2016 fiat 500c Model Overview
New for 2016
The refreshed 2016 Fiat 500c gains a revised exterior design, a new trim level, and an available UConnect infotainment system featuring a five-inch touchscreen, Bluetooth connectivity, and voice command. Five new exterior colors have been added: Spitfire Orange, Grigio Cenre (light gray), Anchor Gray (dark gray), Latte Menta (light gray), and Celeste Blue (light blue). The special edition model called the 1957 Edition continues to be offered as a hatch or convertible.
The 2016 Fiat 500c is the convertible variant of the 500 hatchback and features a retractable cloth roof that can be had in black, red, or beige.
Two engines are available a 1.4-liter I-4 with 101 hp and 98 lb-ft of torque in the Pop, Easy and Lounge trims, and a 1.4-liter turbo I-4 with 160 hp and 170 lb-ft (157 hp and 183 lb-ft with the automatic) in the 500c Abarth. A six-speed automatic transmission is standard on the Pop, Easy, and Lounge trims while the Abarth comes standard with a five-speed manual standard while the automatic is optional. Due to its size, cargo capacity is small at 5.4 cubic feet with the split-folding rear seats up and 23.4 cubic feet with them down.
In addition to the standard dual front and front-side airbags, the 500c also comes with a driver’s knee airbag and side curtain airbags since it retains its B- and C pillars.
The 2016 Fiat 500, the car in which the 500c is based on, earned a four-star overall safety rating from the NHTSA (out of a possible five stars). In IIHS evaluations, the 2015 model received a Good score in four categories and Poor in the small overlap front crash test (Good is the highest possible score).
Trims, Packages, and What’s Standard
Base 500c Pop models come standard with 15-inch steel wheels with wheel covers, power windows, power door locks, and power heated side mirrors. Stepping up to the Easy trim adds a seven-inch TFT display, a premium audio system, the UConnect infotainment system with a five-inch touchscreen, 15-inch alloy wheels, Bluetooth connectivity, and voice command. The range-topping Lounge grade adds premium cloth seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and a six-speaker premium audio system with 276 watts. Rear parking sensors and an upgraded Beats by Dr. Dre audio system are available as an optional extra in all 500c models.
The 1957 Edition comes with leather upholstery, 16-incl alloy wheels with a body colored design, retro Fiat badges, a contrasting roof color and a sport suspension. On the performance-oriented 500c Abarth, standard features include a 157-160-hp 1.4-liter turbo-four, larger brakes, a specially tuned suspension, 16-inch alloy wheels, and a three-mode ESC system.
What We Think
In a 2012 First Test review, we said that the 500c is a “bona fide head-turner” because of its attractive, retro-inspired exterior and interior design.
The 500c isn’t a traditional convertible because the car retains its B and C pillars for extra structural rigidity. Performance, however, is lackluster with slow acceleration even when Sport mode is engaged. Steering is also lackluster since it doesn’t transmit much road feel to the driver. The car’s small size, on the other hand, means it’ll fit in nearly every parking spot. Stepping up to the more powerful Abarth model improves straight-line acceleration while handling is improved thanks to a more aggressive suspension and steering calibration, especially in Sport mode. However, it suffers the same issues as the 500 Abarth hatch, including excessive understeer and a high seating position that exaggerates its body motions.
- Stylish retro-chic design inside and out
- Fits everywhere
You Won’t Like:
- Limited trunk space
- Unusually high seating position
- Abarth model has too much understeer