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2020 FIAT 500L Review

Poor fuel economy, cheap cabin materials, uncomfortable seats, and a rough ride all help land the 2020 Fiat 500L near the bottom of our wagon rankings.

Pros & Cons

  • Roomy cabin
  • Large cargo hold
  • Intuitive infotainment controls
  • Jittery ride
  • Poor fuel economy
  • Cheap cabin materials
  • Firm seats

Rankings & Research

The 2020 FIAT 500L's #6 ranking is based on its score within the Wagons category. Currently the FIAT 500L has a score of 6.1 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 39 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.




Critics' Rating: 4.4
Performance: 4.9
Interior: 7.0
Safety: 8.0
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

Thinking of leasing a FIAT 500L?

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 Is the Fiat 500L a Good Wagon?   

No, the Fiat 500L is a not a good wagon. Though it has a low price for the class, it does not represent a good value. Compared to its competitors, the 500L comes up short in terms of ride quality, cabin luxury, seating comfort, acceleration, and fuel economy. To its credit, it does provide plenty of cargo space.

Should I Buy the Fiat 500L?

There are many vehicles that do what the 500L does well but without major drawbacks. The Honda Fit is a roomy subcompact car with an impressive list of available safety features. If you’d rather stick with a wagon, consider the Volkswagen Golf SportWagen, which has a similar retail price but offers a more upscale cabin and longer list of available driver aids than the 500L. It’s more fun to drive too.

Compare the 500L, Fit, and SportWagen »

Should I Buy a New or Used Fiat 500L?

Fiat launched the 500L as an all-new vehicle for the 2014 model year, and there have been few changes over the years. There’s little reason to buy a new Fiat 500L, so if you really like this wagon, look for a used model. The last major update occurred for 2018, when the 500L gained Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration. Neither were available in older models. If you want a manual transmission, you’ll have to buy a 2014 to 2016 model.

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2017 500L, 2018 500L, and 2019 500L reviews to help make your decision. Also, check out our Used Car Deals page to learn about savings and discounts you can find on used vehicles.

Compare the 2018, 2019, and 2020 500L »

We Did the Research for You: 37 Reviews Analyzed

By researching Fiat 500L reviews, our hope is to provide you with the information you need to make car shopping a breeze. You'll find everything you need to know about this vehicle in our comprehensive review. It combines concrete data (like fuel economy estimates, predicted reliability ratings, and cargo space dimensions) with professional evaluations from 37 reviews.

This 2020 Fiat 500L review incorporates applicable research for all models in this generation, which launched for 2014.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News & World Report has been reviewing cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007, and our Best Cars team has more than 75 years of combined automotive industry experience. We care about cars, but we care more about providing useful consumer advice. To ensure our impartiality, an independent party handles our advertising, and our editorial team doesn’t accept expensive gifts from automakers.

How Much Does the Fiat 500L Cost?

The 2020 Fiat 500L has a base price of $22,250. The top-of-the-line Lounge trim starts at $24,395. While those are bargain prices compared to other wagons, they’re more expensive than many hatchbacks.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Fiat dealer.

Fiat 500L Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Fiat 500L or Fiat 500X?

Neither the 500L nor the 500X are great vehicles, and choosing between them is difficult. The 500X costs about $2,500 more than the 500L, but it comes with standard all-wheel drive, which you can’t get in the 500L. The 500X has nicer cabin materials and more available safety features, but the 500L has additional cargo space and a slightly better predicted reliability rating. Both cars have somewhat firm rides and engines better suited for city cruising than road trips.

Which Is Better: Fiat 500L or Kia Soul?

The Kia Soul is superior to the 500L in just about every way. Redesigned for 2020, the Soul provides a gentler ride, more potent engine options, and a longer list of available safety features than the 500L. It gets better fuel economy too. The Kia also has a lower starting price than the Fiat. There really isn’t a reason to go with the 500L over the Soul.

Compare the 500L, 500X, and Soul »

500L Interior

How Many People Does the 500L Seat?

The 500L seats five people, and cloth upholstery is standard. Split-folding rear seats, heated front seats, and leather-trimmed seats are available.

Both rows are spacious enough for adults, but the hard seats may feel uncomfortable during long drives. Additionally, the seats lack sufficient bolstering and aren’t very supportive.

500L and Child Car Seats

There are two complete sets of LATCH connectors for the 500L’s rear outboard seats, as well as a single tether anchor for the rear middle seat.

500L Interior Quality

This Fiat features hard plastics throughout the cabin, as well as shoddy build quality. This is especially disappointing at this price point.

500L Cargo Space

The 500L has 22.4 cubic feet of space behind the rear seats and 68 cubic feet with the second row folded down. Both figures are above average for a wagon and even beat out some SUVs, like the Mini Countryman.

500L Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

Standard in this Fiat is the Uconnect infotainment system. It includes a 7-inch touch screen, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone integration, Bluetooth, a USB port, and a six-speaker stereo.

Available equipment includes a navigation system, satellite radio, a Beats premium stereo, and a dual-pane panoramic sunroof.

The Uconnect infotainment system is found in many Fiat, Chrysler, Ram, Dodge, and Jeep vehicles, and it’s highly regarded for its ease of use. That holds true in the 500L, with its user-friendly touch screen and well-placed physical controls.

Read more about interior »

500L Performance

500L Engine: Best in the City

The Fiat 500L's MultiAir 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine makes 160 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed automatic transmission is standard.

The turbo-four supplies enough power for cruising around town. It feels peppy at higher speeds too, unless the car is loaded with passengers or cargo. There’s also significant turbo lag when taking off from a stop.

500L Gas Mileage: Poor

This vehicle trails nearly every rival when it comes to fuel economy. It gets an EPA-estimated 22 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway.

500L Ride and Handling: Skittish and Uneven

The 500L has a jittery ride, lurching and bouncing on uneven pavement. It also lacks steering feedback, and the brakes can feel grabby at times, though overall handling is composed. Front-wheel drive comes standard.

Read more about performance »

500L Reliability

Is the Fiat 500L Reliable?

J.D. Power gives the 2020 500L a predicted reliability rating of three out of five, which is about average.

Fiat 500L Warranty

Fiat covers the 500L with a four-year/50,000-mile limited warranty.

Read more about reliability »

500L Safety

500L Crash Test Results

At the time of writing, neither the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration nor the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has crash tested the 2020 Fiat 500L. The IIHS gave the similar 2019 model the highest rating of Good in four crash tests and the lowest rating of Poor in the driver’s side small overlap front test.

500L Safety Features

A rearview camera is the sole standard safety feature in the 500L. Rear parking sensors are the only driver aid available. Features like adaptive cruise control and blind spot monitoring, which can be had in most rival wagons, are absent.

Read more about safety »

500L Dimensions and Weight

The 500L is about 14 feet long. Its curb weight is 3,254 pounds.

Where Is the 2020 Fiat 500L Built?

Fiat Chrysler builds the 2020 500L in Serbia.

Which Fiat 500L Model Is Right for Me?

Fiat offers the 2020 500L in three trim levels: Pop, Trekking, and Lounge. Each trim has the same powertrain, so the main difference between them boils down to features. The base Pop is available with most of the features you can get in higher trims, making it a good bet.

Fiat 500L Pop

The entry-level Pop trim has a starting MSRP of $22,250. Its standard equipment includes a 7-inch touch screen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, a six-speaker stereo, a USB port, Bluetooth, a rearview camera, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and alloy wheels.

The Popular Equipment Group package ($795) adds satellite radio, dual-zone automatic climate control, rear parking sensors, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. The Premium Group package ($1,795) includes all of that, plus a navigation system and a Beats premium stereo.

Fiat 500L Trekking

The 500L Trekking starts at $23,575. It gains leather-trimmed seats, heated front seats, a 60/40-split-folding rear seat, a rear-seat center armrest, a GPS navigation system, satellite radio, and the Beats stereo.

The Popular Equipment Group remains available. The Urbana package ($595) adds a few unique styling elements. You can also buy a dual-pane sunroof for $1,395.

Fiat 500L Lounge

The top-of-the-line 500L Lounge trim has a base MSRP of $24,395. It picks up the contents of the Popular Equipment Group package. The sunroof remains available.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Fiat dealer.

See 2020 Fiat 500L specs and trims »

The Final Call

The 2020 Fiat 500L fails to impress. The 500L has its merits, such as a good amount of cargo room and an easy-to-use infotainment system, but they’re far overshadowed by its shortcomings. Lots of rival wagons are more fun or relaxing to drive than the 500L, and plenty of them have nicer cabin materials and more available driver assistance features.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • "Americans have taken a shine to small crossovers, but the 500L isn't one of them. Although the 500L offers serious cargo space, that's really the only thing to recommend this oddly proportioned wagon. Driving it in traffic is a chore, as acceleration is sluggish, and when the road opens up, you still have to tolerate the Fiat's uncoordinated ride and handling. Interior furnishings are cheap, and you can't get modern driver-assistance aids such as blind-spot monitoring or adaptive cruise control." -- Car and Driver
  • "The 2019 Fiat 500L is a compact wagon that tries to replicate the charm and playfulness of the diminutive Fiat 500 city car while offering greater utility. We do like the 500L's spacious interior and cargo area, and having four doors is more useful than just the two of the regular 500 … But the overall package just doesn't exude the sense of playfulness that makes the 500 such a charming car. The seats are hard, the ride is rough, and road and wind noise is palpable." -- Edmunds (2019)
  • "It's too bad that the 500L, ultimately proves to be a huge disappointment. At first glance, we thought that its recipe for a fuel-efficient, fun people mover would be attractive to young families or those looking to downsize from SUVs. Indeed, Fiat's wagon provides impressive interior space for its size, good visibility, super-easy access, and a commendable 27 mpg overall. But, alas, the 500L is too undeveloped, and several significant flaws keep it from scoring high enough in our testing to be recommended." -- Consumer Reports (2018)    
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2020 FIAT 500L

MSRP: $22,500 - $24,645

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