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7.5

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 7.5
Performance: 7.6
Interior: 6.4
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.6
Safety: 8.5
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2014 FIAT 500 Review

The 2014 Fiat 500 ranks in the bottom half of its class due to its below-average reliability and mediocre safety scores. The 500’s cabin is cramped and features unimpressive styling, while its base engine delivers feeble amounts of power. 

Pros & Cons

  • Low average prices
  • Exhilarating performance from Abarth model
  • Below-average reliability
  • Weak base engine
  • Small rear seat

New for 2014

  • Greater passenger headroom than previous models
  • Available passenger-seat armrest
  • Special edition 1957 model

2014 FIAT 500 Overview

Is the 2014 Fiat 500 a Good Used Car?

With very low average prices and go-kart-like maneuverability, the Fiat 500 is a good buy for those who are on a tight budget or drive mostly in the city. If you’re looking for more engaging driving dynamics, the performance-oriented Fiat 500 Abarth should impress. However, the 500 doesn’t have the nicest interior or many modern convenience features.

Used 2014 Fiat 500 Performance and Interior

The 2014 Fiat 500 is powered by a four-cylinder MultiAir engine that puts out a paltry 101 horsepower. In line with the 500's mission as a small city car, this engine has just enough pep for scooting around town. The front-wheel-drive 500 is also available with two turbocharged engines: the first makes 135 horsepower, and the zippy Abarth engine is good for 160 horsepower. While the midrange engine is more capable than the base offering, it can experience some turbo lag. Conversely, the 500 Abarth takes off quickly when you hit the gas and has no problem getting up to highway speeds. Most 500 models can be found with either a five-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission, but the Turbo and Abarth versions are only available with the manual transmission. Fuel economy estimates range from 30 mpg in the city and 38 mpg on the highway with the base engine and a manual transmission to 27 mpg in the city and 33 on the highway for a base model with an automatic. The all-electric Fiat 500e gets 116 mpg-e combined city/highway and can go 87 miles on a full charge. This model was only available in California and Oregon when new.

The 500 easily moves through tight city traffic, and its small size makes it a breeze to park.  There's some noticeable body lean when cornering, but Fiat 500 Sport and Turbo models have a sport-tuned suspension that improves handling. The 500 also maintains a comfortable ride quality over most roads.

Read more about 500 performance »

The Fiat 500 has room for four on standard cloth seats, though some models may have leather upholstery or heated front seats. Two taller adults can comfortably sit up front. Fiat lowered the passenger seat for 2014, which resulted in more headroom. In comparison, the rear seats are essentially unusable for anyone but children. There are two complete sets of LATCH car-seat connectors in the 500.

Standard features in the 2014 500 include a leather-wrapped steering wheel, Bluetooth, and a USB port. Optional equipment includes automatic climate control, satellite radio, a premium stereo, navigation, rear parking sensors, and a sunroof. Dashboard controls are laid out in a straightforward manner. While low-quality cabin materials aren’t unusual for the subcompact car class, the 500's interior – fitted with lots of hard plastics – is among the worst in the segment.

Read more about 500 interior »

Used 2014 Fiat 500 Prices

Average prices for a 2014 500 range from around $8,400 up to about $12,300 for a Fiat 500 Abarth. Prices can fluctuate with demand and availability, and what you pay will depend on the car’s mileage, features, and condition.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

We Did the Research for You: 78 Reviews Analyzed

To help you decide on your next used car, we analyze the consensus opinions of the automotive press alongside data like cost of ownership estimates, crash test ratings, and reliability scores.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking and reviewing cars for 10 years, and our editorial staff has decades of experience in the automotive industry. To ensure we stay impartial, we don't accept expensive gifts from car companies, and an outside team handles our advertising.

How Reliable Is the 2014 Fiat 500?

The 2014 Fiat 500 has a reliability score of 2.5 out of five from J.D. Power and Associates, which is below the industry-wide average of three.  

Read more about 500 reliability »

How Safe Is the 500?

The 2014 500 has about-average crash test scores for a subcompact car. It earned four out of five stars overall from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, with four stars in the rollover and frontal crash tests and five stars in the side crash test. The 500 also earned the highest rating of Good in four Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tests, but it received the lowest possible score in the small overlap front test.

Rear parking sensors are the only driver assistance feature available in the 500.

See 500 safety scores »

Should I Consider Another Used 500?

The Fiat 500 was introduced to the North American market for the 2012 model year. The biggest change during the car's first few years was the introduction of the midrange 500 Turbo for 2013. Opting for a 2012 or 2013 500 will get you mostly the same features as the 2014 model – but for less money.

Compare the 2012, 2013, and 2014 500 »

Which Used Fiat 500 Is Right for Me?

The 2014 Fiat 500 is available in hatchback and convertible (Fiat 500C) body styles and five trims: Pop, Sport, Lounge, Turbo, and Abarth. The Fiat 500e is an electric version.

If you prioritize performance, go with the dynamic 500 Abarth. It has a more potent powertrain than both the humble base engine and the midrange Turbo model. However, if you don't need loads of power under the hood, the 500 Lounge is a nice balance of price and features. It includes automatic climate control, satellite radio, and an Alpine premium stereo. Some Lounge models may also have features like rear parking sensors, leather upholstery, and heated seats.

Because of the 500’s low reliability rating, you may want to consider a certified pre-owned model. For certified pre-owned Fiat vehicles, the original new-car powertrain warranty is extended to seven years or 100,000 miles. CPO vehicles also get a three-month/3,000-mile Maximum Coverage Care warranty. There are restrictions related to mileage and models, so read the Fiat warranty page carefully.

Read more about certified pre-owned vehicles »

Read more about the Fiat certified pre-owned program »

2014 Fiat 500 and Other Cars to Consider

Which Is Better: 2014 Fiat 500 or 2014 Mini Cooper?

The completely redesigned 2014 Mini Cooper also has a retro European appearance. Aside from that – and a subpar reliability rating – these two quirky subcompact cars have little in common. The Mini tops the class in overall performance, with its range of strong turbocharged engines and agile handling. Performance enthusiasts should consider a Cooper S or John Cooper Works edition; they offer a more thrilling drive than the 500 Abarth. The Mini Cooper's interior also makes it a better buy over the 500. It features upmarket materials, like standard leatherette seating, along with amenities that aren’t available in the 500, such as a rearview camera and an infotainment system. Though it will cost more, the Mini Cooper is a better choice.

Which Is Better: 2014 Fiat 500 or 2014 Chevrolet Sonic?

The 2014 Chevrolet Sonic gets slightly better reliability scores than the 500, and it earns commendable crash test ratings. Like the 500, the Sonic has a capable yet tame base engine and an available turbocharged engine that delivers better performance. The Sonic also excels as a comfortable daily driver. Even the back seat boasts a good amount of passenger room for a small car, and used models can be found with modern amenities like an infotainment system. The Sonic is one of the best subcompact cars you can buy.

Compare the 500, Cooper, and Sonic »

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