Fiat’s 500C will feature a full-length, electrically operated fabric roof in the style of the original 1960s car.
Roof apart, the cutesy town car is the same as the non-Abarth versions and will be available powered by three different engines: 1.3-litre 75bhp Multijet Turbodiesel, 1.2-litre 69bhp petrol, and 1.4-litre 100bhp petrol. The company’s latest 'Start&Stop' system is employed in the 5-speed manual gearbox, stopping the engine (as the MINI does) when in traffic, in neutral. Dualogic automatic transmission is an option.
The fabric roof is available in three colours (ivory, red and black) and includes a glass rear screen and high, centre-mounted stop-light. Two new paint colours will be available solely for the convertible 500, brilliant Pearl Red and a special Warm Grey that the company says is “typical of sports supercars”. I wonder who they are thinking of?
Fiat is confident that the (relatively) spacious interior of the standard car is retained for the soft-top. The luggage space can still be accessed when the roof is open.
If anything, the long fabric roof makes the car look more like its namesake and will, no doubt, be a big success.
The Fiat 500C will be launched to the international press at the Geneva Salon on 3rd March.
Text: Steve Wakefield
ClassicInside - The Classic Driver Newsletter