2015 500 lineup.

    For starters, the 500 Turbo and Abarth models will now have the option of a six-speed automatic. Previously both models could only be equipped with a five-speed manual. The brand hopes the option of the automatic will bring more people into the showrooms.

    Other changes for the 500 lineup include the introduction of a seven-inch high-definition TFT instrument display that will display vehicle and infotainment data; a redesign center stack, and new color choices.

    "Since launching in March 2011, more than 135,000 Fiat 500 cars have been sold in North America. We continue to improve the successful 500, retaining its unique Italian flavor while adding unique features, such as a 7-inch TFT display, and incorporating Bluetooth streaming and a more functional center console,"said Jason Stoicevich, Head of FIAT Brand for North America, Chrysler Group LLC.

    The 2015 Fiat 500 lineup arrives at dealers this July.

    Source: Fiat

    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

    Press Release is on Page 2


    2015 Fiat 500 Lineup Now Features Innovative Instrument Panel with New 7-inch High-Definition Display

    - Seven-inch HD TFT display helps drivers to easily monitor and configure vehicle information

    - Other interior updates for driver convenience include Bluetooth streaming audio and a revamped center console with an additional USB port- Three new exterior paint colors for 2015 are Giallo Moderna Perla (modern pearl yellow), Laser Blu (bright metallic blue) and Billet Argento (billet silver)

    April 7, 2014 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - The 2015 Fiat 500 vehicle lineup, to be showcased at the 2014 New York International Auto Show, will include a number of interior enhancements for increased driver convenience and ease of use, including an advanced instrument panel with a 7-inch high-definition TFT (Thin Film Transistor) cluster display.

    The new 7-inch TFT cluster allows drivers to easily monitor data like speed, fuel level, Eco index and trip information. While on the main screen, an image of the vehicle is surrounded by information, including distance traveled, gas mileage and range. A parking screen helps drivers while moving in reverse if the vehicle is equipped with Rear Park Assist. Other screen options include a radio screen that displays information about the station selected and a telephone screen showing call information.

    When the vehicle is in Sport mode, the TFT display becomes more aggressive in appearance, complementing the Sport mode's more engaged driving experience.

    The TFT display will be standard on the 2015 Fiat 500 Sport, Lounge, Turbo and Abarth models, and optional on the Pop.

    Other interior updates for 2015 include a redesigned center console. To make it more useful for drivers, the revamped console includes a new cup holder design and an additional, conveniently located USB port that is fully functional and integrated with the radio. The 2015 Fiat 500 models will also include Bluetooth streaming audio in addition to the already standard Bluetooth phone connectivity.

    "Since launching in March 2011, more than 135,000 Fiat 500 cars have been sold in North America," said Jason Stoicevich, Head of FIAT Brand for North America, Chrysler Group LLC. "We continue to improve the successful 500, retaining its unique Italian flavor while adding unique features, such as a 7-inch TFT display, and incorporating Bluetooth streaming and a more functional center console."

    On the exterior, new paint colors for 2015 are Giallo Moderna Perla (modern pearl yellow), Laser Blu (bright metallic blue) and Billet Argento (billet silver).

    In addition to the interior improvements across the Fiat 500 lineup, the Fiat 500 Abarth, Abarth Cabrio and Turbo will add a six-speed automatic transmission as an option for 2015.

    The 2015 Fiat 500 lineup will be available in studios beginning in July 2014.

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    Interesting... my friend in Boston who bought a 500 last year wanted the Abarth or at least the Turbo, but wouldn't buy it without the automatic. Not because he can't drive manual (well... he can't...his shifting drives me nuts.. but he's owned a few) but because he didn't want a manual in the city.

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    So 45,000 cars a year, not bad for an ugly little turd. I can see an Automatic growing another 5-10K cars a year, but color, redesigned center stack and the TFT display I do not see helping dealers sell that much more. The two dealers here in the greater seattle area both have over 200 each on the lot and still have some new 2012 models they are not heavily discounting to try and sell since they are sitting on a butt load of 2013's and now the 2014's are here.

    Fiat needs to get a bigger version and 4 door version going.

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    Fiat needs to get a bigger version and 4 door version going.

    You know Fiat has a bigger version called the 500L.. Its on sale at the moment.

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    Fiat needs to get a bigger version and 4 door version going.

    You know Fiat has a bigger version called the 500L.. Its on sale at the moment.

    Forgot about that turd too, yet the dealer web sites here do not list any. Seems a glut of 2 door 2013 is the majority inventory.

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    Amazing in this day & age they wouldn't offer an auto in those models.

    I have worked on a college campus for the last year or so (Capital unviersity). I count three manuals on a campus with 3000 students....a Fit, a 2002 Miata similar to mine, and a Dodge Dart. Interestingly, the Dart and Fit are driven by females.

    Fiat needs to do something, theya re selling Fiats with major cash on the hood....

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    I've seen this one on TV for a week or 2 now :

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XBtVOmhnw-k

    Hilarious how infinitely "big" can be defined, eh?

    That is actually funny that they would even consider calling it BIG! :rofl:

    Amazing in this day & age they wouldn't offer an auto in those models.

    I have worked on a college campus for the last year or so (Capital unviersity). I count three manuals on a campus with 3000 students....a Fit, a 2002 Miata similar to mine, and a Dodge Dart. Interestingly, the Dart and Fit are driven by females.

    Fiat needs to do something, theya re selling Fiats with major cash on the hood....

    So you are saying that having performance with an auto transmission is a good thing.

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      View full article
    • By William Maley
      We're a few years out from the next-generation Subaru WRX and WRX STI. To help tide us over till then, Subaru has unveiled the refreshed 2018 WRX and WRX STI.
      Subaru has made some changes to the exterior, though it may be hard to notice at first since they look like the current model. There are new grilles and a set of larger air intakes. The Limited models of the WRX and WRX STI also get LED headlights that swivel when the steering wheel is turned. Inside, Subaru has both models a bit more bearable to live with thicker glass and added sound insulation to help reduce outside noise. Other improvements include better interior materials and larger infotainment systems for both models.
      Under the skin, both the WRX and STI see tweaks to the chassis and power steering. WRX models equipped with the six-speed manual feature a redesigned synchro design to improve feel and a new clutch that is smoother during gear changes. On STI models, the Driver’s Control Center Differential (DCCD) - vary the amount the torque being distributed - switches to a fully electronically controlled limited-slip differential. (The previous system used a combination of electronic and mechanical bits.) Subaru says the switch to an electronic system for the DCCD makes it smoother and quicker to respond. 
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      Source: Subaru
      Press Release is on Page 2

       
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    • By William Maley
      The last time I drove a Fiat 500C Abarth, it with six-speed automatic. I found it to be quite a cheeky vehicle with an exhaust note that makes you think you’re driving something a bit more powerful and a look that helped it stand out. But I couldn’t help but wonder how the Abarth is with the manual transmission. About a couple of months ago, I slipped behind the wheel of another 500C Abarth, this time with the manual. The end result was a bit of a letdown.
      The manual transmission in question is a five-speed and it isn’t any fun to use. The throw is somewhat long and imprecise. A few times, I found myself going into the wrong gear because I couldn’t tell where I was in the gear pattern. Not helping matters is the clutch which not only has a long travel, but it isn’t easy to find the takeoff point. This is one of those vehicles where the automatic makes more sense. The turbocharged 1.4L four-cylinder produces 160 horsepower and 170 pound-feet of torque. The engine is quite the performer with power coming on strong at low rpm. Engage the Sport mode and the engine becomes more spritely. Some reviews criticize the 500 Abarth’s suspension for being a bit too soft for a performance model. I really don’t see that as I think the Abarth strikes a good balance between handling and ride comfort. Yes, the Abarth will show a little bit more body roll in the corners. But it doesn’t detract from the quick direction change the vehicle is able to pull off thanks to its short wheelbase. The ride is slightly bouncy over bumps, but it isn’t to the point of annoyance. One area that the Abarth could use some improvement is in the steering. A little bit more road feel and weight would not be a bad thing for a performance hatch. If you happen to be a shrinking violet, then pass on getting the yellow paint like on my tester. The level of ‘LOOK AT ME’ is turned up to 11. Fiat will say the 500C is a convertible, but it is more of a targa - the roof rails and pillars stay up, and the canvas roof folds. But I do like that you can open or close it at speed. Visibility must have a different meaning in Italian than English since the view from the rear is almost nonexistent with the top up or down. The interior hasn’t changed much which is both good and bad. The good is the retro styling that adds a bit of charm. The bad are how the front seats feel like you're sitting on a stool. If there was a height adjustment for the seats or a telescoping adjustment for the steering wheel, this would ok. But since there isn’t, you’ll find yourself in a somewhat awkward seating position. As for pricing, the 500C Abarth with the manual begins at $26,695. With options, the as-tested price came to $31,695. The automatic if you wondering adds $1,350 to the price. But there is some good news over the horizon. Fiat will be cutting prices on a number of their models for 2017, with the biggest ones coming to the 500C. It might be worth waiting for the 2017 model since a lower price could make it slightly easier to convince yourself that you can live with something that is quite small, but packs a lot of character. But be sure to go with the automatic.  
      Disclaimer: Fiat Provided the 500C Abarth, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2016
      Make: Fiat
      Model: 500C
      Trim: Abarth
      Engine: Turbocharged 1.4L 16-Valve MultiAir Four-Cylinder
      Driveline: Five-Speed Manual, Front-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 160 @ 5,500
      Torque @ RPM: 170 @ 2,500-4,000 
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 28/34/30
      Curb Weight: 2,545 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Toluca, Mexico
      Base Price: $26,695
      As Tested Price: $31,965 (Includes $995 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      17-inch Forged Aluminum Hyper Black Wheels - $1,400.00
      Popular Equipment Package - $975.00
      Beats Audio Package - $700.00
      Giallo Moderna Perla (Modern Pearl Yellow) - $500.00
      Nero (Black) Mirror Cap with Body Side Stripe - $450.00
      Nero (Black) Trimmed Lights - $250.00

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