Jump to content
  • Greetings Guest!

    CheersandGears.com was founded in 2001 and is one of the oldest continuously operating automotive forums out there.  Come see why we have users who visit nearly every day for the past 16+ years. Signup is fast and free, or you can opt for a premium subscription to view the site ad-free.

Recommended Posts

It has been quite awhile since we did an interactive review (two years). But I thought it was time to bring it back. You might have questions for a particular vehicle and I can do my best to answer them. It also gives you guys a preview of what will be coming round the car review docket.

So let us begin with this week's test vehicle - the 2015 Fiat 500L Easy. This is the biggest model in the Fiat lineup (until the Fiat 500X hits dealers), which really isn't saying a lot. I haven't spent a lot time driving the 500L since it came yesterday because I was feeling a bit sick. But I did spend some time poking around 500L and can give some thoughts.

  • Not quite sure about the 500L's looks. I think some of this is due to the red paint and the standard wheels on the Easy model. I would go for the Trekking model as it swaps wheels and adds some body cladding to make it slightly better to look at.
  • The interior feels very spacious thanks to the large amount of glass used on the 500L. Feels very airy.
  • Chrysler's UConnect system is present and quite easy to use. Unlike other Chrysler models, the 500L uses a 6-inch screen. I find it quite easy to use and look at a glance.
  • I do want to smack the designer who decided to put the HVAC controls way down in the center stack - they're hard to reach and glance at.
  • The back seat mostly earns positive marks. Fiat raised the seats to allow passengers a better view, and legroom is quite excellent. The downside is headroom. My 5'8" frame was touching the roof liner, so taller passengers will have to crick their head if they want to feel comfortable. This is due to my tester being equipped with a panoramic sunroof.
  • Base price of the 500L Easy is $20,545. My tester rings in $26,895 thanks to two options. A six-speed automatic for $1,350 and the Easy Collection 4 package which includes UConnect, sunroof, Beats audio system, dual-zone climate control, and other features for $4,100.

I'll be updating this throughout the week with more impressions and answers to your questions.


View full article

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

having driven these,

 

not bad and appealing from a space and function standpoint.

 

lots of turbo lag though, and lots of major issues with their DCT.  I think FCA ordered up newer ones to mate to the regular six speed from now on.

 

These things have a horrible rap for quality already.  I wonder if it will catch up with them.  Otherwise to me it would be possibly on a list to consider in future.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

lots of turbo lag though, and lots of major issues with their DCT.  I think FCA ordered up newer ones to mate to the regular six speed from now on.

 

These things have a horrible rap for quality already.  I wonder if it will catch up with them.  Otherwise to me it would be possibly on a list to consider in future.

 

I haven't noticed any turbo-lag in my tester, and yes newer 500Ls do have a six-speed automatic. Although I have found that the programming is somewhat screwy as the transmission tends to hold onto gears much longer that I think it should.

I have an update tomorrow on some first impressions.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

lots of turbo lag though, and lots of major issues with their DCT.  I think FCA ordered up newer ones to mate to the regular six speed from now on.

 

These things have a horrible rap for quality already.  I wonder if it will catch up with them.  Otherwise to me it would be possibly on a list to consider in future.

 

I haven't noticed any turbo-lag in my tester, and yes newer 500Ls do have a six-speed automatic. Although I have found that the programming is somewhat screwy as the transmission tends to hold onto gears much longer that I think it should.

I have an update tomorrow on some first impressions.

 

 

How is road/engine/wind noise at speed?  The Fiats I've driven have been loud.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How is the initial first impression when you get in and close the door? Every time I get in one, it sounds like a cheap tin can and rattles, noise, etc. Just screams YUGO!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

lots of turbo lag though, and lots of major issues with their DCT.  I think FCA ordered up newer ones to mate to the regular six speed from now on.

 

These things have a horrible rap for quality already.  I wonder if it will catch up with them.  Otherwise to me it would be possibly on a list to consider in future.

 

I haven't noticed any turbo-lag in my tester, and yes newer 500Ls do have a six-speed automatic. Although I have found that the programming is somewhat screwy as the transmission tends to hold onto gears much longer that I think it should.

I have an update tomorrow on some first impressions.

 

 

How is road/engine/wind noise at speed?  The Fiats I've driven have been loud.

 

 

The 500L with wind and road noise is quite excellent. I did some highway driving over the past couple of days and was surprised how quiet it was when compared to the 500C I drove a few weeks back. Engine noise is somewhat apparent, but it doesn't bug me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also, I think the 500X is smaller than the 500L

 

I just looked up the spec sheets on both models and they are almost the same size in length and width.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How is the initial first impression when you get in and close the door? Every time I get in one, it sounds like a cheap tin can and rattles, noise, etc. Just screams YUGO!

 

I was surprised by how well built it was - that should be expected for a 3,000 mile example. No rattles or noises.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So I spent a few days in the 500L and I have to say I'm really impressed. Aside from the looks which I'm still not feeling, the rest of the car is really impressive. The engine is quite punchy and responsive. Ride is comfortable and quiet. I like the interior and most of the dashboard layout - aside from the HVAC controls which I complained about my original post.

 

One issue I do have is with the optional six-speed automatic. It doesn't seem its perfectly matched to the 1.4T as the transmission doesn't shift till it reaches 3,000+ rpm. I'm wondering if this is an issue with this car or something else.

 

Now I have this car for a couple more days, so if you have questions, get them in now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is there a sport mode in the transmission? Try that and see what happens to the shift points.

 

There is not. I have been using the manumatic mode to make it a little bit better.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Transmission electrical airbags stalling consumer reports least reliable. Fiat forums are a bit of a hoot to read.

500x I think is a squashed 500l. Might even have the same dash.

Also some good fiat forums on the turbo lag. Maybe it's only evident on the stick or Dct.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your content will need to be approved by a moderator

Guest
You are commenting as a guest. If you have an account, please sign in.
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.




  • Similar Content

    • By William Maley
      FCA US Reports June 2018 Sales
      FCA reports best June retail sales in 14 years Jeep® brand reports its best month of June sales ever, up 19 percent Ram Truck brand posts best June sales ever, up 6 percent Jeep Cherokee reports best month of sales ever, up 89 percent July 3, 2018 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - FCA US LLC today reported June 2018 sales of 202,264 vehicles, an 8 percent increase compared with sales in June 2017 of 187,348 vehicles.
       
      Overall sales were bolstered by both the Jeep® and Ram Truck brands, which reported significant increases for the month. FCA retail sales came in at 155,208, marking the best June sales since 2004 when sales reached 155,663 vehicles. Fleet accounted for 23 percent of total sales, a 1 percent decline from the previous year.
       
      Jeep Brand
      Jeep brand notched its best month of June sales ever with 86,989 vehicles sold compared with 73,153 in June 2017. Driving the results were the Cherokee, Compass and Wrangler nameplates. Cherokee and Compass sales nearly doubled, with Cherokee reporting 22,433 vehicle sales compared with 11,895 in June 2017. Compass sales were 15,142 compared with 8,311 in June 2017. Wrangler sales increased to 23,110 vehicles compared with 18,839 in June 2017.
       
      Ram Truck Brand
      Ram Truck brand scored a variety of records as sales increased 6 percent to 51,729 vehicles, making it the best June sales ever. Ram brand retail sales also had their best June ever, rising 4 percent to 36,750. Driving the increase was Light-Duty pickup truck retail sales, which rose 11 percent to 24,036 vehicles. Total sales of the Ram ProMaster van nearly doubled to 6,996 vehicles.  
       
      Chrysler Brand
      Chrysler brand total sales declined 32 percent in June to 13,484 vehicles compared with June of the previous year.
       
      Dodge Brand
      Dodge brand total sales rose 9 percent to 46,387 as Charger sales rose 4 percent to 6,640 vehicles compared with 6,379 vehicles in June 2017.    
       
      FIAT Brand
      Sales of Fiat declined 36 percent to 1,426 vehicles. 
       
      Alfa Romeo Brand
      Alfa Romeo brand sales of 2,249 vehicles were up significantly compared with the same month a year ago. Stelvio led the brand with 1,231 vehicle sales, followed by Giulia at 979 vehicles. 

    • By William Maley
      FCA US Reports May 2018 Sales
      FCA US reports best month of retail sales since July 2005 Jeep® brand reports record May of total sales, up 29 percent Jeep Wrangler reports record May of total sales, up 26 percent Ram Light Duty retail sales rise 18 percent in May June 1, 2018 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - FCA US LLC today reported sales of 214,294 vehicles in May 2018, an 11 percent increase compared with sales of 193,040 vehicles in May 2017.
       
      U.S. retail sales for the month rose 10 percent to 167,785, making it the highest month of retail sales since July 2005 when 219,045 vehicles were sold. It was also the best May since 2004. Retail sales accounted for 78 percent of total sales. Fleet sales accounted for 22 percent of total sales, a slight uptick from 21 percent for May 2017.
       
      Jeep® Brand
      Jeep brand total sales rose 29 percent to 97,287 vehicles, making it the best May in the company’s history. Driving the brand was the Jeep Wrangler as total sales rose 26 percent to 25,102 vehicles. The results marked the best May ever. Meanwhile, Jeep Compass total sales rose to 17,327 vehicles, making it the best month of sales ever.
       
      Ram Truck Brand
      Ram Truck brand total sales rose 2 percent to 51,884 vehicles compared with the previous year. Ram Light Duty retail sales rose 18 percent in May to 27,011 vehicles.   
      Chrysler Brand
      Chrysler brand total sales declined 18 percent in May to 14,724 vehicles compared with the same month a year ago.   
       
      Dodge Brand
      Dodge brand total sales rose 4 percent to 46,581. The Dodge Journey notched a new May record as monthly sales increased 37 percent to 10,966 vehicles.
           
      FIAT Brand
      Sales of Fiat declined 46 percent to 1,441 vehicles.  
       
      Alfa Romeo Brand
      Alfa Romeo brand sales of 2,377 vehicles were up significantly compared with the same month a year ago. Giulia led the brand with 1,175 sales, followed by Stelvio at 1,183 sales.
    • By William Maley
      FCA US Reports 2018 April Sales
      Jeep®  brand reports record April sales, up 20 percent Jeep Wrangler reports highest month of sales ever, up 58 percent  Ram brand notches highest April retail sales ever, up 3 percent May 1, 2018 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - FCA US LLC today reported sales of 184,149 vehicles, a 5 percent increase compared with sales in April 2017 of 176,176 vehicles.
       
      Overall sales were pushed by the Jeep® brand which reported record sales for April. Retail sales came in at 143,995 vehicles, down only 1 percent despite April having two fewer selling days and one less weekend compared with April 2017. Fleet accounted for 22 percent of total sales.
       
      Jeep Brand
      The Jeep brand total sales rose in April to 82,641 vehicles, eclipsing the record of 82,537 vehicles in April 2016. The Jeep Wrangler once again led the portfolio as the nameplate posted a new monthly sales record of 29,776 vehicles. April was also the second consecutive month of record sales for the Wrangler. Jeep Compass sales more than tripled to 11,521 vehicles.
       
      Ram Truck Brand
      Ram Truck brand sales declined 9 percent to 43,074 vehicles compared with the previous year. However, the brand reported its best April of retail sales ever with 36,560 vehicles sold, outpacing the last record of 35,558 set in April 2017.    

      Chrysler Brand
      Chrysler brand total sales fell 18 percent in April to 14,189 vehicles compared with the same month a year ago. The Chrysler Pacifica minivan posted a 5 percent retail sales increase to 7,864 vehicles.  
       
      Dodge Brand
      Dodge brand total sales rose 4 percent to 40,994 with the Dodge Journey setting a new April record as sales climbed 39 percent to 11,638 vehicles.   
           
      FIAT Brand
      Sales of Fiat vehicles declined 45 percent to 1,404 vehicles. 
       
      Alfa Romeo Brand
      Alfa Romeo brand sales of 1,847 vehicles were up significantly compared with the same month a year ago. Giulia led the brand with 1,123 vehicle sales followed by Stelvio at 702 vehicles. 

    • By William Maley
      A moment of silence for the 1.4L MultiAir four-cylinder that powered the Fiat 500 since its launch 2012 as it will not be appearing in the 2018 model. Instead, Fiat has slipped in the turbocharged variant of the 1.4 into all 500s (aside from the Abarth). This boosts power from 101 horsepower and 97 pound-feet of torque to 135 and 150 respectively. A five-speed manual and six-speed automatic are the transmission choices. Other mechanical changes include upgraded brakes and a sportier suspension tune.
      Pop and Lounge models become slightly aggressive outside with a new body kit, 16-inch wheels, fog lights, and 'Turbo' badge on the rear. The other key change is a backup camera being added to all 500s.
      No word on pricing, but Fiat will open the order books this month with deliveries taking place in the second quarter.
      Source: Fiat
      Press Release is on Page 2


      FIAT Brand Introduces All-turbo 500 Lineup for 2018
      All 2018 Fiat 500 models now come standard with 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine and 33 percent more horsepower than last year’s model 2018 Fiat 500 Pop and Lounge offer standard performance braking system and suspension, ParkView rear backup camera, sport spoiler and additional exterior upgrades High-performance, track-ready 2018 Fiat 500 Abarth models deliver up to 160 horsepower and 183 lb.-ft. of torque Customers who purchase or lease a Fiat 500 Abarth also receive – for no additional charge – a one-day high-performance driving session at the legendary Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving Dealers can order 2018 Fiat 500 vehicles this month, with cars arriving at FIAT studios in the second quarter 2018 FIAT product lineup also includes the fully electric 500e, functional 500L, all-wheel-drive small crossover 500X and the 124 Spider roadster February 8, 2018 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - The Fiat 500 lineup goes all-turbo for 2018, with the 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine and a sportier appearance now standard on all models.
       
      “With an all-turbo lineup, the iconic Fiat 500 now offers an even more dynamic driving experience and more standard horsepower than any of its competitors,” said Steve Beahm, Head of Passenger Car Brands – Dodge, SRT, Chrysler and Fiat, FCA – North America. “In fact, the entire FIAT brand lineup now comes standard with turbocharged power, adding to our roster of fun-to-drive, Italian-designed vehicles.”
       
      The 2018 Fiat 500 lineup is available in three models: Pop, Lounge and the high-performance Abarth. Pop and Lounge models now come standard with the 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine, which features a single turbocharger, twin intercoolers and a sport-tuned exhaust, and delivers 135 horsepower and 150 lb.-ft. of torque – 34 more standard horsepower than last year’s model. The MultiAir Turbo engine is paired with a five-speed manual transmission as standard and is available with a six-speed automatic transmission.
       
      Pop and Lounge models are also updated with standard 16-inch aluminum wheels, performance braking system, sport suspension and ParkView rear backup camera. Exterior updates include body-color front and rear fascias, side-sill ground effects, a sport spoiler, fog lamps and “Turbo” badging on the liftgate.
       
      On the Fiat 500 Abarth models, the track-tested 1.4-liter MultiAir Turbo engine delivers up to 160 horsepower and 183 lb.-ft. of torque; while Abarth-tuned hardware offers a world-class ride and track-ready durability.
       
      Other unique Abarth features include a performance suspension; three-mode electronic stability control with an innovative torque transfer control (TTC) system that maximizes throttle performance during on-throttle cornering; 16-inch Hyper Black aluminum wheels; and Pirelli tires with red brake calipers. An Abarth-designed concentric “double-tip” dual-exhaust system delivers a high-performance look with menacing Abarth-tuned sound.
       
      Inside, distinctive Abarth-styled front performance seats feature a one-piece design with large side bolsters, a racing-harness pass through, accent stitching around the perimeter and integrated side-thorax air bags. Below the instrument panel, Abarth-designed aluminum pedal covers feature Nero (black) rubber trim for a decidedly racing look.
       
      Should the driver choose to switch to Sport mode in a Fiat 500 Abarth, the turbo-boost gauge, mounted left of the instrument cluster, illuminates “Sport” and an up-shift light integrated in the cluster alerts the driver when engine speed is approaching the redline, giving the immediate feedback needed on the track or during high-performance driving.
       
      Customers who purchase or lease a Fiat 500 Abarth also receive – for no additional charge – a one-day high-performance driving session at the legendary Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving.
       
      The 500 lineup also features three new colors for 2018 (late availability) – Brillante Red, Mezzanotte Blue Pearl and Vesuvio Black Pearl – for a total of 11 exterior paint color choices. Any 2018 Fiat 500 model is also available as a Cabrio, delivering open-air freedom across the 500 lineup. 2018 Fiat 500 vehicles are available to order this month, with cars arriving at FIAT studios in the second quarter of this year.

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Ever since Mazda launched the MX-5 Miata back in 1989, competitors have been trying their best to out-maneuver it.; whether that is through better design, handling, or more power. While all have come and gone, while the Miata is still kicking around. What do you do in this case? If you can't beat them, join 'em. That's the case with Fiat as a few years ago, they would take the place of Alfa Romeo of developing a new roadster using the Miata as a base. The end result is the 124 Spider.
      Fiat’s designers wanted to do a modern interpretation of the 124 Spider designed by the legendary Pininfarina design house. The problem was trying to get that design to work with the MX-5 Miata’s structure. To pull this off, designers would add five inches to the overall length of the 124 Spider. The front end features many of the design touches found on the original 124 Spider with teardrop headlights, trapezoidal grille, raised fenders, and twin-power bulges on the hood. Around back is where the design begins to fall apart. The overall shape and certain choices such as the overhanging trunk lid don't fully mesh with the front. It looks like Fiat had two design teams working on either end of the vehicle, but put a curtain between them so they couldn’t see what the other was doing.
      The Abarth version of the 124 Spider does get some special touches to help it stand out from the other trims. They include a darker grille opening, 17-inch alloy wheels finished in a dark gray, and a quad-tip exhaust system. The only item we would change is making the Abarth badges smaller. The large size really detracts from the iconic look Fiat is trying go for.
      Putting the soft top down in the 124 Spider is very easy. Simply unlatch the mechanism holding the top in place and fold it back into its little storage space. Raising the top is just as painless as you just need to pull a latch behind the seats and pull the top forward. It will only take a few tries before you’re able to put the top up and down in just a few seconds.
      Moving inside, the only real differences between the 124 Spider and MX-5 Miata are the Fiat badge on the steering wheel, different fonts used for the gauges, and soft-touch plastics on the top of the door panels. Otherwise, the 124 Spider features the same layout and quirks of its donor vehicle. Controls readily fall to hand for either driver or passenger. Abarth models come with a 7-inch touchscreen with the Mazda Connect infotainment as standard equipment. On the plus side, Mazda Connect is easy to grasp thanks to an intuitive interface and a simple control knob. Downsides include the lack of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto;, and the awkward placement of the control knob. It will get in the way whenever you are shifting gears with either transmission.
      Snug is the keyword when describing the experience of sitting inside the 124 Spider. I’m 5’ 8” and had to set the driver’s seat almost all the way back to not feel cramped. Once I was able to find the right seat and steering positions, it felt like I was a part of the vehicle and not sitting on top of it. The passenger will complain about the lack of legroom as the transmission tunnel protrudes into the footwell. The seats themselves provide excellent support and will hold you in during an enthusiastic drive.
      The motivation for the 124 Spider is provided by Fiat’s turbocharged 1.4L MultiAir four-cylinder. The Abarth produces 164 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. The base Classica and up-level Lusso see a small decrease in horsepower to 160. The difference comes down to the Abarth featuring a different exhaust system. Our tester featured the optional six-speed automatic with steering wheel paddles. A six-speed manual comes standard. Although the 124 Spider has higher power figures than the Miata, it isn’t that much faster. Reviewers who have run 0-60 tests say the Miata does it under six seconds, while the 124 Spider takes over six seconds. There are two reasons for this: First, the Miata is lighter than the 124 Spider by an average of about 120 pounds. Second is the engine has a bad case of turbo lag. The turbo doesn’t fully spool up until about 2,000 to 2,500 rpm, leaving you wondering where all of this power is when leaving a stop. Once it’s going, power is delivered in a smooth and somewhat linear fashion.
      The automatic transmission is another weak point of this powertrain. It loves to upshift early and leaves you without any turbo boost. This can be rectified by using the paddles on the steering wheel or throwing the automatic into the manual shift mode. The manual transmission is the better choice as it allows more flexibility with the engine.
      EPA fuel economy figures for the 124 Spider stand at 25 City/36 Highway/29 Combined. Our average for the week landed around 28 MPG.
      If there is one place that the 124 Spider Abarth can give the MX-5 Miata a run for its money, it is in the handling. The Abarth feels more athletic and confident when entering a corner with little body roll and fast transitions thanks to a sport-tuned suspension. Steering is the same as Miata with excellent road feel and quick turning. The downside to the athletic handling is a very stiff ride. Road imperfections are directly transmitted to those sitting inside. There is also an abundance of wind and road noise coming inside the 124 Spider.
      In some ways, the 124 Spider is better than the MX-5 Miata. The Abarth provides crisper handling and the interior is slightly nicer than what you’ll find in the Miata. But in other areas, the Miata is the better vehicle. The turbo lag from the turbocharged 1.4L saps a bit of the fun out of the vehicle and the design is somewhat unflattering. We can understand why someone would pick the 124 Spider Abarth over the Miata as it is something different. But is it the better Miata? The answer is no.
      Disclaimer: Fiat Provided the 124 Spider, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2017
      Make: Fiat
      Model: 124 Spider
      Trim: Abarth
      Engine: Turbocharged 1.4L MultiAir Inline-Four
      Driveline: Six-Speed Automatic, Rear-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 164 @ 5,500
      Torque @ RPM: 184 @ 3,200
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 25/36/29
      Curb Weight: 2,516 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Hiroshima, Japan
      Base Price: $28,195
      As Tested Price: $30,540 (Includes $995.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      6-Speed AISIN Automatic RWD Transmission - $1,350.00

      View full article
  • My Clubs

  • Recently Browsing

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Reader Rides

About us

CheersandGears.com - Founded 2001

We ♥ Cars

Get in touch

Follow us

Recent tweets

facebook

×

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.