Usually it’s America that has to wait years for a new European model to reach it – or they just never get it. But this time it’s the other way around. The new Fiat 500e, the electric version of the Cinquecento, will only be available in the American market.
The car will first launch in California, and gradually reaches other states. Part of the reason they are not offering the 500e in Europe is complicated financial issues. It will be made by Chrysler in Mexico. Shipping the cars all the way to Europe from there does not sound very efficient, especially as Sergio Marchionne, the boss of all things Fiat/Chrysler, says they’ll initially lose up to t0 ten grand on each 500e sold.
Fiat 500e is also a very average electric car, with a motor that barely develops 100 hp and 200 Nm of torque, and takes 8 hours to be charged. Fiat does not feel confident enough to bring it down to Europe and put it up against something like Nissan LEAF.
It is, however, one of the coolest EVs to be launched next year. Compared to the standard 500 it has a modified front fascia and distinctive aero parts such as front and rear spoiler, flat underbody and lowered ride height, to reduce the drag coefficient as much as possible.
Pricing and final specs of the Fiat 500e for the American market are ye to be confirmed.