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2017 FIAT 500 Review

The 2017 Fiat 500 has athletic handling, a powerful available engine, and a user-friendly infotainment system. However, its weak base engine, low-quality cabin materials, and cramped back seats push this subcompact car toward the back of the class.

Pros & Cons

  • Easy-to-use infotainment system
  • Lively city driving
  • Powerful engine in Abarth models
  • Underwhelming base engine
  • Tight headroom and cramped back seats
  • Subpar interior materials

New for 2017

  • Ability to mix and match available features across all models
  • Easy, Sport, and Turbo trims discontinued




Critics' Rating: 6.7
Performance: 6.5
Interior: 5.4
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.2
Safety: 8.4
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2017 FIAT 500 Overview

Is the 2017 Fiat 500 a Good Used Car?

The 2017 Fiat 500 – available as a coupe or convertible – is a fun-to-drive car for city dwellers. Beyond that, however, it isn’t particularly practical. Subcompact cars are small by design, but the Fiat 500 has some of the tiniest dimensions in the class. As a result, it’s not a great companion for big grocery hauls or weekend getaways. It’s also not ideal for carting more than two people, as the rear seats are quite cramped. The Fiat 500 may be short on space but not on features – and they’re easy to use. Cabin materials are disappointing, particularly for one of the more expensive cars in the class.

Why You Can Trust Us

Our used car rankings and reviews are based on our analysis of professional automotive reviews, as well as data like crash test scores, reliability ratings, and ownership expenses. We researched 89 Fiat 500 reviews to help you decide if it’s the right used car for you.

The U.S. News Best Cars team has been ranking cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007, and our staff has more than a combined 75 years of automotive industry experience. To ensure our impartiality, our staff never takes expensive gifts or trips from car companies, and an outside team handles the advertising on our site.

How Much Is the 2017 Fiat 500?

There are more than 75 listings for the 2017 Fiat 500 on our site, ranging from $11,000 to $18,000. Its average list price is $14,000. Prices vary depending on the model’s condition, mileage, location, and features.

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How Much Does the 2017 Fiat 500 Cost to Own?

The 2017 Fiat 500’s five-year estimated costs for gas, insurance, maintenance, and repairs are about $19,300. That’s lower than the five-year estimated expenses for most rivals, including the 2017 Chevrolet Sonic ($24,800) and 2017 Toyota Yaris ($21,600).

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New Fiat 500?

The 2018 Fiat 500 starts at $16,245, which is nearly $2,250 more than the average cost of a used 2017 Fiat. For the 2018 model year, all Fiat 500 trims come with a turbocharged four-cylinder engine that generates 34 more horsepower than the 2017 models’ base engine. Fiat also updated the car’s styling for a sportier look. Other than that, the 2018 Fiat 500 is the same as the 2017 model. Unless you want a bit more power and style, there’s no reason to spend a couple thousand dollars more on the newer model.

Read about the new Fiat 500 »

The Fiat 500 is one of the more expensive vehicles in the class. As a result, there are a few new (and better) subcompact cars that you can buy for less than the 2017 500’s average list price. For example, the 2018 Kia Rio (starting at $13,900) has an outstanding predicted reliability rating, nimble handling, and a user-friendly infotainment system with available Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration. You might also consider the athletic-handling 2018 Ford Fiesta for about $14,200.

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Which Model Year of the Fiat 500 Is Best?

The 2017 Fiat 500 is part of a generation that began with the 2012 Fiat 500. For the 2015 model year, Fiat added standard Bluetooth and an extra USB port. The 2016 model received a standard 5-inch touch screen. The 2017 model didn’t receive much in the way of new features, so you can save yourself some money and get a very similar car by purchasing one of the two previous model years.

Compare the 2015, 2016, and 2017 Fiat 500 »

How Reliable Is the 2017 Fiat 500?

J.D. Power gives the 2017 Fiat 500 a predicted reliability rating of 3.5 out of five. That’s above average for the industry but merely average for the subcompact car class.

Read more about 500 reliability »

2017 Fiat 500 Recalls

As of this writing, the 2017 Fiat 500 has no reported recalls.

See more information on Fiat 500 safety recalls »

Which Used Fiat 500 Model Is Right for Me?

Available as a coupe or convertible, the 2017 Fiat 500 comes in three trims: Pop, Lounge, and Abarth. The 500 Pop base trim comes with a decent number of standard features, including a touch-screen infotainment system with Bluetooth and voice commands. The Fiat 500 Lounge adds automatic climate control, heated front seats, leather upholstery, and satellite radio. Those two trims are great if most of your driving is local. If you plan to spend a lot of time on the highway, however, you’ll be more satisfied with the performance-oriented Abarth’s improved suspension and stronger engine.

For the 2017 model year, Fiat permitted new-car shoppers to mix-and-match features, allowing them to customize the 500 any way they wanted. So Pop model shoppers could add just heated front seats and satellite radio, for example. Consequently, when shopping the 2017 model, pay attention to the features list.

See 2017 Fiat 500 trims and specs »

What Does Fiat's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Fiat offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles five years old or less and with fewer than 75,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. For its certified pre-owned vehicles, Fiat extends the original new-car powertrain warranty to seven years from the original sale date or 100,000 miles. CPO vehicles also get a three-month/3,000-mile Maximum Coverage Care warranty. Additional benefits are available, including a 90-day SiriusXM satellite radio trial subscription, a CarFax vehicle history report, 24-hour towing and roadside assistance, and a car rental allowance. There are mileage and model restrictions, so read the Fiat warranty page carefully.

Fiat has one of the worst CPO programs among affordable carmakers, according to our analysis. Kia, Hyundai, Chevy, Ford, Honda, and Mazda are all better.

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How Safe Is the Fiat 500?

In four Insurance Institute for Highway Safety crash tests, the 2017 Fiat 500 received a top rating of Good. In the driver’s-side small overlap evaluation, it received the lowest rating of Poor. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 500 a four-out-of-five-star rating for overall safety. It earned four stars in the NHTSA’s rollover and frontal crash evaluations and five stars in the side crash test.

The Fiat 500 doesn’t have much when it comes to advanced safety features, lacking even a rearview camera, which many competitors include standard. This is particularly troubling in cabriolet (convertible) models, which have poor rear visibility when the soft top is folded. Rear parking sensors are standard in the Lounge and Abarth trims.

See 500 safety scores »

2017 Fiat 500 Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2017 Fiat 500 or 2017 Honda Fit?

The 2017 Honda Fit doesn’t have the lively handling or engine power of the Fiat 500, but it’s the more functional and well-rounded car. The Honda Fit’s cabin is nicer, and its overall cargo capacity is about 22 cubic feet bigger than the 500’s. However, both cars suffer from underpowered base engines and limited back-seat headroom. Overall, the Fit is the more practical vehicle, which is one of the reasons it was named our 2017 Best Subcompact Car for the Money.

Which Is Better: 2017 Fiat 500 or 2017 Kia Rio?

The 2017 Kia Rio covers most of the Fiat 500’s cons. Unlike the 500 – and most other cars in the class – the Rio has a powerful engine that’s capable of quick highway acceleration without much noise. The Rio is available in hatchback and sedan body styles. The Rio hatchback offers much more overall cargo space than the Fiat. The Kia Rio’s interior also beats the 500’s, offering plenty of headroom in both rows and good legroom in the front seats. Despite its lower average list price, the Rio also has finer cabin materials than the 500.

Compare the 500, Fit, and Rio »

2017 Fiat 500 Performance

How Does the 2017 Fiat 500 Drive?

The Fiat 500 comes with a 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 101 horsepower. A five-speed manual transmission is standard, and a six-speed automatic is available. The Abarth trim comes with a turbocharged version of that engine, producing 157 horsepower with the automatic transmission and 160 horsepower with the manual. Although the base Fiat 500 moves quickly through city traffic, it lacks some enthusiasm. The Abarth model has a more powerful engine that provides faster acceleration, which makes for superior highway driving.

The 500’s spry handling makes it perfect for maneuvering through tight city streets and fitting into small parking spaces. However, the Abarth is the better trim for open-road driving, as its tighter suspension improves handling and braking.

Does the 2017 Fiat 500 Get Good Gas Mileage?

The 2017 Fiat 500 gets slightly above-average gas mileage for the class. According to the EPA, models with the base engine and automatic transmission get 27 mpg in the city and 33 mpg on the highway. The Abarth trim with the automatic transmission gets 24 mpg in the city and 32 mpg on the highway.

Read more about 500 performance »

2017 Fiat 500 Interior

How Many People Does the 2017 Fiat 500 Seat?

The Fiat 500 seats four. Cloth upholstery is standard, and leather-trimmed front seats are available. Up front, the seats are surprisingly roomy. However, models with the available sunroof have less headroom. Unless they’re small children, rear-seat passengers will wish for more head- and legroom. While the Fiat is a stylish car with a number of bold interior and exterior elements, the quality of its cabin materials is a letdown.

How Many Car Seats Fit in the 2017 Fiat 500?

Both rear seats have upper and lower LATCH hardware for child safety seats.

2017 Fiat 500 Features

The Fiat 500 comes standard with a straightforward infotainment system that includes Bluetooth, voice commands, and a 5-inch touch screen. A sunroof, navigation, and a Beats premium sound system with satellite radio and a trunk-mounted subwoofer are available in all trims.

See 2017 Fiat 500 specs »

Read more about 500 interior »

2017 Fiat 500 Dimensions

Fiat 500 Cargo Space

With just 9.5 cubic feet of cargo space behind the back seats and 30.2 cubic feet with the rear seats folded, the 500 doesn’t hold much. The convertible’s cargo bay holds even less with its 5.4-cubic-foot capacity.

2017 Fiat Length and Weight

The 2017 Fiat 500 is about 11.6 feet long, and its curb weight ranges from 2,366 to 2,511 pounds.

Where Was the 2017 Fiat 500 Built?

Fiat built the 2017 500 in Mexico.

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