In taking press fleet deliveries from one of the companies I deal with I am constantly reminded of a famous line from one of my favorite movies, Forrest Gump. This week was no different as the baby blue 2017 Fiat 500 Cabrio (500c) pulled into the test driveway – I never know what I am going to get.
My first reaction was watching points drop drastically from my man card and after my first spin behind the wheel, I found myself hiding from the neighbors. This is not a vehicle I would ever buy for myself, and not just because it looks like we got it from the Ringling Bros. going-out-of-business sale. The 500c is small, and I had a difficult time getting comfortable in it despite the few seat adjustments offered. I banged my head a few times, I had difficulty with groceries, it almost did not fit our luggage for a trip during the week…it’s small.
The Fiat 500, or Cinquecento in its native language, is an iconic car for the automaker and came to America about a decade ago right after Fiat took a controlling share of the Chrysler Corporation. The modern 500 appears to be doing well globally as Fiat boasts more than 1 million sales since it appeared in 2007. Previously we have tested some performance (Abarth) versions of the 500 and have enjoyed them due to the enhancements made over the base Cinquecento, but this funky little Cabrio just couldn’t win my heart. This ain’t a car for a dude.
My wife, however, thought this was one of the cutest little rides she has seen in some time and when not covering her ears over my cussing every time I banged my head she enjoyed traveling in it, especially when we rolled back the power cloth top. The Cabrio (cabriolet) function in the Fiat rolls back the roof section to just above the trunk lid at the rear (and anywhere in between at speeds up to 60mph). Unfortunately, the gathered sections obscure most of your rearward vision in the inside mirror and I was disappointed to not see a backup camera in this car.