Fiat has made some key changes to the 500X crossover, some of which make it a contender for people like us. The 500X now includes a better engine, all-wheel drive as standard, and keeps its unique Fiat styling.
Don’t let the round headlamps, cutesy exterior shape, and Fiat 500-esque looks of the 500X lull you into believing that this is just another useless urban compact. The 500X has good ground clearance, now (as of 2019) has standard AWD, and a peppy little turbocharged engine. These go with a surprisingly spacious interior and smart design.
If you’re tired of the usual when it comes to capable crossovers, this Fiat might fit you better. You don’t have to tell anyone that it shares things with the Jeep Renegade if you don’t want to.
Fiat 500X: Styling
Most of the styling cues for the Fiat 500X are taken from the fun little 500 coupe. That little car, which brings quirky Italian looks as its main course, isn’t a fit for everybody. For those wanting that style, but needing more space and better all-weather capability, the mechanically unrelated 500X is where it’s at.
The round headlamps, race-indented semi-clamshell hood, round bodywork, and tires pushed to the edge are all from the 500. The 500X, though, adds far more ground clearance, a slightly beefier under-grille intake, and four adult-usable doors. The race car stance and rounded rear hatch of the 500 are also seen on the 500X.
On the inside, the 500X bears little resemblance to the tiny 500. Switchgear is similar, with some shared pieces here and there, but the spaciousness and ease of entry and exit for the 500X are far and above what’s in the 500. Seating is larger and more comfortable as well.
The Fiat 500X has a wonderful, almost whimsical, dashboard design with the exterior color creating the centerpiece and round switches and knobs dominating otherwise. The gauge cluster is a three-zone similar to most Fiat models of old. Both the driver and front passenger have similar access to the infotainment screen, which is front-center on the dash, and good visibility from the windscreen.
The rear seat bench in the 500X is good for two adults or three kids across, though adding child safety seats to the mix would complicate things. One or two seats, using the easy-access LATCH or standard tether, are fine, but adding a third would be next to impossible in the center position.
Cargo space in the 500X is good as well, with plenty of room for most daily or weekly shopping runs. Getting bulky items from the big box store might be a bit tricky if the back seat is needed, but folding down the second row gives a lot of versatile space in this Fiat.
Fiat 500X: Everyday
Out and about in everyday driving, the Fiat 500X’s new turbocharged 1.3-liter engine adds a lot of fun to the drive quality. It generates 177 horsepower and all-wheel drive is standard, both of which make for a fun combination. In inclement weather, the 500X does well, thanks to good ground clearance and that AWD.
A family of two or three people will find the 500X to be right-sized and well done. Its style stands out amongst more contemporary competitors and the 500X adds a bit of flair with its drive dynamic as well. Pricing starts at $24,590 plus shipping and MPG ratings are very good at 30 mpg on the highway and 24 mpg around town.