Looks expensive next to other mini-MPVs on the market
The 500L makes most sense when it’s kept as cheap as possible – Lounge trim looks expensive next to rivals such as the Citroen C3 Picasso. The 500L’s residual values aren’t as strong as cars such as the Ford B-Max, either, although they’re better than the Citroen’s.
None of the engines will cost you a fortune to run, but the turbocharged 1.4 will get through the most fuel. Company car drivers will want to go for the 1.3 diesel for its low CO2 emissions, and this model is likely to use the least fuel on longer journeys too.
The two-cylinder Twinair engine might promise much in terms of low running costs, but in the real world it struggles to meet the figures, because it has to be worked so hard. Fiat often have competitive finance deals on offer, and the 500L is no exception.
Fiat 500L equipment
Standard equipment is as expected, but nothing special
Pop is the entry-level offering and the cheapest trim available, but doesn’t come with much kit. Electric front windows, 15in steel wheels, remote locking, six airbags, and a tyre pressure-monitoring system are all you get.
Our favourite trim is the next level up – Pop Star. It gets more luxuries such as a leather gearlever, 16in alloy wheels, electric mirrors, air-con, a multifunction leather steering wheel and cruise control. It’s worth the extra.
As a result, there isn’t much point in going for the range-topping option, Lounge. It comes with rear parking sensors and climate control included, but we’d save some money and stick with Pop Star.
There’s also a more rugged trim, called Trekking. This comes with 17in alloy wheels, raised suspension, some extra body cladding and automatic lights and wipers.
Fiat 500L reliability
Fiat doesn’t have a great reliability record
The 500L wasn’t included in the latest round of customer satisfaction surveys or reliability records. However, Fiat finished below average for customer satisfaction and mid-table in our latest reliability survey.
All Fiats come with a three-year, unlimited-mileage warranty as well as a three-year paintwork warranty, and eight-year rust warranty. Servicing can be broken down into more manageable monthly payments rather than stumping up lots of cash each and every time if you wish.
Fiat 500L safety & security
A good level of standard safety kit as standard
The 500L has been awarded the full five stars in Euro NCAP crash tests. It comes with six airbags to keep you from harm in a crash, and various electronic aids are on hand to prevent an accident in the first place. These include stability control and tyre pressure monitoring. City braking is a relatively cheap option.
Security firm Thatcham has run its security tests on the 500L, but the results weren’t brilliant. It scored good marks for its ability to resist being driven away by thieves, but its resistance to being broken into was rated as poor. Deadlocks are standard, but an alarm is not.
The cheapest trim available, but doesn’t come with much kit. Electric front windows, 15in steel wheels, remote locking, six airbags, CD player, radio and a tyre pressure-monitoring system are standard.
Our pick POP STAR
Our favourite trim. It gets more luxuries, such as a leather gearlever, 16in alloy wheels, electric mirrors, air-con, a multifunction leather steering wheel, cruise control and a 5.0in touchscreen system with Bluetooth connection. It’s worth the extra.
Comes with rear parking sensors and climate control included, but we’d save some money and stick with Pop Star trim.
Gets a higher ride height, 17in alloy wheels, extra body cladding and standard kit including auto lights and wipers, city brake control and a centre rear armrest.