It’s a Gas: Fiat Set to Offer 500 Hatchback with Internal Combustion

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy

Whilst the little Fiat 500 is presently only available with an all-electric powertrain, reports have surfaced that the Italian marque will soon offer the scamp with a gasoline-powered engine as well – potentially as early as the 2026 calendar year.

To be clear, this was always in the hopper, if unofficially. Even though the present model was introduced as an electric-only city car, the specter of an IC powertrain was never off the table – nor should it have been. The pint-sized rascal has always been the right shape and dimension to accept an entertaining gasser mill, preferably one with a roarty exhaust. We’re not convinced that’ll happen with this iteration, since it’s a hybrid powertrain which is intended to be slotted under the hood, but we remain hopeful.

Just like we remain hopeful the hybrid will be offered on this side of the pond once it begins production a couple of years from now. At present, the 500e, shown above, is a not-cheap EV city car, priced in the mid-$30s with a 42-kWh battery providing about 150 miles of driving range on a full charge. This makes the car something of a limited-use case for many customers, though there’s no doubt plenty of city dwellers will find these stats to fit their needs. A dose of Italian style doesn’t hurt, either. La dolce vita, baby.

Adding a hybrid option to the 500 hatchback would certainly broaden its appeal, both at home and in international markets. We will observe the general quiet backtracking of some brands on their commitments to be wholly EV by the end of this decade, of which Fiat is one, having uttered such a declaration a few years ago. Whether that sticks remains to be seen.

The model regularly outperforms in European markets compared to America, for reasons which should be blindingly obvious. Through the first quarter of 2024, the entire Fiat brand enjoyed just 154 sales in America, working out to just 0.05 percent of total Stellantis volume during that quarter. Not 5 percent, not 0.5, but 0.05 – that’s five one-hundredths of a single percent. In other words, the entire brand accounted for what would otherwise be qualified as a rounding error.

I shall now link a new ad for the Fiat 500e because Giancarlo Esposito is cool.

[Image: Fiat]

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Matthew Guy
Matthew Guy

Matthew buys, sells, fixes, & races cars. As a human index of auto & auction knowledge, he is fond of making money and offering loud opinions.

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2 of 19 comments
  • Varezhka Varezhka on Jun 02, 2024

    Not the biggest surprise, considering that the new 500 is a platform sibling of a similarly sized (but dead) Opel Adam. And Italy, its biggest market, is not the best market for BEVs. Curious if it will be the same 1.2L I3 mild hybrid as the bigger 600.

  • 3SpeedAutomatic 3SpeedAutomatic on Jun 03, 2024

    Just drop a turbo in a few.

    Soooo many kids today don't know how to handle a stick shift. Yet, it's still required in most Euro countries in order to get you driver's license.

    I threaten to get a Fiat 500 just to teach my nieces and nephews how to handle a stick shift, but none showed any interest. 🚗🚗🚗

  • SCE to AUX The original Capri was beautiful. The abomination from the 90s was no Capri, and neither is this.It looks good, but too similar to a Polestar. And what's with the whacked price?
  • Rover Sig Absolutely not. Ever.
  • EBFlex No. I buy as little Chinese products as possible.
  • John "...often in a state of complete disarray on the roads" What does that mean? Many examples in poor repair? Talk about awful writing.
  • Varezhka Saving sedans in US or globally? Right now around half of the global sedan sales is in China, just under a quarter in North America, and the remaining quarter distributed around the rest of the world. So for a sedan to stay around they must sell well in both China and North America (BMW, Mercedes, Toyota, Honda) or just extremely well in China (VW/Audi and Nissan). For everyone else, the writing is on the wall. There’s also a niche of subcompact sedans in SE Asia and India but I believe those are being replaced by SUVs too.