We’re betting when the Fiat 500 was first conceived in 1957, this version wasn’t in the wildest dreams of the Italian stylists.
It’s the four-door Fiat 500X crossover/compact SUV and while it’s big news in Europe, Fiat Chrysler Australia hasn’t as yet confirmed the newcomer for local sale.
In Paris, Fiat said the 500X would be offered in two model grades – one for urban lifestyles and the other slanted towards ‘leisure’ activities with off-road equipment.
Depending on the model you can choose petrol or diesel for the engine, a manual transmission, nine-speed automatic (a first for Fiat), a six-speed twin-clutch automatic, front-wheel-drive or four-wheel-drive.
The best of the bunch is the 137kW ‘Tigershark 2.4’ in the version equipped with the nine-speed automatic and four-wheel-drive.
Four-wheel-drive versions use the rear axle disconnection system of the Jeep Renegade which can seamlessly swap from four-wheel-drive to fuel-saving two-wheel-drive without requiring any input from the driver.
Dimensions certainly cast a shadow over the original Fiat 500 – the 500X measures 4.45-metres in length, 1.61-metres in height and is 1.8-metres wide.
Cargo capacity (rear seat in-place) also bests the regular 500 comprehensively at 350-litres.