By Cars.com EditorsNovember 18, 2010
About the video
From the 2010 Los Angeles Auto Show, Cars.com's Kelsey Mays takes a look at the 2012 Fiat 500.
<v Narrator>cars.com auto review. Hi, I'm Kelsey Mays for cars.com. Ever since Italian automaker Fiat announced it was taking over Chrysler, we wondered when they would bring this little number, the 500 hatchback, over here to the states.
Well, it's finally here, we're at the LA auto show and we're going to check it out. We'll see what's interesting and new about it. We'll also see if I can fit into the backseat. The 500 is definitely a European looking car. You've got these kind of beady headlights up here, a little bit of chrome above the front bumper. If you look inside the headlights, the number 500 is actually inscribed here within the bezel. That's kinda cool. The overall length of the car, about 140 inches long. That's actually only about six, seven inches shorter than the Mini Cooper. So this car, though it looks small, isn't as small as you might think. The Smart Fortwo, for example, only about 106 inches long. Toyota's new Scion IQ, about 120 inches long. So this car is a little bit bigger than both of those. Trim levels for the 500 include the sport, the pop, and the lounge additions. Kinda fits well with Chrysler's trim naming conventions, which include things like "Main Street", "Rush", "Detonator", "Express", and "Ridiculous".` Okay. I was kidding about that last one. Certainly a very design driven interior here. I'm not sure there's any new levels in terms of materials quality, but it's very interesting to look at, especially with this kind of red expanse here that goes across the dash. No center console, so you're not going to have a ton of room there, but there is an armrest that flips down here just for the driver, and quite a bit of room to store things otherwise. For a small car, that's a pretty decent sized glove compartment and the door pocket's pretty good as well. I've actually got a good amount of room to move back here. The steering wheel tilts it doesn't telescope, but it's better than the steering wheel in the Smart Fortwo, which does neither. Here I am in the backseat, and that's where I would sit if I was driving. It's really tight, but so are the back seats in the Mini Cooper and the Scion IQ, and the Smart Fortwo doesn't even have a backseat. Still, it's fairly roomy upfront actually, and it promises to be fuel efficient too. We spoke with Fiat's CEO yesterday and she said she expects fuel economy to be well over 35 miles per gallon. Check it out when it goes on sale in January, Fiat's dealerships will be mostly showrooms within Chrysler dealerships. It goes on sale for a starting price of about 15 and a half thousand dollars. <v Narrator>For more car related news, go to cars.com or our blog kickingtires.net.