Fuel economy, agility, shifter, clever top design.
Acceleration, ride, driving position, seat comfort, controls, rear visibility with top down.
The 500's agile handling and crisp-shifting manual make it fun to drive. The four-cylinder engine and five-speed manual returned 33 mpg overall, but require frequent downshifts to keep up on hills and with traffic. A 135-hp turbo engine improves the experience, but the ride is choppy and the cabin noisy. Head room up front is good, but the cabin is narrow and the steering wheel is too far away for some. The rear seats are very tight and difficult to access. The convertible has a clever top. The high-performance turbo Abarth's relentless grip makes it fun to drive, although its disappointingly vague steering lacks finesse and robs it of the go-kart feel and pinpoint accuracy of a Mini Cooper. The 500e electric version is enjoyable too. First year reliability of the non-turbo is average but the 500 scores too low to recommend. Reliability of the Abarth is still unknown.