If you don’t find this car fun to look at and a kick to drive, you need an extra dose of Prozac.
The Fiat 500C is a modern take on a car that was introduced back in the summer of July 1957. They didn’t have a cloth top like this one that can be opened on the fly at up to 50 miles per hour. I tried it and it really works!
Unlike most drop tops, this little cutie doesn’t suffer from the shakes because you still have door rails to keep the Fiat stiff. No cowl shaking going on.
The ivory interior of this particular 500 looks like something Apple product designers would have come up with.
The finish on the plastic bits is flawless but the pieces aren’t quite as solid as say, The 500’s competition, namely the Mini.
The nice all in one gauge is very retro and well done. The TomTom removable navigation system by Mopar will run you an extra $400.
My Fiat came with a six-speed automatic that can be shifted manually. When you engage the sport button, the engine does get an extra dose of oomph. You also have your choice of a manual in a five speed.
The C comes with the 1.4 liter 101 horsepower MultiAir engine that I found to be plenty peppy. Or at least peppy enough.
As for the driving experience? Well the 15-inch wheels don’t like to be overtaxed but this little cutie turns on a dime and parking in a tight spot is a breeze. The wind noise when the top is down is minimal and even at highway speeds you can hold a decent conversation with your happy passengers. It’s just you, seven airbags, a killer Bose subwoofer and blue sky!
I have no idea how well the Fiat 500C will sell. But anyone who decides to plunk down some green will be smiling all the way to work or play.
Mike West has been on the air in Seattle for more than 30 years as part of Seattle’s best morning show teams. He also did mornings on KLOS Los Angeles for a little over a year before returning to Seattle. He currently hosts Breakfast With The Beatles every Sunday morning on the CBS Seattle station KZOK, 102.5 FM.